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We all hate Word docs and PDFs, but have they ever led you to being hit with 32 indictments?

Posted on February 24th, 2018 at 0:17 by Sueyourdeveloper in category: News

Quote

They are potentially the two most popular file formats in the world – Microsoft Word’s .DOC and Adobe’s .PDF. And it’s fair to say they have caused millions of people billions of hours of frustration. But spare a thought for lobbyist and Trump campaign adviser Paul Manafort, of Virginia, for whom translating from one format to another has led directly to the imposition of no less than 32 US federal indictments for fraud and conspiracy. He denies any wrongdoing.

We have all experienced the situation where you save a Word document as a PDF, only to later find you need to get that information back in an editable form and can’t find your original file.

So what do you do? First, you pray you saved the PDF in a way that enables you to copy-paste that text back into a new Word doc. It is a royal pain in the ass if you didn’t – you need to get hold of a piece of software that can scan the document and pulls out the words. That rarely works perfectly so it needs tidying up.

Sigh.


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@rob_pike

Posted on February 23rd, 2018 at 19:55 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

/bin/true used to be an empty file. The shell would open it, do nothing, and exit with a true status code.
When the Unix Support Group (development organization at Bell Labs) formalized everything, they gave it a long SCCS header, as they did every other file, and then needed to add “exit 0” at the end. The file was therefore infinitely larger than before.
At some point, somewhere (not sure where) it was decided this was poor engineering, probably because the shell spends time reading that big SCCS header as a comment one byte at a time.
(It probably became a shell builtin somewhere along the line too, but that’s for someone else to study.)
The command moved to /usr/bin/true. I don’t know when, where and especially why.
Eventually to avoid the unbearable overhead of executing a comment that shouldn’t be there at all, someone rewrote true as a C program. What was once an empty file is now a non-portable executable binary compiled from C.
This is why we can’t have good software. This program could literally have been an empty file, a nothing at all, a name capturing the essence perfectly.
But the inexorable forces of improvement dictate we can’t accept that, so here we are:

% file /usr/bin/true
/usr/bin/true: Mach-O 64-bit executable x86_64
%

Instead of:

% file true
true: empty
% true
% echo $?
0
%


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Man removes feds’ spy cam, they demand it back, he refuses and sues

Posted on February 22nd, 2018 at 15:22 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

Last November, a 74-year-old rancher and attorney was walking around his ranch just south of Encinal, Texas, when he happened upon a small portable camera strapped approximately eight feet high onto a mesquite tree near his son’s home. The camera was encased in green plastic and had a transmitting antenna.

Not knowing what it was or how it got there, Ricardo Palacios removed it.

Soon after, Palacios received phone calls from Customs and Border Protection officials and the Texas Rangers. Each agency claimed the camera as its own and demanded that it be returned. Palacios refused, and they threatened him with arrest.

Palacios, who had run-ins with local CBP agents going back several years, took the camera as the last straw. He was tired of agents routinely trespassing on his land, and, even after complaining several times, he was frustrated that his grievances were not being heard.

As a possible way to ward off the threat of arrest, he sued the two agencies, along with a named CPB agent, Mario Martinez. Palacios accused them of trespass and of violating his constitutional rights.

[..]

Palacios’ ranch is situated at the 35-mile marker due north from Laredo, along Interstate 35, just three miles south of the small town of Encinal. The nearest US-Mexico border crossing is at Laredo.

The precise distance between the border and Palacios’ ranch matters: under federal law, agents can go onto private property that is within 25 miles of the border “for the purpose of patrolling the border to prevent the illegal entry of aliens into the United States.”

In other words, if Palacios’ ranch were within that range, he likely wouldn’t have a case.


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The blue marble

Posted on February 22nd, 2018 at 10:39 by John Sinteur in category: News


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Florida Teachers’ Pension Fund Invested in Maker of School Massacre Gun

Posted on February 21st, 2018 at 19:24 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

As Florida teachers grieve over the mass shooting that left 17 students and colleagues dead last week, some of them may be surprised to learn they’ve been helping fund the firearms industry—including the company that made the gun used that bloody Wednesday.

A state pension plan for Florida teachers held 41,129 shares in American Outdoor Brands Co. valued at more than a half-million dollars, according to a Dec. 31 securities filing listing the plan’s holdings. Formerly known as Smith & Wesson, Springfield, Massachusetts-based American Outdoors manufactured the semiautomatic AR-15 assault rifle that was used in the Feb. 14 attack on the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

If you still believe a pension fund exists to benefit employees contributing to it, I’ve got a nice bridge for sale…


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Indonesia’s Mount Sinabung Volcano Erupted Today and the Photos Are Spooky as Hell

Posted on February 21st, 2018 at 18:58 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

If you’re in the area, authorities have advised that people should stay at least 4 miles away from the volcano. Keep you and yours safe out there, friends. The power of a volcano is obviously no joke.


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How Banks Could Control Gun Sales if Washington Won’t

Posted on February 21st, 2018 at 18:57 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

Here’s an idea.

What if the finance industry — credit card companies like Visa, Mastercard and American Express; credit card processors like First Data; and banks like JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo — were to effectively set new rules for the sales of guns in America?

Collectively, they have more leverage over the gun industry than any lawmaker. And it wouldn’t be hard for them to take a stand.

PayPal, Square, Stripe and Apple Pay announced years ago that they would not allow their services to be used for the sale of firearms.

“We do not believe permitting the sale of firearms on our platform is consistent with our values or in the best interests of our customers,” a spokesman for Square told me.

[..]

There is precedent for credit card issuers to ban the purchase of completely legal products. Just this month, JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup and Bank of America banned the use of their cards to buy Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

To be clear: Those three banks won’t let you use your credit card to buy Bitcoin, but they will happily let you use it to buy an AR-15-style semiautomatic rifle


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Newt Gingrich Says Arming Teachers Only Long-Term Solution to School Shootings

Posted on February 21st, 2018 at 15:11 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

It’s funny when an Onion story on five-blade razor cartridges becomes a real product just a few years later. It’s fucking insane when an Onion story on arming schoolteachers becomes a Republican talking point just a few years later.


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Picking apart the crashing iOS string

Posted on February 19th, 2018 at 10:29 by John Sinteur in category: News

Okay, I guess I learned a few new things today…

 

[Quote:]

Indic scripts are abugidas; which means that their “letters” are consonants, which you can attach diacritics to to change the vowel. By default, consonants have a base vowel. So, for example, क is “kuh” (kə, often transcribed as “ka”), but I can change the vowel to make it के (the “ka” in “okay”) का (“kaa”, like “car”).

Usually, the default vowel is the ə sound, though not always (in Bengali it’s more of an o sound).

Because of the “default” vowel, you need a way to combine consonants. For example, if you wished to write the word “ski”, you can’t write it as स + की (sa + ki = “saki”), you must write it as स्की. What’s happened here is that the स got its vowel “killed”, and got tacked on to the की to form a consonant cluster ligature.

You can also write this as स्‌की . That little tail you see on the स is known as a “virama”; it basically means “remove this vowel”. Explicit viramas are sometimes used when there’s no easy way to form a ligature, e.g. in ङ्‌ठ because there is no simple way to ligatureify ङ into ठ. Some scripts also prefer explicit viramas, e.g. “ski” in Malayalam is written as സ്കീ, where the little crescent is the explicit virama.

In unicode, the virama character is always used to form a consonant cluster. So स्की was written as <स,  ्, क,  ी>, or <sa, virama, ka, i>. If the font supports the cluster, it will show up as a ligature, otherwise it will use an explicit virama.

For Devanagari and Bengali, usually, in a consonant cluster the first consonant is munged a bit and the second consonant stays intact. There are exceptions – sometimes they’ll form an entirely new glyph (क + ष = क्ष), and sometimes both glyphs will change (ड + ड = ड्ड, द + म = द्म, द + ब = द्ब).


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Your moment of zen

Posted on February 18th, 2018 at 19:00 by John Sinteur in category: News

Bathtime bliss


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Comments:

  1. If only my kids could be like this. I mean I would take an hour a day n be happy!

  2. Dogs boiled in their skins? I’m dubious about the culinary value of that. Does it make them easier to peel or something?

Every Member of Congress Who Took Money From the NRA and Tweeted ‘Thoughts and Prayers’ to Parkland

Posted on February 17th, 2018 at 23:30 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

Here are all the lawmakers who have tweeted “thoughts and prayers” with one hand while eagerly cashing NRA checks with the other. Keep in mind that the totals below, provided by the campaign contribution tracking site OpenSecrets.org, represent just the money given directly to that legislator in their most recent campaign.

103 Republicans, 1 Democrat.


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Comments:

  1. Congress is addicted to Blood Money from the NRA.

  2. I loved the arguement that Congress should have the same health care as the rest of the nation. Shouldn’t they also have the same protection we give our children?

Man sues Verizon when his intimate photos show up on stranger’s phone

Posted on February 16th, 2018 at 11:00 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

Crommie bought a Verizon LG V20 for $167 last week in Molalla for his grandmother and offered to download her photos and videos backed up on the Verizon cloud to the new phone.

But Crommie noticed as he scrolled through his grandma’s photos the next day that there were photos of a man and woman and their child mixed in. He realized that the woman in the photos was a former co-worker he hadn’t seen since the summer and the man was her boyfriend.

Crommie reached out to his former co-worker on Facebook and called her about the photos. She told him the photos had been on Smith’s phone.

Crommie said how they got on his grandma’s new phone remains a mystery. He went with Smith last week to the Molalla store and confirmed that a manager suggested suing Verizon.

“There’s no connection between them and my grandma, their phone numbers aren’t the same, we later cleared the phone completely and the same photos came back again,” he said.

Peters said she wonders and worries if their pictures have been downloaded onto other Verizon phones.

“The Cloud” (noun) – somebody else’s computer, that you share with strangers, at an unknown location, maintained by the lowest bidder.

 


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Comments:

  1. Can’t sue clouds.

Trump Scolds Shooter’s Classmates for Failing to Report Him

Posted on February 16th, 2018 at 9:34 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

Again and again is my favorite. “The first couple times you tell the cops that this guy might be planning to murder 17 people, they’re going to ignore, you, obviously. Make sure you keep telling them. That’s your responsibility.”

Reporters, politicians, trained psychiatrists and others have issued countless warnings about this dude being an unreasonable, narcissistic, war-hungry, short-tempered and mentally damaged man-child who shouldn’t have been allowed anywhere near the White House. Unfortunately that all amounted to fuck-all a couple of Novembers ago.


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Veteran Congressman Can Still Remember When Inaction On Gun Violence Actually Presented A Moral Dilemma

Posted on February 16th, 2018 at 9:26 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

Thinking back to a far simpler time, veteran congressman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) told reporters Thursday that he could still remember when his inaction on gun violence actually presented a moral dilemma. “I can still recall how, years ago, deciding not to take any steps to address universal background checks or a broken mental healthcare system following a mass shooting felt like a real, concrete struggle,” said Grassley, a member of Congress since 1975, reminiscing on how he used to do a lot of mental gymnastics to justify his idleness on the epidemic and would frequently lie awake at night contemplating whether there was blood on his hands. “I have a lot of memories of going back and forth on whether accepting all this money from the NRA made me complicit in all of these deaths. I would sometimes get so troubled by it, I’d even ask my wife or my friends if they thought I was a good person, but nowadays, I just fire off my ‘thoughts and prayers’ tweet without thinking about it and just keep going about my day.” At press time, Grassley admitted that he was starting to get a bit bored after continuing to talk about the subject for so long.


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Trump: ‘I Am Totally Opposed to Domestic Violence’

Posted on February 15th, 2018 at 23:04 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

“I am totally opposed to domestic violence of any kind, everyone knows that,” President Trump said Wednesday during a brief press availability. “And it almost wouldn’t even have to be said. So now you hear it. But you all know it.”

“But there are good people on both sides of the domestic violence discussion”, right?


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Comments:

  1. On another very dark day after another school shooting, it his is use of
    “almost” that struck me so. I can’t get 5th ave out of my mind. Is this what he meant? He’s exempt from any shooting?
    He is a real Goliath. His illegal support system has to be removed one by one. Like he does his enemies. Twitter won’t let me post a thing or two. I don’t know why, I thought it was pretty tame but m n the extreme side of disgusted most days. I did get one off to flotus & the shithead asking what if this happened in Barron trump’s school?
    Mafia I tell ya. We have the mafia in the wh. And we will find that Donald was nearly overdrawn $$$ in his prepolitical world. And that he could see that Russia was intrigued with him. Intrigued enough to help. He accepted Russian assistance to advantage himself in a national election. He has offered Russia gifts in exchange. Trump is making 10s of millions of $$$. If he stays 4 yrs he could be in the $100s of millions.
    He has & will do anything to win. He mst be removed from office before even worse destruction happens. I think, we ain’t seen nothing yet!

  2. I do not know why my post is anonymous. Different device

  3. @Rainymyth: Until now, this kind of capture of the institutions of the state only happened in those weird places, like the ‘Stans, SE Asia, ME & Africa etc. Perhaps we were naive and there was always this vulnerability – belief in scandal and gossip, magnified by the media (for profit). This is what the “Reality TV” phenomenon has done to us. And we just can’t stop watching…

Nikolas Cruz, Florida Shooting Suspect, Was Expelled From School

Posted on February 15th, 2018 at 17:26 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

In the hours after the shooting, people who knew Mr. Cruz described him as a “troubled kid” who enjoyed showing off his firearms, bragging about killing animals and whose mother would resort to calling the police to have them come to their home to try to talk some sense into him. At a school with about 3,000 students, Mr. Cruz stayed to himself and had few friends but struck fear in some students with erratic behavior and an affinity for violence.

Well


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I’m Gonna Give You a Number

Posted on February 15th, 2018 at 9:53 by John Sinteur in category: News


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Someone Is Sending Amazon Sex Toys to Strangers. Amazon Has No Idea How to Stop It.

Posted on February 15th, 2018 at 9:22 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

Nikki’s story is part of a broiling internal mystery that is flummoxing Amazon, according to a source at the company: Someone is shipping out unsolicited products, frequently sex toys, to seemingly random customers, and the company does not yet know why they’re being purchased, and why they’re being shipped to people like Nikki.


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Comments:

  1. It’s the product recommendation AI gone rogue

FAQ: What happens when I choose to “Suppress Ads” on Salon?

Posted on February 14th, 2018 at 15:50 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

For our beta program, we’ll start by applying your processing power to mine cryptocurrencies to recoup lost ad revenue when you use an ad blocker.  We plan to further use any learnings from this to help support the evolution and growth of blockchain technology, digital currencies and other ways to better service the value exchange between content and user contribution.

Although this isn’t something ad blockers are unable to block (if they aren’t already) it is funny how they always present this as a binary choice: view adds, or do this other thing we want. They always forget option 3: never bother coming to the site again. So, with that in mind I’d just like to say: Salon and thanks for all the phish!


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Pastor was ‘counseling’ the young, naked man tied up in his car, he says

Posted on February 14th, 2018 at 9:39 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

 

In the front seat of the car, police said they found quite the sight.

A man was sitting in the passenger’s seat completely naked, according to a criminal complaint obtained by KDKA. The only thing he was “wearing” was the nylon rope tied around him.

In the back seat of the car was George Gregory, a 61-year-old pastor at a church in West Homestead, Penn., police said. When police walked up to the vehicle, they said they could see Gregory rearranging his clothing, WPXI reports.

Aaaah, counseling… is that what they call it these days?


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Facebook is suggesting mobile users ‘Protect’ themselves…by downloading a Facebook-owned app that tracks their mobile usage

Posted on February 13th, 2018 at 17:15 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

 

Facebook is now offering some mobile app users a wireless-networking app without first disclosing that it’s owned by Facebook, or that it collects information for the social networking company.

The app, Onavo Protect, provides users with a virtual private network, or VPN. Typically, a VPN cloaks the user’s identity and adds other security features, making it a more secure way to get online, particularly when using public Wi-Fi networks.

Yet the Onavo app also tracks data that it shares with Facebook and others, “including the applications installed on your device, your use of those applications, the websites you visit and the amount of data you use,” according to its own privacy policies.

Facebook can use that data to track what users do online even when they’re not on one of its websites. The company could also find out how apps made by its rivals, such as Snap and Twitter, are being used.

Facebook, which bought the Israeli security company in 2013, now points to its software in a tab in its mobile app marked “Protect.”

This is almost as funny as that time Facebook told people to upload their naked pics to make sure they wouldn’t appear online….


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Comments:

  1. What is really funny is the ‘smartphone’ is one the best pieces of spyware out there. It is also a great attack vector for malware. I was chatting about this with anti-malware company exec last night and he admitted the difficulty in securing phones. The ugly truth is there is no discernible line between malware and valid apts. And people bank on these devices!

  2. > there is no discernible line between malware and valid apps

    The Apple App Store combined with iOS security updates seem to be a pretty good line between me and malware. Say what you will about lock-in and walled garden, but this is a benefit and one that’s hard to produce in a less locked-down environment.

  3. Yes there is. And at the same time, it’s a risk

German court rules Facebook use of personal data illegal

Posted on February 12th, 2018 at 22:14 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

A German consumer rights group said on Monday that a court had found Facebook’s use of personal data to be illegal because the U.S. social media platform did not adequately secure the informed consent of its users.

The verdict, from a Berlin regional court, comes as Big Tech faces increasing scrutiny in Germany over its handling of sensitive personal data that enables it to micro-target online advertising.

The Federation of German Consumer Organisations (vzvb) said that Facebook’s default settings and some of its terms of service were in breach of consumer law, and that the court had found parts of the consent to data usage to be invalid.

“Facebook hides default settings that are not privacy-friendly in its privacy center and does not provide sufficient information about it when users register,” said Heiko Duenkel, litigation policy officer at the vzvb.

“This does not meet the requirement for informed consent.” The vzvb posted a copy of the ruling on its website. A court spokesperson confirmed that a judgment had been handed down but declined further comment.


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A Reckoning with Women Awaits Trump

Posted on February 12th, 2018 at 19:23 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

Sooner or later, Trump’s satraps and lieutenants, present and former, come to betray a vivid sense of just how imperilled and imperilling this Presidency is. In their sotto-voce remarks to the White House press, these aides seem to compete in their synonyms for the President’s modesty of intelligence (“moron”, “idiot”, “fool”); his colossal narcissism; his lack of human empathy. They admit to reporters how little he studies the basics of domestic policy and national security; how partial he is to autocrats like himself; how indifferent he is to allies. They are shocked, they proclaim, absolutely shocked. In the past few days, it has been Trump’s misogyny, his heedless attitude toward women and issues of harassment and abuse, that has shocked them most. And those who know him best recognize the political consequences ahead.

Trump’s cruel and clueless remarks are of a piece with the tactics he has used to tamp down all his other scandals, miscues, and embarrassments. Just as he tries to divert attention from his, and his circle’s, errors and wrongdoing in the Russia scandal by shouting “fake news”, by casting blame on the F.B.I. and the Justice Department, and by deploying a congressional lackey like Devin Nunes, he diverts attention from his own encyclopedic record of miserable behavior toward women by casting doubt on the accusers. This is a neat trick, yet hardly original. It has come to the point when even Trump’s closest aides know that a reckoning is coming. It’s not going to be O.K.


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Comments:

  1. I heard that there are a record number of women running for all levels of government in the USA this year.

The House That Spied on Me

Posted on February 8th, 2018 at 10:00 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

Thanks to the Internet of Things, I could live in my very own tech-mediated Downton Abbey. That’s the appeal of smart homes for most people, and why they are supposed to be a $27 billion market by 2021. But that wasn’t my primary motivation. The reason I smartened up my house was to find out whether it would betray me.


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Comments:

  1. I thought the interesting part of this wasn’t the (obvious?) privacy issues but instead the fact that once you have enough of these gadgets, one is always misbehaving, and the Smart Home becomes a perpetual PITA.

The Dash For Cash: Leaked Files Reveal RBS Systematically Crushed British Businesses For Profit

Posted on February 8th, 2018 at 9:42 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

The Royal Bank of Scotland killed or crippled thousands of businesses during the recession as a result of a deliberate plan to add billions of pounds to its balance sheet, according to a leaked cache of thousands of secret documents.

[..]

The documents – comprising internal emails, confidential memos, secret policy documents, minutes, and financial records leaked from inside the bank by an anonymous whistleblower – today show:

  • RBS managers encouraged employees to hunt for ways to boost their bonuses by forcing customers into loan restructuring in order to extract heavy fees as part of a profit drive nicknamed “Project Dash for Cash”.
  • Firms that had never missed a loan payment were pushed into GRG under the bank’s secret policies for reasons that had nothing to do with financial distress, including for telling RBS they wanted to leave the bank, falling out with managers, or threatening to sue over mistreatment.
  • Once in GRG, firms were hit with crippling fees, fines, and interest rate hikes that could run into seven figures, helping to net the restructuring unit a profit of more than a billion pounds in a single year.
  • Contrary to claims by the bank, there were no Chinese walls between GRG and West Register bosses, who sat together on both the controlling committee that held sway over which businesses were transferred into the restructuring unit and the property acquisition committee that signed off the bank’s bids for their distressed assets. Auditors repeatedly warned about perceived conflicts of interest in GRG.
  • The property division, which amassed assets worth £3.3 billion during the crisis, was passed information that was not available to other bidders when it wanted to acquire properties from businesses in GRG. In contrast to what RBS executives told parliament, properties could be sold to West Register without being advertised on the open market.
  • Staff were told to conceal conflicts of interest from customers when demanding cheap shares in their businesses or stakes in their properties.

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John Perry Barlow, Internet Pioneer, 1947-2018

Posted on February 8th, 2018 at 9:22 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

 

With a broken heart I have to announce that EFF’s founder, visionary, and our ongoing inspiration, John Perry Barlow, passed away quietly in his sleep this morning. We will miss Barlow and his wisdom for decades to come, and he will always be an integral part of EFF.

It is no exaggeration to say that major parts of the Internet we all know and love today exist and thrive because of Barlow’s vision and leadership. He always saw the Internet as a fundamental place of freedom, where voices long silenced can find an audience and people can connect with others regardless of physical distance.


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This Trump Adviser Has a Plan for Avoiding the Flu: Be Christian

Posted on February 7th, 2018 at 22:39 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

Texas minister Gloria Copeland, who explained, via Politico, why Christians are immune to the flu virus:

Texas minister Gloria Copeland, who sat on the Trump campaign’s evangelical executive advisory board, denied the country is in the midst of a severe flu outbreak in a Facebook video that went viral because, “Jesus himself is our flu shot. He redeemed us from the curse of the flu.”

“We have a duck season, a deer season, but we don’t have a flu season and don’t receive it when someone threatens you with ‘everybody is getting the flu,'” Copeland added. “We’ve already had our shot: He bore our sicknesses and carried our diseases. That’s what we stand on. And by his stripes we are healed.”

Notice Copeland’s quick signal to the faithful that she does believe in hunting—just like Jesus taught. It’s all part of the worldview. Politico helpfully adds that public health professionals disagree with Copeland’s assessment, as will any of her followers who end up getting influenza. Every day there is new evidence this administration and its allies have (way) more than their fair share of outright cranks and dangerous anti-science zealots. After all, the president once outed himself as an anti-vaxxer and said global warming was a hoax manufactured by the Chinese. In that rich vein lies Attorney General Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III, whose views on drug policy are best summarized as “1980s school principal caught in a time warp.”


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Comments:

  1. Well, I suppose they make a useful control group.

  2. Not really a useful control group. As the comedian said, “there’s no cure for stupid”.

  3. It’s always amazing to me that such ‘devout’ Christians manage to break their own religion’s tenets. Matthew 4:7 “You shall not put the Lord, your God, to the test.”
    “I have faith, therefore God will not allow me to (INSERT CONDITION HERE – get the flu, in this case).” is pretty much the textbook definition of putting God to the test.
    That rich Christians take the view that THEY, being rich, are right with God and the poor, being poor, are, by definition of their being poor, are not right with God, doesn’t surprise me but why do so many Americans so notably fail to call them on their very UNchristian views? The bible talks on many occasions about helping the poor to be… not-poor.

To know Donald Trump’s faith is to understand his politics

Posted on February 7th, 2018 at 19:15 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

Start with his inauguration ceremony. Pastor Paula White was one of the clergy nominated to pray for Trump on the day. A televangelist and exponent of the”health, wealth and prosperity” movement, she preaches the “prosperity gospel”, an unorthodox approach to Christianity that says God wants people to be rich, and that he makes them wealthy as a sign of his blessing. So the richer you are, the more obvious it is that God loves you, and the stronger your faith is.

White teaches that God rewards “faithful” people who invest in His promised providence. You invest by making deposits – faith, prayers and gifts of money – to God (the church, naturally, is the “steward” of your financial gifts). So if you want to be healthy and wealthy, all you need to do is give, and then believe, and all your heart’s desires will be realised. The more you invest, the greater the likely rewards.

We need our leaders to be social visionaries, political realists and exemplars of virtue and integrity. Trump, as we know, is wanting in each and every one of these departments. Over the next few years of Trump’s presidency, ennui and disenchantment will set in among hardcore supporters. They will eventually become the faithless followers. Too many investors will want a return. And when there are no new gullible recruits, Ponzi schemes, even political ones, unravel.


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Comments:

  1. The New Testament, King Trump version.

The Internet

Posted on February 7th, 2018 at 11:45 by John Sinteur in category: News


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Comments:

  1. What we have here is a failure to Think, not Communicate.

  2. C’mon, they are just playing with her. She is messaging them from within one of the Applebee’s locations. For *sure* they know exactly where she is, what table she occupies, how big her party is, what she ordered, what her home address is, how often she comes there and whether little Jason is inside or not. They just cannot admit to it even though Donna has already accepted she has not privacy.

The Median Young Family Has Nearly Zero Wealth

Posted on February 7th, 2018 at 0:18 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

Using the Survey of Consumer Finances, I calculated various wealth series for young families with heads below the age of 35.

Here is median net worth for young families. I include both the net worth concept used by the Federal Reserve and a modified net worth concept that excludes vehicles. Insofar as vehicles are rapidly depreciating consumer durables, many argue that they should not be counted as assets for these purposes. Without these vehicles, the median young family had a net worth of $1,250 in 2016. This was down from the $7,846 peak in 1995.


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Comments:

  1. Oh, when they mentioned vehicles, I thought they were talking about launching a fancy sportscar into space…

  2. I guess NASA’s payloads were too valuable to risk failure. You would have though some High School students could come up with something useful to put on Mars. I guess it answers the question,”Is there intelligent life on Earth?”


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