Home | Blog | Software | Reviews and Features | Forum | Help | Donate | About us
topbanner_forum
  *

avatar image

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length
  • December 09, 2016, 05:42:56 AM
  • Proudly celebrating 10 years online.
  • Donate now to become a lifetime supporting member of the site and get a non-expiring license key for all of our programs.
  • donate

Last post Author Topic: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G  (Read 31715 times)

40hz

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 11,768
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #100 on: May 05, 2010, 01:04:36 PM »
I honestly don't feel that great about seeing the journalist shield laws coming up for argument with possible criminal complications in the mix when the root of the story is a mere tech gadget.

Spot on! :Thmbsup:

You're one of the very few people to have said that, and I couldn't agree more.

I think it very well might be disastrous for the "new press" movement if this became the test case for determining what the definition of "journalist" is.

What we need to be especially careful to not succumb to is something Clay Shirky referred to as "the conservation of outrage" should we discover our original anger was the result of erroneous information we'd been given.

Something to think about.

Mr. Shirky is an interesting writer on media topics,  and my little summary doesn't do justice to his presentation. You can (and should) read it in full at his weblog:

http://www.shirky.co...ilure-of-amazonfail/

Quote
The Failure of #amazonfail

In 1987, a teenage girl in suburban New York was discovered dazed and wrapped in a garbage bag, smeared with feces, with racial epithets scrawled on her torso. She had been attacked by half a dozen white men, then left in that state on the grounds of an apartment building. As the court case against her accused assailants proceeded, it became clear that she’d actually faked the attack, in order not to be punished for running away from home. Though the event initially triggered enormous moral outrage, evidence that it didn’t actually happen didn’t quell that outrage. Moral judgment is harder to reverse than other, less emotional forms; when an event precipitates the cleansing anger of righteousness, admitting you were mistaken feels dirty. As a result, there can be an enormous premium put on finding rationales for continuing to feel aggrieved, should the initial rationale disappear. Call it ‘conservation of outrage.’

<more>


wraith808

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 8,408
  • "In my dreams, I always do it right."
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #101 on: May 05, 2010, 01:22:05 PM »
Sleasy Pete is a snitch - Who has (he feels) a hankering need for that $4,000... So be bumps into Jims table (a few times), fetches the notebook from the floor (when it falls), and then beats feet down to the local PD to turn in the notebook (of Jims) what he'd "found"...

The Fuzz happily pay Sleasy Pete the $4,000 for the notebook, because it has everything they need to bring down Jim's opperation and be rid of him for good.

Now do you really think that anybody in the DA's office is gonna give a rats ass about Jims complaint that his notebook was stolen?!?

Do you really think Sleasy Pete is going to get arrested for stealing Jims Notebook?!?

Hell No - He'll be way to busy posing for photos with his shiny new Key-to-the-City...

So, let me summarize:

You'd equate law enforcement with technical journalism?  For all of the talk about individual rights and such, and the sensationalist approach to using such an example, that in the end is what you expect the reader to be shocked into denial over.  Sort of like the very true reason behind the fact that Universal Health Care will never be repealed- the fact that they take the edge case and use it as the total of their defense.

So is that what you're doing?

40hz

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 11,768
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #102 on: May 05, 2010, 01:30:02 PM »
@StoicJoker-

Like it! ;D :Thmbsup:

But there's a few problems with the analogy.

  • Bookie Jim is engaged in an illegal activity. Apple isn't. (At least on paper.)
  • Sleazy Pete is working for the police as a paid informant. Gizmodo isn't.
  • A paper notebook isn't an engineering prototype. It may contain secrets, but there isn't anything in its form or function that is inherently proprietary. The iPhone contains both proprietary data and embodies proprietary intellectual property in its hardware and design.
  • The DA has made it clear he's after Jim. Regardless of how any of us may feel, nobody in authority is actively going after Apple. (At least not yet.)

We have to be careful with analogies. That's why the article by Prof. Green was so valuable. He basically forces us to confront the facts in the actual incident - and the relevant laws - rather than the philosophical and moral issues surrounding them.

As former Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. once remarked:

"This is a court of law, young man, not a court of justice."

And that's an important and very real distinction.

 :)

« Last Edit: May 05, 2010, 01:31:40 PM by 40hz »

40hz

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 11,768
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #103 on: May 05, 2010, 01:35:52 PM »
So is that what you're doing?

Ummm...I think 'Stoic' was only trying to insert a little levity into the discussion.

And I'd suspect he is also a very nice person.

 :)

wraith808

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 8,408
  • "In my dreams, I always do it right."
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #104 on: May 05, 2010, 02:29:28 PM »
So is that what you're doing?

Ummm...I think 'Stoic' was only trying to insert a little levity into the discussion.

And I'd suspect he is also a very nice person.

 :)


I didn't mean it in a bad way... sorry if it came off that way; it was a lazy reply which apparently didn't convey what I meant very well if you thought that.  :-[  I should have waited to reply since yours summed up everything better anyway in a non-lazy way. :)

Stoic Joker

  • Honorary Member
  • Joined in 2008
  • **
  • Posts: 6,296
    • View Profile
    • www.StoicJoker.com
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #105 on: May 05, 2010, 06:10:17 PM »
@wraith808 - It's all good man, I've had days where I phrased things a bit shorter then I meant to too. ;)

@StoicJoker-

Like it! ;D :Thmbsup:
That's a relief, I had a feeling if nobody got the humor I'd get hammered for it  :-\ ...but I hit post anyway.

Quote
But there's a few problems with the analogy.
Damn, Okay I'll give it a shot.

Quote
  • Bookie Jim is engaged in an illegal activity. Apple isn't. (At least on paper.)
Well... Unless you're planning to use the two wrongs make a right defense, you can't really leverage that distinction.

Quote
  • Sleazy Pete is working for the police as a paid informant. Gizmodo isn't.
Actually no, SP is just some random schmuck off the street. Perhaps it's just a Florida thing, but we have 1-800-crimeline billboards all over the place. Any Joe average can dial-in a dime on someone/thing and pickup a check (assuming the tip is (convict-able) valid). Being a bar owner (Where PR is an issue for both sides...), I've had occasion to spend quality time with the local Fuzz discussing who is on the top of their Would-Like-to-Find list - So I know first hand that really interesting tips get better rewards.

The connection I was making is that either way a "stolen item" was being "purchased" by way of a "finders fee".

Quote
  • A paper notebook isn't an engineering prototype. It may contain secrets, but there isn't anything in its form or function that is inherently proprietary. The iPhone contains both proprietary data and embodies proprietary intellectual property in its hardware and design.
The notebook contained the client list, inventory, and a booking operation business model.

Objectively:
 1. Notebook was $3 at staples
 2. iPhone was $10 in parts at RadioShack.

...However, both carry a high intrinsic value to either side in both cases.

Quote
  • The DA has made it clear he's after Jim. Regardless of how any of us may feel, nobody in authority is actively going after Apple. (At least not yet.)

The roles get fuzzy here true. But the connection is an expressed interest in acquiring something that quite likely will be stolen. Distinction being, it's apparently (by way of observation) perfectly fine and good to sell stolen items to the police (as long as it's not being done during a sting operation).

Quote
We have to be careful with analogies. That's why the article by Prof. Green was so valuable. He basically forces us to confront the facts in the actual incident - and the relevant laws - rather than the philosophical and moral issues surrounding them.

Agreed. ...however, the laws that are relevant, are based on the philosophical and moral environment of the time period in which they were penned. This is usually referred to colloquialistic-ally as the Spirit-of-the-Law in question.

Quote
As former Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. once remarked:

"This is a court of law, young man, not a court of justice."

And that's an important and very real distinction.

Absolutely - Problem being that part of the destinction between the two is not everybody can afford the same quality of attorney... Not to mention that politics frequently plays heavily in whether or not somebody gets a pass or a crucifixion (seen most frequently during election years...).
« Last Edit: May 05, 2010, 06:12:32 PM by Stoic Joker »

40hz

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 11,768
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #106 on: May 05, 2010, 06:55:11 PM »

@StoicJoker-

Like it! ;D :Thmbsup:
That's a relief, I had a feeling if nobody got the humor I'd get hammered for it  :-\ ...but I hit post anyway.


Could be worse. I have the exact opposite problem.

People (esp. my GF) often start laughing when I'm being dead serious.  >:(

Still, like you, I continue to hit post anyway.  :-\

 ;D

Renegade

  • Charter Member
  • Joined in 2005
  • ***
  • Posts: 13,220
  • Tell me something you don't know...
    • View Profile
    • Renegade Minds
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #107 on: May 05, 2010, 08:32:59 PM »
Well, I suppose that I'm going to hit Post. ;) :P (Please nobody take offense. That is not my intent.)

I honestly don't feel that great about seeing the journalist shield laws coming up for argument with possible criminal complications in the mix when the root of the story is a mere tech gadget.

Spot on! :Thmbsup:

You're one of the very few people to have said that, and I couldn't agree more.

I think it very well might be disastrous for the "new press" movement if this became the test case for determining what the definition of "journalist" is.

*snip*

Here comes the Devil's advocate...

I'm going to have to disagree quite strongly here.

The raid was simply wrong. They could have gotten a subpoena.

That there are *allegations* of criminal activity are very, very far from sufficient grounds to step on journalists like that. The point of protecting journalists is to *try* to preserve a free state by guaranteeing freedom of the press and freedom of expression. Limiting the press by passing laws to make different aspects of reporting illegal would be simple.

It's a very dangerous road to go down.

I'll even show you all here how and why you already agree with me... ;)

There have been several cases where the press has posed as children to contact child molesters, then turned that over to police. This is what we call "entrapment" and it is illegal. That it was the press contacting them is simply a matter of semantics. It's entrapment. It's illegal. Those people they caught still got prosecuted.

So, who wants to say that catching child molesters is 'wrong'? ;) Save the children!

More on illegal activities that have been legislated as legal... On the same heart-chain-tugging line...

Canada, the Netherlands, and a number of other countries have passed anti foreign sex-tourism laws that make it (il?)legal to prosecute people for sex crimes committed outside of the country, and specifically, for child-sex tourism (mostly targetted at Southeast Asia). So... Sovereign states are prosecuting for acts that are committed outside of their fair and legal jurisdiction.

Kidnapping and forced confinement are pretty much illegal anywhere. But this is what is done when a state prosecutes someone for a "crime" that is committed outside of its jurisdiction.

Hmmm... See a dangerous precedent here?

However, this is not completely unprecedented. Some countries will prosecute their citizens for any act they (want to or) deem illegal no matter where it is committed. A friend of mine was fined (i.e. summary conviction) in Korea for something he did in the Philippines (nothing serious -- he was shipping consumer goods into Korea, and at the time it was legal -- afterwards it was made illegal because of me and him -- i.e. he was convicted of a crime that had not yet been made illegal -- I was also fined for the same thing, although I was in Korea at the time). 

Now, I'm not defending child molesters. They're simply used as an excuse for states to commit crimes themselves, and children are used all the time in arguments. i.e. Are you FOR or AGAINST the children? Children are used as shields to promote agendas all the time. I recently saw an anti-smoking ad: "Smoking kills children." Ok, I exagerate... that was the sub-text. The actual text was, "Don't let children breathe your smoke." Whatever. It shows the point.

The principle here is about protecting the freedom of the press with the aim to preempt tyrany of the state.

It is simply a matter of the state making things illegal to prevent the press from reporting.

Now, this entire Gizmodo/Apple thing may be really small potatoes, but it shows the direction that the state will take. It shouts very clear that the state is more concerned about its own power than it is concerned about freedom for its citizens. (Because we all know Gizmodo will get hammered here.)

Remember, "innocent until proven guilty"? Gizmodo and Jason Chen have not been convicted of any crime, and yet the police are breaking down their doors... For what amounts to an extremely minor offense, if any. Stray 1 mm off the beaten path, and we'll hammer you into oblivion -- this is the message that is being sent.



@StoicJoker-

Like it! ;D :Thmbsup:

But there's a few problems with the analogy.

  • Bookie Jim is engaged in an illegal activity. Apple isn't. (At least on paper.)

Apple is involved in illegal activity. Anti-trust??? Besides, gambling isn't illegal... Only gambling that the state doesn't like is illegal.

  • Sleazy Pete is working for the police as a paid informant. Gizmodo isn't.

Gizmodo is an informant for the people at large. They serve everyone in an open manner.

How is being a snitch an excuse for stealing?

I'm not seeing how Sleazy Pete is justified where Gizmodo isn't.

  • A paper notebook isn't an engineering prototype. It may contain secrets, but there isn't anything in its form or function that is inherently proprietary. The iPhone contains both proprietary data and embodies proprietary intellectual property in its hardware and design.

An engineering prototype is just a bunch of junk that you pay a few bucks for at Radio Shack (as mentioned earlier).

If I write the cure for cancer down in a notebook, that's infinitely more valuable than having 1 dose of the cure. i.e. The ability to create and replicate (intellectual property or "knowledge") is more valuable than a single instance of it.

I don't think you've debunked the analogy. If anything, I think you've pointed out how the analogy is actually stronger.

  • The DA has made it clear he's after Jim. Regardless of how any of us may feel, nobody in authority is actively going after Apple. (At least not yet.)

I don't see how the DA going after Jim but not Apple is relevant. They are both committing "illegal" acts. (Apple has been guilty of the same things Microsoft has been convicted of (anti-trust) to a higher degree for a very long time. Browser... media player... etc. etc.)

Are you trying to say that if the DA says it's ok to steal, then it is ok to steal? If we want to put someone in prison, then it's ok for us to break the law ourselves?

I think that is a very dangerous thing that needs to be very closely examined. (I am not saying that I am against it or for it. I only want to point it out.)


As former Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. once remarked:

"This is a court of law, young man, not a court of justice."

And that's an important and very real distinction.

THANK YOU!!!

110% correct!

What we have here in this thread is a bit of a red-herring.

Some people are talking about "legalities", while others are talking about "justice", while others are equating the two. Sigh...

Just because something is legal or illegal doesn't make it right or wrong. Just because something is "wrong" doesn't mean that it is/should be "illegal". Just because something is "right" doesn't mean that it is/should be "legal". (Note the "is/should be" there. There is an infinite divide between the two.) Similarly, we can subsitute "desirable" and "undesireable" in there as well.

I think that my little tirade above points out that there is a problem with equating "legal/right/desirable" and "illegal/wrong/undesirable".
Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

40hz

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 11,768
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #108 on: May 05, 2010, 11:00:24 PM »

I think that my little tirade above points out that there is a problem with equating "legal/right/desirable" and "illegal/wrong/undesirable".


Good gracious Renegade! You certainly live up to your forum name... ;D

But I think you may be equating a little too much of "everything" with "everything else."  ;)

And Justice Holmes' famous quote is not a "red herring" at all. It's a very succinct clarification of what actually goes down in a US courtroom.

Courts deal with the law as it is currently written. Not the way we'd like the law to be.

So while I very much enjoyed your "tirade" (along with some of the interesting points you raised along the way  :up:) I can't really say they'd be all that relevant in a courtroom or criminal investigation.

This isn't meant as a knock. Just a semi-rueful nod towards the realities of the legal process itself.

 :)

« Last Edit: May 05, 2010, 11:05:56 PM by 40hz »

Carol Haynes

  • Waffles for England (patent pending)
  • Global Moderator
  • Joined in 2005
  • *****
  • Posts: 7,986
    • View Profile
    • Dales Computer Services
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #109 on: May 06, 2010, 03:53:15 AM »
Let me ask a couple of different questions ... why was a search warrant issued anyway? Apple already had their property back at that point and the article published so what exactly were they looking for? What justified confiscating computer equipment?

At best this seems to have been some sort of fishing expedition and I thought courts were only supposed to issue warrants to search for specific items such as drugs, stolen goods or illegal weapons when evidence has been presented to justify the intrusion.

If it was a fishing trip for information surely that would be equivalent to denying him the right to silence?

40hz

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 11,768
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #110 on: May 06, 2010, 06:40:15 AM »
^Very good questions.

The actual warrant authorizes the search and seizure for two reasons. It was believed that:

- the items in question were used in the commission of a crime

- the items in question tend to show a felony was committed OR a particular person committed a felony

I'm guessing they're looking for correspondence or other data that could show Dave Chen or Gizmodo had engaged in a conspiracy to illegally obtain the phone prior to it actually being taken - or for something that could show Chen had knowingly involved himself in an act he knew to be illegal. (Something as simple as an e-mail where he casually referred to the phone as being  'swiped' would be one example of the sort of thing they might look for.)  And I'm also sure the police were very interested in obtaining the names of anyone else who might have been involved.

There's also the intimidation factor being brought into play here. Police searches are incredibly intrusive and upsetting to most people. So "rattling the cages" is a common tactic when police are conducting an investigation.

Fishing expedition is exactly what it sounds like. And that's become far too common with post-911 search warrants.

I thought courts were only supposed to issue warrants to search for specific items such as drugs, stolen goods or illegal weapons when evidence has been presented to justify the intrusion.

That's always been a problem with searches in the US. Warrants are usually quite specific as to the where and the what. But they're considerably less specific when it comes to why. Why they're issued is based on probable cause. "PC" has a much lower burden of proof than evidence to be presented in a courtroom.

Basically all that's required is for someone to find a judge who can be convinced there's sufficient probable cause based on something called the "totality of the circumstances" to issue a warrant. It's all very subjective. Different judges have different opinions as to what constitutes probable cause. Some are exceptionally strict while others are very lenient. Police usually know one or two "cooperative" judges they can call on when they need a warrant issued  in a hurry.

Although abusive and illegal searches occur with some frequency, in most cases the evidence they obtain is not admitted in court. Judges seem to be willing to grant fairly broad leeway when it comes to issuing warrants so the police can do their job. But they're generally much less willing to cut them any slack once a case comes to trial.

Note too that US search warrants are issued both to allow the polices to obtain evidence - and to prevent evidence from being destroyed.

That's why any time a computer system is involved, the police tend to grab anything that has a cable connected to it "just in case." Ridiculous as this practice may seem to those of us who know better, it's still generally allowed by the courts since advances in computer technology make it very difficult for the police to stay caught up - and which is something they freely admit is a problem.

Quote
If it was a fishing trip for information surely that would be equivalent to denying him the right to silence?

Unfortunately, no. That would only apply to his own verbal testimony.

A defendant can't be compelled to make statements or comments that could result in self-incrimination. But anything else in his possession that's been legally discovered can be treated as evidence. That includes paper, photos, computer files, personal diaries - and whatever else the police can dredge up.

So while you can't be forced to admit you've done something wrong, you can be forced to to give up "personal" papers and decrypt "private" files on your laptop if a judge so orders.

The right to silence only applies to your own spoken words.

« Last Edit: May 06, 2010, 08:21:25 AM by 40hz »

Carol Haynes

  • Waffles for England (patent pending)
  • Global Moderator
  • Joined in 2005
  • *****
  • Posts: 7,986
    • View Profile
    • Dales Computer Services
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #111 on: May 06, 2010, 08:04:00 AM »
So basically if you live in California and you aren't a corporate entity with lots of money you are royally screwed by the legal system ?

40hz

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 11,768
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #112 on: May 06, 2010, 08:44:13 AM »
No, not at all.  :)

It just means that there are statutes on the books that you have to be aware of and also be careful not to run afoul of.

One big advantage traditional news agencies have that blogger-journalists don't is ready access to expert legal counsel.

I'm willing to bet that there isn't one single news agency, newspaper, magazine, or television station that would have been foolish enough to have bought that iPhone. And that's not because Apple is so politically "connected" as some people infer.

It's because any sane attorney would have told them it would be a generally stupid idea, likely be illegal, and definitely be open to question as far as ethics were concerned.

So while it's all well and good to take umbrage with politicians and corporations, the fact remains the same situation would have come about for Gizmodo - no matter which company was involved - had they decided to push it.

The presence of Apple, and the possible mis-issuance of a search warrant adds a little frisson to the mix. But that's just another manifestation of the 'show biz' that is California.

I'm sure Apple's attorneys made a few phone calls. But that's hardly sufficient grounds to spin it into a whole scenario positing political influence peddling, corrupt police officials, and overly compliant judges.

Maybe a little bit of Apple's hype-machine is starting to rub off on all of us?

Either way, it will have it's day in court, at which time I suspect a very different story will emerge from what's been told so far.

In the mean time, we'll all have to do our best to conserve our outrage. ;)

----

P.S. Individuals aren't alone when it comes to getting royally screwed over by California's legal system. California courts have a long-standing reputation for regularly doing a number on  government agencies and business entities. And sometimes for the most ridiculous and far fetched legal reasoning imaginable.

If Dave Chen gets screwed in court, it won't be the first time an individual took on a corporation and lost. If Apple gets screwed in court, it won't be the first time a big company took on 'the little guy' and lost.

Welcome to the Hotel California folks!


« Last Edit: May 06, 2010, 09:01:26 AM by 40hz »

wraith808

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 8,408
  • "In my dreams, I always do it right."
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #113 on: May 06, 2010, 09:00:55 AM »
In the mean time, we'll all have to do our best to conserve our outrage. ;)

Very good summation, and very good conclusion! :)

Renegade

  • Charter Member
  • Joined in 2005
  • ***
  • Posts: 13,220
  • Tell me something you don't know...
    • View Profile
    • Renegade Minds
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #114 on: May 06, 2010, 09:44:35 AM »

I think that my little tirade above points out that there is a problem with equating "legal/right/desirable" and "illegal/wrong/undesirable".


Good gracious Renegade! You certainly live up to your forum name... ;D

But I think you may be equating a little too much of "everything" with "everything else."  ;)

And Justice Holmes' famous quote is not a "red herring" at all. It's a very succinct clarification of what actually goes down in a US courtroom.

Courts deal with the law as it is currently written. Not the way we'd like the law to be.

So while I very much enjoyed your "tirade" (along with some of the interesting points you raised along the way  :up:) I can't really say they'd be all that relevant in a courtroom or criminal investigation.

This isn't meant as a knock. Just a semi-rueful nod towards the realities of the legal process itself.

 :)



I think you've mistaken what I meant there. I didn't mean the judge had a red herring. I meant that WE have a red herring here. When you say
Quote
Courts deal with the law as it is currently written. Not the way we'd like the law to be.
You show that you are clearly talking about matters of law, and not justice. I'm trying to point out that in portions of the discussion, law and justice are confused/muddled, or used interchangeably.

As for my tirade being useful in a courtroom... Nah. Not at all. And by that, I mean that I'm not particularly concerned about laws. (See the red herring here?)

The Jim & Sleazy Pete analogy shows where those matters of law and justice get confused or blended or muddled. Is it ok to break the law to catch law breakers? All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others. (Rule of law for who???)

Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

Renegade

  • Charter Member
  • Joined in 2005
  • ***
  • Posts: 13,220
  • Tell me something you don't know...
    • View Profile
    • Renegade Minds
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #115 on: May 06, 2010, 10:03:52 AM »
40Hz, I think Carol has a point. Given the sheer volume of laws, statutes, and regulations, it's simply complete insanity to require everyone to know all of them and abide by all of them all of the time. It's just not reasonable. (And I'll certainly grant you that a lot of insanity comes out of Californian courts! :P )

"Ignorance of the law is no excuse." -- I think that's just bunk. Esoteric laws and reasonable mistakes...

The US has about 3/4 of a percent of its population in prison -- higher than any other country. Laws in the US have run amok and are destroying the country. http://en.wikipedia....in_the_United_States

Quote
In 2008, over 7.3 million people were on probation, in jail or prison, or on parole at year-end — 3.2% of all U.S. adult residents or 1 in every 31 adults.

WOW! That's simply stunning. Over 3%. There is something seriously wrong there. I have a hard time believing that Americans are really all that evil/bad. No. The problem isn't the people. It's the legislators and the judiciary.

"Justice is blind." No. Laws are blind. Justice is smart enough to open its eyes and face reality.

Laws are supposed to serve people and better their lives. Something has gone horribly wrong.

(BTW -- I find Australia is very much like that Californian insanity. Knee-jerk chaos. Makes me sick.)
Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

wraith808

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 8,408
  • "In my dreams, I always do it right."
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #116 on: May 06, 2010, 10:05:47 AM »
The Jim & Sleazy Pete analogy shows where those matters of law and justice get confused or blended or muddled. Is it ok to break the law to catch law breakers? All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others. (Rule of law for who???)

Actually, I think that in the case of Jim & Sleazy Pete, if the defense was able to prove the circumvention of their client's rights, or the commission of a crime in the prosecution of the case, not only would the book be thrown out, but all evidence gathered from (or possibly gathered from) the use of the book.

The US has about 3/4 of a percent of its population in prison -- higher than any other country. Laws in the US have run amok and are destroying the country. http://en.wikipedia....in_the_United_States

Quote
In 2008, over 7.3 million people were on probation, in jail or prison, or on parole at year-end — 3.2% of all U.S. adult residents or 1 in every 31 adults.

WOW! That's simply stunning. Over 3%. There is something seriously wrong there. I have a hard time believing that Americans are really all that evil/bad. No. The problem isn't the people. It's the legislators and the judiciary.


Actually, I think that America is the land of opportunity- whether your area of entrepreneurship is legitimate business or crime.  Considering the socioeconomic changes of the last 20-30 years, I'm just glad it isn't higher, though if things keep going the way they are, that percentage could well rise.  Are there people in jail that shouldn't be?  Yes.  But is it enough to make a dent in that 3%?  I don't think so.
« Last Edit: May 06, 2010, 10:08:35 AM by wraith808 »

40hz

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 11,768
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #117 on: May 06, 2010, 12:05:37 PM »

"Ignorance of the law is no excuse." -- I think that's just bunk. Esoteric laws and reasonable mistakes...

The US has about 3/4 of a percent of its population in prison -- higher than any other country. Laws in the US have run amok and are destroying the country. http://en.wikipedia....in_the_United_States

Quote
In 2008, over 7.3 million people were on probation, in jail or prison, or on parole at year-end — 3.2% of all U.S. adult residents or 1 in every 31 adults.

WOW! That's simply stunning. Over 3%. There is something seriously wrong there. I have a hard time believing that Americans are really all that evil/bad. No. The problem isn't the people. It's the legislators and the judiciary.

To be honest I think there are three other factors which have direct bearing on the number of people incarcerated in the US beyond what I too will agree is partly caused by its ridiculous hodge-podge of laws and jurisdictions.

First, the US has a very large and well-connected number of detection and enforcement agencies. In the words of St. Mung:"Anyplace you got a whole lotta COPS - a whole lotta LAW gets done."

And like you, I also don't believe the US is home to a lot of intrinsically evil people.

But it is home to a huge number of people...

And there are a huge number of very complex laws on its books...

 And it has a very large number of well-equipped police agencies actively out looking for violations.

So I think a good bit of that is simple statistical probability. To paraphrase St. Mung:

Lotta People + Lotta Laws + Lotta Cops = Whole Lotta People getting busted.

Is the "crime" rate and the high incarceration level merely indicative of a higher level of crime? Or is it just that the US is better equipped (i.e. funded) to spot it and take some sort of action? More to the point, is the well documented American fascination with law and jurisprudence (and our Puritan moral heritage) so great that we're more willing than most countries to lock up our own?

Which leads to the second factor which contributes to incarceration.

The US can better afford to lock people up than most other countries.

People pay taxes. People want bigger jails. Bigger jails get built.

Parkinson's Law says that: Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion.

I'd like to propose Renegade's Incarceration Corollary:

The prison population expands so as to fill the space made available to hold it.

So why does the US lock so many people up? Because it's equipped itself to do so.

In a nutshell: We do because we can.

(Remember. You read it here first folks!  ;D)

The third factor that I think contributes to the high incarceration level is our near-religious belief in in the notion of individualism.

We would much rather jail somebody than try to change the way they think.

Putting somebody in a concrete and steel 8 X 10 box for several years to sit and (hopefully) change their own mind is considered far less morally repugnant than doing something to directly force them to think differently.

In a way, it's almost like we're saying it's ok to think and act any way you like as long as you understand you're not going to be allowed out in the general public if you step over the line.
So now the message is: If you wanna be bad, there's a place to do that. It's called jail.

As a result, the new American jails have pretty much abandoned the old rehabilitation ethos they had prior to the 80s. Nobody in their right minds will argue jails rehabilitate anybody anymore. Now they're simply viewed as correctional institutions - facilities primarily designed to hold people as a form of punishment - and to administer the occasional lethal injection in such places where it's still permitted.

But interestingly enough, even in capital cases, at no time does the government do anything to get the the convicted to see their actions in a different light. Although the law may be willing to take human life, it's not willing to force a change in person's attitudes or beliefs.

The individual is sacred. We may punish or hang you. But we will never force you to think in a certain way.

So that's my take on the primary causes for the size of the US prison population:
  • higher statistical probabilities for breaking the law and getting caught
  • economic factors which allow for a large prison population to exist in the first place
  • and a preference to punish rather than attempt to force psychological or moral changes in the individual.

-----

It's fairly easy to break the law...
   And it's also fairly easy to get caught.

      So there are lots of jails....
         Which we're quite willing to put people in....

            Because we'd rather jail somebody than tell them what to think.

Or at least so it seem to me. 8)


« Last Edit: May 06, 2010, 12:11:55 PM by 40hz »

JavaJones

  • Review 2.0 Designer
  • Charter Member
  • Joined in 2005
  • ***
  • Posts: 2,717
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #118 on: May 06, 2010, 01:57:22 PM »
Man this thread is insanity, hehe. Ok, just one quick point to add. I think one might consider the large prison population in the US is also influenced by our not only hard-line stance against "recreational drugs", but the fact that we have a full-on "task force" and a "war on drugs". I don't think many other countries are quite so serious about arresting people on drug charges. After all, we have a whole branch of law enforcement for this - the DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency).

Here are some quotes from the quickest source I could find (so happens to be the World Socialist Website :-[ I'm sure I could find a "better" source if I spent more than 30 seconds on the search):
http://www.wsws.org/...p2007/pris-s29.shtml

Quote
According to a new report from The Sentencing Project, drug arrests have more than tripled in the last 25 years, to a record 1.8 million arrests in 2005. The so-called war on drugs has pushed the number of incarcerated drug offenders up by 1,100 percent since 1980. During this same period, rates of drug use declined by half.
The overwhelming majority of drug arrests are for possession of marijuana, and most persons in prison for a drug offense have no history of violence or high-level drug selling activity.

Quote
The number of prisoners held without being sentenced is also on the rise, according to the Justice Department figures. In 2006, 62 percent of jail inmates were awaiting trial, up from 51 percent in 1990 and 56 percent in 2000. Most were arrested on drug offenses.

Whether drugs are illegal in your country or not, I doubt their illegality is as strictly enforced as it is here in the US.

- Oshyan

Carol Haynes

  • Waffles for England (patent pending)
  • Global Moderator
  • Joined in 2005
  • *****
  • Posts: 7,986
    • View Profile
    • Dales Computer Services
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #119 on: May 06, 2010, 03:50:09 PM »
Don't forget the economic incentive to get bodies into private prisons in the US (not to mention judges that are happy to get kick backs)

mwb1100

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 1,522
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #120 on: May 06, 2010, 04:33:38 PM »
I think JavaJones and Carol have hit on the big 2 reasons for the high incarceration rate in the US: the War on Drugs and law enforcement as an economic force (which goes far beyond prisons as business). I think both are an outgrowth of the 'military-industrial complex' that has grown in the US since the end of WWII.

Hey - how's that for thread drift...?

40hz

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 11,768
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #121 on: May 06, 2010, 04:55:52 PM »
I think I'm going to bow out of this discussion.

Best to all & carry on!  :) :Thmbsup:
« Last Edit: May 06, 2010, 05:06:36 PM by 40hz »

Renegade

  • Charter Member
  • Joined in 2005
  • ***
  • Posts: 13,220
  • Tell me something you don't know...
    • View Profile
    • Renegade Minds
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #122 on: May 06, 2010, 11:28:39 PM »
Sorry. It wasn't my intention to derail/drift the thread so much. (I think that thread drift is an inevitable event in constructive discussions when there are differences in opinion. That drift is an attempt to discover the underlying metaphysical principles that people hold that are the root cause of the disagreement. You heard it here first! ;) )

Quote
Because we'd rather jail somebody than tell them what to think.

It seems to me that you are very optimistic there. I'm not really so forgiving and don't have such a bright outlook on the topic there.

To me, it seems more like a form of tyranny where people are imprisoned for no good reason. The marijuana example seems to be an excellent one. Pot-heads don't run around robbing, raping and murdering. They're pretty harmless. Why would anyone want to throw them in prison? To satisfy their own self-righteousness?

Other potential (and historical) examples include:

  • * Religious "offenses" (witchcraft, blasphemy) and
  • * Sexual "offenses" between consenting adults (homosexuality, sodomy, prostitution, etc.) and
  • * Even simply believing different things (McCarthyism) or
  • * Being of the wrong ethnicity (Jews, blacks, Japanese, etc.) or
  • * Having the wrong profession (again prostitution, unlicensed doctors/lawyers)
  • * Not belonging to the right club or organization (again, unlicensed doctors/lawyers, non-union workers, etc.)
  • * Saying the wrong thing (stating beliefs contrary to some [arbitrary] standard, e.g. speech that can be considered racist, communist/religious/capitalist speech in different places, etc. etc.)

At what point should something be illegal? There are many laws that people are in prison for that we don't need.

To sum up my [general] position there, I believe that a lot of what is "illegal" should be removed from the law books. I'm all for having the minimal set of laws required for society to function smoothly. Fewer laws are better.

To sum up my [thread specific] position on the Apple / Gizmodo / Police raid thing, I don't see why the law needs to get involved at all. If you're stupid enough to lose (at a bar) truly valuable [intellectual] property that belongs behind locked doors, then it's your own fault. Boo-hoo. Smarten up next time and grow up. Don't get drunk, lose stuff, then start crying about it.

Anyways, this has been very interesting. A lot of very different positions here.
Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

Stoic Joker

  • Honorary Member
  • Joined in 2008
  • **
  • Posts: 6,296
    • View Profile
    • www.StoicJoker.com
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #123 on: May 07, 2010, 06:34:06 AM »
Outside of softening the angle on the engineer's role (company policy put the phone in his hand on the street - the outcome was inevitable), that pretty much sums up my take on the whole affair.

If Apple would have left their very own internal gaystapo perched on the guys door step (not just visit once as a token gesture), to sweat the phone out of him - I'd of thought that to be funny as hell - It would even have earned them a few points in my book. But instead the bully went crying to mommy because little johnny stood up to them...and that just ain't right.

Renegade

  • Charter Member
  • Joined in 2005
  • ***
  • Posts: 13,220
  • Tell me something you don't know...
    • View Profile
    • Renegade Minds
    • Donate to Member
Re: Apple instigates Police Raid over lost/stolen iPhone 4G
« Reply #124 on: May 07, 2010, 08:50:39 AM »
Outside of softening the angle on the engineer's role (company policy put the phone in his hand on the street - the outcome was inevitable), that pretty much sums up my take on the whole affair.

If Apple would have left their very own internal gaystapo perched on the guys door step (not just visit once as a token gesture), to sweat the phone out of him - I'd of thought that to be funny as hell - It would even have earned them a few points in my book. But instead the bully went crying to mommy because little johnny stood up to them...and that just ain't right.

I would have thought that the engineer/Apple would have the intelligence to call the phone and ask for it back nicely. Seems to be asking too much though. :P
Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker