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08.29.15

Links 29/8/2015: NetworkManager 1.0.6, Systemd Merges “su” Command Replacement

Posted in News Roundup at 7:12 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

Leftovers

  • The 20 toughest job interview questions in the world

    Impossible to prepare for; unrelated to the job: jobseekers are facing tougher and weirder questions than ever in job interviews.

    Employers are turning to tricky questions to quickly sort through high numbers of candidates, so that only the very best shine through, according to Joe Wiggins, spokesman for Glassdoor in the UK.

    “Often it is to see how you react under pressure,” Wiggins said. “It’s to see what happens when the rug is pulled from under you – how do you prepare for the completely unexpected?”

  • Science

  • Hardware

    • LG’s new Rolly wireless keyboard turns into a pocket stick

      LG just announced the “Rolly,” a Bluetooth keyboard that folds up along the four rows of keys to create a wand-like device that can be tossed in a purse or pocket. LG is hardly the first electronics company to introduce a foldable, ultra-portable wireless keyboard — or even the first to introduce a gadget called the Rolly — but it might be the first to market either as a stick for your pocket.

  • Security

    • London Calling: Two-Factor Authentication Phishing From Iran

      This report describes an elaborate phishing campaign against targets in Iran’s diaspora, and at least one Western activist. The ongoing attacks attempt to circumvent the extra protections conferred by two-factor authentication in Gmail, and rely heavily on phone-call based phishing and “real time” login attempts by the attackers. Most of the attacks begin with a phone call from a UK phone number, with attackers speaking in either English or Farsi.

      The attacks point to extensive knowledge of the targets’ activities, and share infrastructure and tactics with campaigns previously linked to Iranian threat actors. We have documented a growing number of these attacks, and have received reports that we cannot confirm of targets and victims of highly similar attacks, including in Iran. The report includes extra detail to help potential targets recognize similar attacks. The report closes with some security suggestions, highlighting the importance of two-factor authentication.

    • Ins0mnia: Unlimited Background Time and Covert Execution on Non-Jailbroken iOS Devices

      FireEye mobile researchers discovered a security vulnerability that allowed an iOS application to continue to run, for an unlimited amount of time, even if the application was terminated by the user and not visible in the task switcher. This flaw allowed any iOS application to bypass Apple background restrictions. We call this vulnerability Ins0mnia.

    • Why is the smart home insecure? Because almost nobody cares

      It’s easy to laugh-and-point at Samsung over its latest smart-thing disaster: after all, it should have already learned its lesson from the Smart TV debacle, right?

      Except, of course, that wherever you see “Smart Home”, “Internet of Things”, “cloud” and “connected” in the same press release, there’s a security debacle coming. It might be Nest, WeMo, security systems, or home gateways – but it’s all the same.

    • Critical PayPal XSS vulnerability left accounts open to attack

      PayPal has patched a security vulnerability which could have been used by hackers to steal users’ login details, as well as to access unencrypted credit card information. A cross site scripting bug was discovered by Egyptian ‘vulnerabilities hunter’ Ebrahim Hegazy — ironically on PayPal’s Secure Payments subdomain.

    • Important Notice Regarding Public Availability of Stable Patches

      Grsecurity has existed for over 14 years now. During this time it has been the premier solution for hardening Linux against security exploits and served as a role model for many mainstream commercial applications elsewhere. All modern OSes took our lead and implemented to varying degrees a number of security defenses we pioneered; some have even been burned into silicon in newer processors. Over the past decade, these defenses (a small portion of those we’ve created and have yet to release) have single-handedly caused the greatest increase in security for users worldwide.

    • Finland detains Russian accused of U.S. malware crimes

      Finland confirmed on Thursday it has detained a Russian citizen, Maxim Senakh, at the request of U.S. federal authorities on computer fraud charges, in a move that Russia calls illegal.

    • Finland confirms arrest of Russian citizen accused of crimes in the US

      Finnish authorities have confirmed the detention of Maxim Senakh, a Russian citizen accused of committing malware crimes in the US. The Russian Foreign Ministry has expressed concern and called on Finland to respect international law.

    • More than 80% of healthcare IT leaders say their systems have been compromised

      Eighty-one percent of healthcare executives say their organizations have been compromised by at least one malware, botnet or other kind of cyberattack during the past two years, according to a survey by KPMG.

      The KPMG report also states that only half of those executives feel that they are adequately prepared to prevent future attacks. The attacks place sensitive patient data at risk of exposure, KPMG said.

      The 2015 KPMG Healthcare Cybersecurity Survey polled 223 CIOs, CTOs, chief security officers and chief compliance officers at healthcare providers and health plans.

    • Removal of SSLv3 from LibreSSL
    • Kansas seeks to block release of voting machine paper tapes

      The top election official in Kansas has asked a Sedgwick County judge to block the release of voting machine tapes sought by a Wichita mathematician who is researching statistical anomalies favoring Republicans in counts coming from large precincts in the November 2014 general election.

    • Friday’s security updates
    • Security updates for Thursday
    • nsenter gains SELinux support

      nsenter is a program that allows you to run program with namespaces of other processes

    • Iceland boosts ICT security measures, shares policy

      Iceland aims to shore up the security of its ICT infrastructure by raising awareness and increasing resilience. And next to updating its legislation, Iceland will also bolster the police’s capabilities to tackle cybercrime.

    • A Project to Guarantee Better Security for Open-Source Projects

      Open-source developers, however, can take steps to help catch these vulnerabilities before software is released. Secure development practices can catch many issues before they become full-blown problems. But, how can you tell which open-source projects are following these practices? The Core Infrastructure Initiative has launched a new “Best Practice Badge Program” this week to provide a solution by awarding digital badges to open-source projects that are developed using secure development practices.

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • Declassified CIA documents reveal how disastrous America’s post-9/11 plans really were

      First, the disastrous failures of US policy in Afghanistan and Iraq have led to an unprecedented programme of declassification of documents (some with significant redactions) as part of the cathartic process of trying to understand how so many mistakes were made before and after 9/11.

      Second, the cache of cables dumped by WikiLeaks, coupled with further revelations from material leaked by Edward Snowden, has provided an exceptional level of insight into the workings of the intelligence agencies over the past three decades, together with priceless new information about the decision-making processes and about operational activities.

      And third, there has been a cache of materials found locally following the military interventions of the past 12 years – such as audio tapes recovered from the presidential palace in Baghdad in 2003 that recorded thousands of hours of meetings, discussions and even phone calls made by Saddam Hussein and his inner circle, or boxes of cassettes that belonged to Osama bin Laden that were retrieved from a compound in Kandahar two year earlier.

      This treasure trove allows us to understand the failures, incompetence and poor planning that accompanied the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq in astonishing detail, but also to frame these within the context of a wider region – and a wider period. These two countries form part of a belt that stretches from the Mediterranean to the Himalayas, linking East and West, and that for millennia has served as the world’s central nervous system. Trade, commodities, people, even disease, spread through the webs of networks that connect these locations to each other and ultimately connect the Atlantic coasts of Europe and North Africa to the Pacific coast of China and South-east Asia.

  • Transparency Reporting

    • Sweden and Ecuador to begin Julian Assange talks next week

      Sweden will begin talks with Ecuador about Julian Assange on Monday, after Stockholm moved to break the deadlock over five-year-old rape allegations against him.

      Sweden initially rejected a demand by Ecuador that the two countries establish a formal agreement on judicial cooperation before Swedish prosecutors could interrogate the WikiLeaks founder in Ecuador’s embassy in London, saying it did not negotiate bilateral treaties.

    • Exclusive: Read Julian Assange’s Introduction to The Wikileaks Files

      One day, a monk and two novices found a heavy stone in their path. “We will throw it away,” said the novices. But before they could do so, the monk took his ax and cleaved the stone in half. After seeking his approval, the novices then threw the halves away. “Why did you cleave the stone only to have us throw it away?” they asked. The monk pointed to the distance the half stones had traveled. Growing excited, one of the novices took the monk’s ax and rushed to where one half of the stone had landed. Cleaving it, he threw the quarter, whereupon the other novice grabbed the ax from him and rushed after it. He too cleaved the stone fragment and threw it afield. The novices continued on in this fashion, laughing and gasping, until the halves were so small they traveled not at all and drifted into their eyes like dust. The novices blinked in bewilderment. “Every stone has its size,” said the monk.

      At the time of writing, WikiLeaks has published 2,325,961 diplomatic cables and other US State Department records, comprising some two billion words. This stupendous and seemingly insurmountable body of internal state literature, which if printed would amount to some 30,000 volumes, represents something new. Like the State Department, it cannot be grasped without breaking it open and considering its parts. But to randomly pick up isolated diplomatic records that intersect with known entities and disputes, as some daily newspapers have done, is to miss “the empire” for its cables.

    • Assange: What Wikileaks Teaches Us About How the U.S. Operates

      At the time of writing, WikiLeaks has published 2,325,961 diplomatic cables and other US State Department records, comprising some two billion words. This stupendous and seemingly insurmountable body of internal state literature, which if printed would amount to some 30,000 volumes, represents something new.

      Like the State Department, it cannot be grasped without breaking it open and considering its parts. But to randomly pick up isolated diplomatic records that intersect with known entities and disputes, as some daily newspapers have done, is to miss “the empire” for its cables.

      Each corpus has its size.

      To obtain the right level of abstraction, one which considers the relationships between most of the cables for a region or country rather than considering cables in isolation, a more scholarly approach is needed. This approach is so natural that it seems odd that it has not been tried before.

      The study of empires has long been the study of their communications. Carved into stone or inked into parchment, empires from Babylon to the Ming dynasty left records of the organizational center communicating with its peripheries.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Naomi Klein on climate change: ‘I thought it best to write about my own raw terror’

      Naomi Klein, the Canadian author, film-maker and social activist, will arrive in Australia this month for a series of events.

    • WTO Ruling Against India’s Solar Push Threatens Climate, Clean Energy

      The World Trade Organization (WTO) on Wednesday ruled against India over its national solar energy program in a case brought by the U.S. government, sparking outrage from labor and environmental advocates.

      As power demands grow in India, the country’s government put forth a plan to create 100,000 megawatts of energy from solar cells and modules, and included incentives to domestic manufacturers to use locally-developed equipment.

    • SeaWorld criticism surges online after Harry Styles speaks out, analysts report

      It’s hard to imagine Wall Street bankers worrying about what One Direction heartthrob Harry Styles thinks. But, it turns out at least some of them do.

      Bankers at Credit Suisse on Thursday warned that Styles had sparked a surge in negative sentiment towards SeaWorld, the controversial aquatic theme park, which is already suffering a collapse in profits.

      “Does anybody like dolphins?” Styles asked his fans during a concert in San Diego, home to one of SeaWorld’s biggest parks, last month. Following a roar from the crowd, he told them: “Don’t go to SeaWorld.” Styles’s comments were captured by hundreds of people, including Game of Thrones’ Maisie Williams, and spread across social media.

  • Finance

    • More Than 4,000 Died Within Six Weeks Of Being Deemed ‘Fit For Work’, Reveal Government

      More than 4,000 people died within six weeks of being found “fit for work”, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has revealed.

      Figures released today show that between December 2011 to February 2014, 4,010 people died after being told they should find work following a “Work Capability Assessment”.

      Of that figure, 1,360 died after losing an appeal against the decision.

      Labour branded the figures a “wake-up call” for the Government, who has faced criticism for the way the assessment tests are carried out.

    • TTIP deal: Business lobbyists dominate talks at expense of trade unions and NGOs

      European Commission officials have held hundreds of meetings with lobbyists to discuss the proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) treaty – yet only around one in ten is with public interest groups.

      The world’s biggest companies in finance, technology, pharma, tobacco and telecoms are dominating discussions with the EU executive body’s trade department responsible for the proposed EU-US free trade treaty, which could become the biggest such deal ever made.

    • Jeb Bush Hits Up Hedge Funds in the Hamptons

      Jeb Bush is visiting the Hamptons today on a lucrative fundraising tour, hitting up multi-billionaires like hedge fund manager Julian Robertson to support his 2016 campaign.

      According to invitations obtained by the Center for Media and Democracy, the events over the next few days include a coffee reception in the morning, and a brunch at 11, and an evening reception. The fundraisers in the wealthy New York beach community are officially organized by Bush’s 2016 campaign–even though many of the hosts and attendees have already reached the legal maximum on contributions to Bush’s primary election effort.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Phone hacking: CPS may bring corporate charges against Murdoch publisher

      The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) is considering bringing corporate charges against Rupert Murdoch’s British newspaper publisher over phone hacking, it has emerged.

      The Metropolitan police handed over a file of evidence on News International – now renamed News UK – to the CPS for consideration after an investigation that stretches back to 2011, when the News of the World was closed at the height of the scandal.

      “We have received a full file of evidence for consideration of corporate liability charges relating to the Operation Weeting phone-hacking investigation,” a spokeswoman confirmed.

      The file was transferred on 23 July and reignites the controversy for Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp, News UK’s parent company, which believed it had been through the worst and come out the other side after an eight-month trial of former News of the World journalists that concluded in June 2014.

    • On Fox, Rudy Giuliani Claims VA Shooter’s Suspected Mental Health Issues Went Unreported Because Of Equal Employment Regulations
    • Felicia Kornbluh on ‘Welfare Reform’ Anniversary

      Would that even that degree of critical consideration would be granted to the anniversary of another disaster for low-income communities of color: the move to “end welfare as we know it,” signed into law in August 1996 by Bill Clinton. If you don’t remember the media stampede — Black women having babies for government checks! Pregnant teenagers draining public resources! — that’s partly because elite media, having championed hard for the dismantling of the safety net, were markedly less interested in tracking the human fallout.

  • Censorship

    • United In Flight WiFi Blocks Popular News Sites

      So, just last month, we wrote about United Airlines idiotic inflight video system that forces you to install DRM on your own devices to watch a movie. And, now, it appears that the company is filtering out all sorts of news sites. The EFF’s Nate Cardozo was on a flight yesterday when he started noticing that he couldn’t get to certain tech websites, including Ars Technica and The Verge — instead receiving messages they were blocked due to United’s “access policy.” The same was true for political news site Daily Kos. Eventually he even realized that United also blocks the NY Times (via his phone after the laptop battery ran out).

    • Kimmel spices up the 2016 campaign with some creative censorship

      In this week’s installment of “Unnecessary Censorship,” Jimmy Kimmel Live uses its well-placed [bleeps] to make Trump’s bragging, Ted Cruz’s thoughts on political correctness, the Jeb Bush campaign’s plans, and a fan of President Obama all sound more vulgar than they were. In this week’s installment of “Unnecessary Censorship,” Jimmy Kimmel Live uses its well-placed [bleeps] to make Trump’s bragging, Ted Cruz’s thoughts on political correctness, the Jeb Bush campaign’s plans, and a fan of President Obama all sound more vulgar than they were.

    • Jimmy Kimmel censors Donald Trump on ‘This Week in Unnecessary Censorship’

      In the clip, the presidential candidate speaks to a crowd of his supporters, bragging about having a huge … something. Being bleeped twice makes whatever Trump is saying sound worse, and yet, oddly believable!

    • Tool Makes It Easier to Evade Online Censors

      He’s already talked with Tor developers about Marionette’s open-source code.

    • US bioethicist quits over censorship row at Northwestern University

      The edition had sparked controversy as it included a salacious account of a consensual sexual encounter between Syracuse University professor William J. Peace with a nurse in the 1970s, when he was an 18-year-old hospital patient.

    • Northwestern University bioethics professor resigns over censorship claim

      A Northwestern University professor has resigned her position at the Feinberg School of Medicine after, she said, her complaints of academic censorship were ignored.

      Alice Dreger, who worked part time as a clinical medical humanities and bioethics professor, initially complained in 2014 that the school dean removed a risque article from a website for the bioethics journal Atrium because of fear it would harm the school’s image.

    • Japan’s censorship of PlayStation 4 horror game Until Dawn is spectacularly bad 【Video】

      …Japan’s method of handling violent video game content can be quite perplexing at times.

    • How censors are keeping Chinese citizens in the dark about “Black Monday”

      …mentions of the country’s economic weakness were pretty much absent from major Chinese media reports.

    • VPN down: China goes after Astrill, other anti-censorship apps in run up to WW2 anniversary parade

      A number of services used to get around Chinese internet restrictions have been taken down or disrupted in the run up to a major parade in Beijing next week to mark the 70th anniversary of the end of the second world war.

      Popular virtual private network (VPN) provider Astrill warned users on Wednesday that they may suffer service outages between now and the parade on September 3.

      VPNs allow users to tunnel their internet traffic through an uncensored server, bypassing the so-called Great Firewall (GFW).

    • Besieged Malaysian PM Doubles Down on Online Censorship Ahead of Anti-Corruption Rally

      Last month we reported that the Malaysian government had censored the website of the Sarawak Report, which first broke news of the corruption allegations. A few days later, the government also suspended the publication licenses of two print publications that ran the same exposé.

    • Giving lip: censorship, subversion and the enduring power of the screen kiss

      The humble kiss has figured in its fair share of censorship debates over time. These debates have usually centred on whether the kiss should be represented at all, as well as a monitoring of the content and duration of the amorous scene.

    • North-South tension causes internet censorship in Korea: Is it justified?

      South Korea has the world’s fastest internet with connectivity clocked at 25.3MBps by Akamai Technologies last year. That’s over two times better than the 11.5MBps measured in the United States. Such a wired environment, coupled with wide internet use, seem optimal grounds to foster free, creative discussions among peers in a democracy.

    • DDoS attack hits GitHub after Chinese police force developer to remove code

      GitHub has fallen prey to a DDoS attack this week, allegedly perpetrated by Chinese actors, in response to tools available on the site that would help users circumvent censorship.

      On Tuesday the site found that it was under attack from malicious sources, following a similar tirade against the site in March of this year. This time, though, the attacks have been much more intense.

    • How censorship divides us

      Political correctness has made us more wary of one another.

    • Istanbul fest director steps down after censorship scandal

      Azize Tan has stepped down after nine years following protests over censorship at the latest edition in April, which led to the cancellation of the festival’s competitions and closing ceremony.

    • Egypt interferes with printing of three newspapers

      The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns a recent wave of newspaper censorship in Egypt. Three privately owned newspapers were prevented from going to print or into circulation because of content critical of President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, according to news reports.

    • CPJ denounces recent wave of newspaper censorship

      The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) condemned Tuesday the recent wave of newspaper censorship in Egypt, citing the new anti-terrorism law as the pretext for this phenomenon.

      Over the past two weeks, three newspapers were subjected to censorship, due to the presence of content critical of President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi.

      A Sout Al-Omma newspaper issue was confiscated on 14 August for containing reports on the health condition of President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi’s mother, as well as reports on a corrupt network of Mubarak-era figures.

    • A curious incident of censorship

      The book shows that differing opinions — and even vastly differing ways of thinking — exist and should be considered.

    • Trigger Warning Advocates Say They’re Not For Censorship

      Many of the responses to the article focus on the authors’ status as “rich, white-skinned and well-established men, who work at the moment in business-type jobs,” (though a lawyer working at a non-profit and a career academic might take issue with a few of those descriptors). Some accuse Lukianoff and Haidt of “hysteria,” “scaremongering,” and wanting to “silence discussions.” Others offered some nuance by conceding that trigger warnings “run the risk of students avoiding or disengaging the material out of fear of being triggered,” but think the threat to free expression in higher education is over-hyped.

    • Researchers create P2P Alibi Routing to avoid censorship and government surveillance

      University of Maryland researchers developed P2P Alibi Routing to allows users to choose where they do NOT want their packets to go, thereby avoiding ‘censorship of Internet traffic and suspicious boomerang routing.’

    • Takedown Resistant ‘Hydra Proxy’ Launches to Beat Censorship

      One year ago UK police noisily took down Immunicity, a site dedicated to providing access to blocked websites. To mark this anniversary a new platform titled Hydra Proxy has launched with the aim of providing a takedown resistant service for all. TorrentFreak caught up with its founder to learn more.

    • Censorship in Ridgefield

      Censorship often occurs because of power abuse, personal prejudice and ideological differences.

  • Privacy

  • Civil Rights

    • Associated Press sues FBI over fake news story

      The Associated Press filed a lawsuit (PDF) this morning, demanding the FBI hand over information about its use of fake news stories. The case stems from a 2007 incident regarding a bomb threat at a school. The FBI created a fake news story with an Associated Press byline, then e-mailed it to a suspect to plant malware on his computer.

      The AP sent a Freedom of Information Act request to the FBI last year seeking documents related to the 2014 sting. It also seeks to know how many times the FBI has used such a ruse since 2000. The FBI responded to the AP saying it could take two years or more to gather the information requested. Unsatisfied with the response, the Associated Press has taken the matter to court.

    • AP Sues FBI Over Impersonating An AP Reporter With A Fake AP Story

      Last fall, we wrote about how the FBI had set up a fake AP news story in order to implant malware during an investigation. This came out deep in a document that had been released via a FOIA request by EFF, and first noticed by Chris Soghoian of the ACLU. The documents showed the FBI discussing how to install some malware, called a CIPAV (for Computer and Internet Protocol Address Verifier) by creating a fake news story…

    • Fox Host Complains That NYPD Officers Have To Justify Their Stop-And-Frisks
    • How a Gun in a Suitcase Became a Permanent Ball and Chain

      For carriage of the gun, she was delivered to Rikers Island and charged with attempted criminal possession of a weapon and eventually posted a bail bond of $10,000. Appearing in court in Queens, she was told by a judge, she said, “‘This ain’t Texas; we don’t carry guns here.’”

    • Online identity theft to become a crime

      As of September 4, online identity theft will be illegal in Finland. Many people may soon find that even creating a fake social media profile can be considered a misdemeanour.

    • First State Legalizes Taser Drones for Cops, Thanks to a Lobbyist

      North Dakota police will be free to fire ‘less than lethal’ weapons from the air thanks to the influence of Big Drone.

      It is now legal for law enforcement in North Dakota to fly drones armed with everything from Tasers to tear gas thanks to a last-minute push by a pro-police lobbyist.

      With all the concern over the militarization of police in the past year, no one noticed that the state became the first in the union to allow police to equip drones with “less than lethal” weapons. House Bill 1328 wasn’t drafted that way, but then a lobbyist representing law enforcement—tight with a booming drone industry—got his hands on it.

      The bill’s stated intent was to require police to obtain a search warrant from a judge in order to use a drone to search for criminal evidence. In fact, the original draft of Representative Rick Becker’s bill would have banned all weapons on police drones.

    • Here’s What Actually Gets Terrorists To Tell The Truth — And It’s Not Torture

      Hollywood has a lot to answer for. Thanks to the hit TV show 24 and movies like Zero Dark Thirty, we think we know what terrorist interrogations look like: After being roughed up and threatened, the suspect breaks down and reveals all. Mass murder is thwarted. Osama Bin Laden is shot.

      The end, we tell ourselves, justifies the ugly means.

      Even after the abuses committed at CIA “black sites” were laid bare last year by the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee, most Americans stuck to this view. Some 59% believed the CIA’s harsh interrogation methods were justified, in a December 2014 poll run for the Washington Post and ABC News.

    • The UK Hits Moral Rock Bottom

      The conduct of the political class is utterly shameless. Meantime they indulge their fantasies of stripping workers of all protection and of stopping aid to the needy, and while the politicians gorge and gorge, the poor are quietly being slipped away to die.

    • Beware of Chilcot

      I am worried that the continued delay in the publication of Chilcot’s report is giving rise to expectations that it will be forthright and damning of Blair and his supporters. Nothing could be further from the truth. Even though Blair plunged us into an illegal war with dreadful long-term consequences, the report has always been designed to be a typical Whitehall fudge. Mistakes made – errors of judgement – all in good faith – lessons learned. You don’t have to wait for it, that is it.

      The Chilcot team was handpicked by Gordon Brown – himself up to his neck in guilt for the illegal invasion – and three of the five had been aggressive proponents of the war. The remaining two, Chilcot and Baroness Prasad, are “sound” for the Establishment. Let me remind you of my analysis of the committee members in 2009. Sir Lawrence Freedman was an active propagandist for the invasion while Sir Martin Gilbert (died while contributing to the committee) was so enamoured of the invasion he compared Bush and Blair to Roosevelt and Churchill. Rod Lyne was actively involved in selling the WMD lies and arguably in danger of war crime accusation himself.

    • Katrina’s ‘Golden Opportunity’: 10 Years of Corporate Media Celebrating Disaster

      Americans love, above all, a narrative. Preferably a moral one, marked by a clear good and evil. For many so-called “school reformers,” the tragedy of Katrina, which marks its ten-year anniversary today, provided that narrative. Its stark before-and-after provided a clear A/B test as to the righteousness of their cause. Before was a “broken school system,” and after is a glossy, privatized education system.

      We’ll set aside the fact that this is largely a fantasy. Torture the data enough, and the “New Orleans miracle” can be teased out if one wants it enough. Despite studies and reporting showing otherwise, for the sake of this piece it doesn’t actually matter if radical post-Katrina New Orleans school reform was a “success,” a failure or somewhere in between. What is important is that so many corporatists think this “miracle” was not just an incidental positive but was, all things considered, worth it. Worth the 1,800 people killed and the 100,000 African-Americans permanently ejected from the city.

      The most popular examination of this pathology is, of course, from Naomi Klein, who coined the idea of the ”shock doctrine” in her 2007 book of the same name. In it, she explores how Katrina and other manmade and non-manmade disasters are exploited to rush through a radical right wing corporate agenda.

    • 10 Years After Hurricane Katrina, Media Need To See The Link Between Climate Change And Social Justice

      Ten years after Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast, environmental justice advocates feel the time is long overdue for the media to start connecting the dots between climate change and social justice.

      There may be no clearer example of this intersection than in the impact and aftermath of 2005′s Hurricane Katrina. Between the devastating effects of the storm itself, and the decade-long effort to restore destroyed communities afterwards, the region’s African-American population has demonstrably suffered the most.

    • 13 Simple But Exciting Ways To Lose Your Citizenship In Tony Abbott’s Team Australia

      The government’s proposed citizenship stripping laws are about a lot more than taking citizenship off people who try to blow up a train. In fact, they may well rip away the rights of a vast range of people for a staggering number of reasons.

      We’ve gone though the expert responses to the bill – currently before a parliamentary inquiry – and picked out the best ways to see your citizenship disappear if you are a dual national.

      If you’re going to end up banished from Australia, you may as well have some fun doing it.

      Before we go on we should note that it’s not exactly clear how many dual nationals there are in Australia but if you’re one of them, this could soon apply to you. We’re looking at you, John Pilger… Germaine Greer, et al.

    • The Future of One-Party Rule in Singapore

      At the talk titled The Future of One-Party Rule in Singapore, Dr Chee spoke about the implications of one-party rule in the past, present and future and how the next general election will influence democratic politics in Singapore. Students and faculty posed questions after Dr Chee gave brief opening remarks, leading to a lively discussion in an already overflowing room of more than 100 members of the Yale-NUS community.

      [...]

      I am frustrated at how a country this economically advanced can be so socially backward, but to think about it, it is not surprising at all. With all that has been going down in recent years (e.g. Amos Yee, the National Library Board penguin saga), the world is looking at us. What Singapore needs right now is for people in power to put their foot down and say, “Hey, this is wrong, and I’m going to fight for what is right.” Unfortunately, at the end of the day, elections are a race for votes, and few are willing to risk losing votes this way. After all, the less people you piss off, the higher the chances you have at winning. We need social change, and we need it now. Yet how can we ever have real change if advocating for it only puts people off or gets you shut down?

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Trademarks

      • Armors, Glory and… religion in a US trade mark clash

        Regardless of spelling, Armor&Glory’s market impact appears minimal. According to the story, “it has so far made less than $100,000 in revenue since 2013 — about 0.003 percent of Under Armour’s sales just last year. The company’s online store sells $20 shorts and $25 shirts designed largely for a core Christian audience, with slogans like “Be spiritually attractive” and ‘Put on God’s armor and receive His glory.’”.

    • Copyrights

      • Piracy: Hollywood’s Losing a Few Pounds, Who Cares?

        Following news this week that a man is facing a custodial sentence after potentially defrauding the movie industry out of £120m, FACT Director General Kieron Sharp has been confronted with an uncomfortable truth. According to listeners contacting the BBC, the public has little sympathy with Hollywood.

      • Pirate Bay Founder Released From Jail But Immediately Re-Arrested

        Pirate Bay founder Gottfrid Svartholm was released from a Danish prison yesterday, only to be immediately re-arrested by police. The Swede is now expected to be extradited back to his home country where he will be returned to prison, but not before appearing in court today to appeal the decision.

      • Tech Giants Want to Punish DMCA Takedown Abusers

        The CCIA, which represents global tech firms including Google, Facebook and Microsoft, has published an extensive research paper on the future of copyright in the digital landscape. One of the main suggestions is to extent current copyright law, so that senders of wrongful DMCA takedown notices face serious legal consequences.

      • Facebook Wants to Crack Down on Pirated Videos

        Facebook says it will give video creators and publishers a way to remove copyrighted videos that have been uploaded to its popular social network without the proper permission.

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