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11.04.16

Links 4/11/2016: Qt 5.8 Beta, New Systemd

Posted in News Roundup at 4:12 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Desktop

    • Linux-based personal micro PC Panther Alpha launches on Kickstarter

      We cover a lot of macOS and Windows 10 news here on the site but we don’t always cover Linux as much as we should. Part of that is because we don’t have anyone on staff who uses the OS on a daily basis. There was a time though that I used Linux extensively when I was dead broke. I built my PC’s out of spare parts and installed Linux on them to get things working.

      Back then it was a chore to get just about anything to work properly, finding the proper drivers, or even finding the right programs to open certain files took time to put together. Linux has evolved a lot over the years and many distros offer out of the box functionality that I never knew. Panther is launching a Kickstarter for a personal micro PC that is Linux-based and very affordable. Check out the full press release below and hit the Kickstarter link below to support the project if you find it may fit your needs.

    • Panther Alpha Super Mini PC Hits Kickstarter For $79 (video)

      A new Linux powered “super mini PC” has been launched by Kickstarter this week in the form of the Panther Alpha, which is looking to raise $79,000 over the next 45 days to make the jump into production.

      The Panther Alpha is being marketed as the most efficient desktop computer currently available allowing you to do more with less. Watch the promotional video below to learn more about its construction, integrated technology and operating system.

    • Lenovo issues fixes for laptop Linux installs [Ed: thanks to Techrights]

      The world’s biggest PC seller Lenovo has announced that it will be releasing a series of updates to the firmware in some of its signature laptops so that Linux can be installed on them.

      Some of the models, as released originally, could only run Windows 10.

      The models in question were unable to see Linux installed on a proprietary RAID mode that was locked by the UEFI of the laptops in question.

  • Server

    • Running MongoDB and Other Open Source Apps on the Mainframe

      Open source software is increasingly becoming available on the mainframe. MongoDB is among the most popular of several programs supporting Linux for mainframe. Yes, the mainframe. Surprisingly to some, mainframe computing is still in heavy use in large organizations. Indeed, 92 of the top 100 banks still run critical data on the mainframe, as do many top retailers, airlines and government organizations.

      But that’s not to say that over all these years, mainframe computing has remained the same. Earlier it was primarily run over IBM’s own z/OS operating system with databases such as DB2 and IMS, but also with a smattering of other vendor products such as CA’s and their IDMS and Datacom offerings. However, over the past several years, there has been a mainstream shift to Linux on the mainframe, and that trend is continuing.

    • Apache Mesos users focus on big data, containers

      Mesosphere, the main commercial outfit behind the Apache Mesos datacenter and container orchestration project, has taken a good look at its user base and found that they gravitate toward a few fundamental use cases.

      Survey data released recently by Mesosphere in the “Apache Mesos 2016 Survey Report,” indicates that Mesos users focus on running containers at scale, using Mesos to deploy big data frameworks, and relying heavily on the core tool set that Mesos and DC/OS provide rather than using substitutes.

    • AWS launches Linux container image for on-premise

      AWS has launched a new Linux Container Image in response to customer demand, designed for use with cloud and on-premise workloads.

      Linux AMI is a secure environment for firing up applications running on EC2, but due to customer demand, AWS has now made the image available for on-premise as well as cloud infrastructures, addressing more businesses’ needs.

    • Secured DevOps for microservices

      Containers and microservices have revolutionized application development and infrastructure management. They have also introduced new security challenges without solving the old ones. What are some of the new security challenges, and what can you do about them?

  • Kernel Space

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • WikiToLearn Reaches 1.0

        WikiToLearn is KDE’s project to create textbooks for university and school students. It provides free, collaborative and accessible text books. Academics worldwide contribute in sharing knowledge by creating high quality content.

        One year after founding WikiToLearn, the love for sharing knowledge helped our community to grow stronger. During this year a lot of great things happened, but we also had to face some technical and organizational problems.

      • Qt 5.8 Beta Released

        I am pleased to announce that Qt 5.8 Beta is now released. Containing all-new configuration system, new graphics architecture with integrated Qt Quick 2D Renderer for devices without OpenGL, build in QML cache for improved startup and many other new features, Qt 5.8 will be a very interesting release. I hope many will take the Qt 5.8 Beta release, test it and provide feedback for us to complete Qt 5.8. For the big picture of the release, see the alpha release blog post.

      • Qt 5.8 Now In Beta Form

        Qt 5.8 Beta is now shipping with their new configuration system, their graphics changes for the Qt Quick 2D renderer, built-in QML cache, and much more. As covered previously, some of the other work includes an experimental Direct3D 12 back-end for Qt Quick, new Qt Quick Controls 2 additions, Qt WebEngine upgrades, Bluetooth Low Energy improvements, Qt Network improvements, embedded support improvements, and more. New modules for Qt 5.8 coming are the Qt Wayland Compositor, Qt SCXML, Qt Serial Bus, and new platform support is for Apple tvOS and watchOS. There are also technology previews of Qt Gamepad, Qt Speech, and Qt Network Authentication.

    • GNOME Desktop/GTK

      • Searching in GNOME Software

        I’ve spent a few days profiling GNOME Software on ARM, mostly for curiosity but also to help our friends at Endless. I’ve merged a few patches that make the existing –profile code more useful to profile start up speed. Already there have been some big gains, over 200ms of startup time and 12Mb of RSS, but there’s plenty more that we want to fix to make GNOME Software run really nicely on resource constrained devices.

  • Distributions

  • Devices/Embedded

Free Software/Open Source

  • Open Source Vs Closed Source

    There are many differences between open source operating system and closed source operating system. Here we have written few of them.

  • Four Node.js Gotchas that Operations Teams Should Know about

    There is no doubt that Node.js is one of the fastest growing platforms today. It can be found at start-ups and enterprises throughout all industries from high-tech to healthcare.

    A lot of people have written about the reasons for its popularity and why it has made sense in “digital transformation” efforts. But when you implement Node.js, do you have to replace your mainframes and legacy software with a shiny new Node.js-based microservice architecture?

  • Automating Infrastructure Deployment for Kubernetes

    Many organizations run Kubernetes clusters in a single public cloud, such as GCE or AWS, so they have reasonably homogenous infrastructure needs, says Alena Prokharchyk, Principal Software Engineer at Rancher Labs. In these situations, deploying Kubernetes clusters is relatively straightforward. Other organizations, however, may need to deploy Kubernetes across multiple clouds and data centers, which can lead to challenges.

    Prokharchyk, who will be speaking along with Brian Scott of The Walt Disney Company at KubeCon in Seattle, shared more about these challenges and how Rancher Labs has worked with various organizations to solve them.

  • Internet-based and open source: How e-voting works around the globe

    I live in one of the most wired parts of the United States—the San Francisco Bay Area—but for the presidential election, I’ve already voted by mail. On a piece of paper. From the comfort of my living room. Between folks like me who vote by mail and everyone else who votes by marking paper in some way, we comprise about two-thirds of all American voters. Approximately 25 percent of all Americans, however, will use paperless and electronic voting machines to cast their ballots on November 6.

    Around the world though, these percentages don’t hold. An increasing number of countries are beginning to tackle e-voting with gusto. Estonia, Switzerland, Spain, Brazil, Australia, India, Canada, and a handful of other countries have all held elections through the use of electronic voting machines in recent years.

  • Events

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • LibreOffice 5.2.3 Arrives with over 80 Fixes, LibreOffice 5.3 Lands January 2017

      Today, November 3, 2016, we’ve been informed by Italo Vignoli from The Document Foundation about the general availability of the third maintenance update to the LibreOffice 5.2 “Fresh” office suite series.

    • Announcement of LibreOffice 5.2.3

      The Document Foundation (TDF) announces the availability of LibreOffice 5.2.3 “fresh”, the third minor release of the LibreOffice 5.2 family, representing the bleeding edge in term of features and as such targeted at technology enthusiasts, early adopters and power users.

      For all other users and especially for enterprise deployments, TDF suggests LibreOffice 5.1.6 “still”, with the backing of professional support by certified people (a list is available at: http://www.libreoffice.org/get-help/professional-support/).

    • Red Hat 7.3, LibreOffice 5.2.3 Released

      The Document Foundation today announced the release of LibreOffice 5.2.3, “representing the bleeding edge in term of features and as such targeted at technology enthusiasts, early adopters and power users.” This release represents 81 squashed bugs. Some of the more interesting include:

      * some hidden text not imported as hidden correctly
      * unable to undo formatting in master slide placeholder textboxes
      * Deleting all content from a cell changes font formatting
      * copying a single sheet with a chart on it garbles the chart
      * writer cannot save 3d shape inserted from draw
      * opencl: don’t initialize OpenCL when disabled

  • Pseudo-Open Source (Openwashing)

    • No, Microsoft does not love open source

      I used to follow Microsoft’s intellectual property Twitter account in order to see exactly how much Microsoft loved open source as it bragged about all the people it had coerced into signing patent agreements. I guess someone realized that crowing about that was not a great idea, because today the feed tweets puff pieces about how great software patents are and how they drive innovation (through litigation).

      The truth is that Microsoft’s principal open source strategy hasn’t changed and probably never will. The point of open source to Microsoft (or any other company) is to give you an on-ramp to its platform. For Microsoft, that platform is morphing from Windows to Azure, so of course Microsoft has dialed back its rhetoric toward Linux. If you read Microsoft hates Linux, then you probably won’t host your VMs on Azure — same deal if you have a choice between two virtual private clouds. Duh, Microsoft loves Linux … on Azure. Why wouldn’t it?

      Microsoft may even be willing to accept open source that’s tied to its technologies, but not directly to its platform. Generally these will be “children’s edition” versions like .Net Core. I’m not saying Visual Studio for Linux isn’t progress, but is anyone really itching to run .Net on Linux? I mean, after the outrageous commercial success of Mono (/sarcasm), are any of you going, “Woo-hoo, I want to write .Net code and run it on Linux”? Bueller? Bueller? Anyone?

      Now, about those lawsuits — Microsoft likes it both ways: Embrace on one hand, and get tidy patent settlements on the other. People who work at Microsoft say it’s a big company, and as with all big companies, the left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing. Actually, that would be dismal management — if “we love open source” was really part of Microsoft’s strategy.

      As evidence that Microsoft loves open source and Linux, last year Microsoft noted some long-running lawsuits that it wasn’t really winning and dropped them. Repositioning “we cut our losses” to “because we love you” is good PR. Respect! But let’s talk about real change.

    • Hard ‘committals’, Microsoft open sources cloud hardware [Ed: Yet more openwashing of Microsoft; this is NOT "Open Source" (as per OSI licences)]
    • Microsoft Contributes a Next-Generation Cloud Hardware/Software Concept
  • Public Services/Government

    • U.S. government launches Code.gov to showcase its open-source software

      The White House today is announcing the launch of Code.gov, a website that shows off U.S. government open-source projects and offers relevant resources for government agencies. By launching this site the White House is hoping to improve public access to the government’s software and encourage the reuse of software across government agencies.

      The launch comes four months after the White House introduced the Federal Source Code policy, which specifically mandates that government agencies “make custom-developed code available for Government-wide reuse and make their code inventories discoverable” at Code.gov, with certain exceptions.

      The new site already has almost 50 code repositories from more than 10 agencies, U.S. chief information officer Tony Scott wrote in a blog post.

  • Openness/Sharing/Collaboration

    • Open Data

      • Git for data is here: Announcing FlockerHub and Fli

        We are very excited to announce the upcoming release on November 8th of two major new products designed to make running stateful apps in containers easy–FlockerHub and Fli. FlockerHub will be released in beta on November 8th. During the beta, users can store up to 5GB of data volumes and share with an unlimited number of other users for free. Fli will be released as an Apache 2.0 licensed software project.

        FlockerHub is like GitHub® for data. With FlockerHub, teams can store and share any Docker data volume with access-controlled users or servers.

        Fli is like Git for data. It is command line interface that runs on any Linux server or laptop, and lets developers snapshot, clone, push and pull data volumes to FlockerHub.

    • Open Hardware/Modding

      • Mellanox Open-Sources Its Network Processor Platform

        In a move designed to seed a new ecosystem around its line of NPS line of network processor units (NPU), including its 400 Gbps NPS-400 model, Mellanox Technologies on Wednesday announced its launch of an open source initiative, and the release of an SDK, called OpenNPU. After wallowing in the shallow end of open source development for the past two years with the Open Compute Project, now the company seems ready to dive deeper.

        The NPS series is already programmable using the classic C language, and features a built-in Linux operating system. Mellanox has been pushing NPS as a platform for network functions virtualization (NFV) — for virtualizing the class of functions required to run applications and customer services on networks themselves.

  • Programming/Development

    • The Vulkan Programming Guide Has Begun Shipping
    • App developers spend too much time debugging errors in production systems

      According to a new study 43 percent of app developers spend between 10 and 25 percent of their time debugging application errors discovered in production, rather than developing new features.

      The survey carried out by ClusterHQ found that a quarter of respondents report encountering bugs discovered in production one or more times per week.

      Respondents were also asked to identify the most common causes of bugs. These were, inability to fully recreate production environments in testing (33 percent), interdependence on external systems that makes integration testing difficult (27 percent) and testing against unrealistic data before moving into production (26 percent).

      When asked to identify the environment in which bugs are most costly to fix, 62 percent selected production as the most expensive stage of app development to fix errors, followed by development (18 percent), staging (seven percent), QA (seven percent) and testing (six percent).

Leftovers

  • Hardware

    • Design for the present

      The new MacBook Pro is probably great, and most of the initial skepticism probably won’t age well. But I want to pick on one aspect today.

      Having four USB-C ports is awesome.

      Having only four USB-C ports is going to hurt the versatility requirement of pro gear, because there’s a very real chance that you won’t have the right dongle when you need it.

      This is going to happen a lot, because even though USB-C is the future, it’s definitely not the present. We’ve had the standard USB plug (USB-A) in widespread use for 18 years, and it’s going to take a few more years for USB-C to become so ubiquitous that we can get away without USB-A ports most of the time.

  • Security

    • Thursday’s security updates
    • Why I don’t Use 2048 or 4096 RSA Key Sizes

      I have used non-standard RSA key size for maybe 15 years. For example, my old OpenPGP key created in 2002. With non-standard key sizes, I mean a RSA key size that is not 2048 or 4096. I do this when I generate OpenPGP/SSH keys (using GnuPG with a smartcard like this) and PKIX certificates (using GnuTLS or OpenSSL, e.g. for XMPP or for HTTPS). People sometimes ask me why. I haven’t seen anyone talk about this, or provide a writeup, that is consistent with my views. So I wanted to write about my motivation, so that it is easy for me to refer to, and hopefully to inspire others to think similarily. Or to provoke discussion and disagreement — that’s fine, and hopefully I will learn something.

    • Black Hat Europe: IoT devices can hack phones

      The Internet of things (IoT) has already been used to launch the biggest DDoS attacks ever, but now it represents a potential path for attackers to compromise cell phones.

      Flaws in Belkin WeMo devices – electrical switches, cameras, light bulbs, coffee makers, air purifiers, etc. – enabled Invincea Labs researchers to not only hack into the devices, but to use that access to attack an Android phone running the app that controls the WeMo devices.

      “This is the first instance we’ve seen of IoT hacking something else,” says researcher Scott Tenaglia, who pledges to look for other vulnerable devices that might be abused to carry out similar attacks.

    • Why Light Bulbs May Be the Next Hacker Target

      The so-called Internet of Things, its proponents argue, offers many benefits: energy efficiency, technology so convenient it can anticipate what you want, even reduced congestion on the roads.

      Now here’s the bad news: Putting a bunch of wirelessly connected devices in one area could prove irresistible to hackers. And it could allow them to spread malicious code through the air, like a flu virus on an airplane.

      Researchers report in a paper to be made public on Thursday that they have uncovered a flaw in a wireless technology that is often included in smart home devices like lights, switches, locks, thermostats and many of the components of the much-ballyhooed “smart home” of the future.

      The researchers focused on the Philips Hue smart light bulb and found that the wireless flaw could allow hackers to take control of the light bulbs, according to researchers at the Weizmann Institute of Science near Tel Aviv and Dalhousie University in Halifax, Canada.

    • Microsoft extends EMET end of life date

      Microsoft will continue to support and provide security patches for its Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit security software for Windows until July 31 2018, after taking customer feedback into account.

      EMET is a security utility software popular with enterprise customers running supported versions of Windows. It uses mitigation techniques to block attackers from exploiting vulnerabilities in software.

    • Linux/Moose is loose: Analysis finds IoT botnet malware favors Instagram fraud
    • DKIM Verification

      Domain Keys Identified Mail, or DKIM, is a highly regarded email security system that can be used to independently authenticate the contents and sender of an email that uses it.

      DKIM was developed and is widely deployed as an email server anti-spam mechanism, including on Gmail.com and HillaryClinton.com. DKIM-enabled mail servers cryptographically sign the emails they relay so that the recipients’ mail servers can authenticate them. DKIM has the beneficial side-effect of causing messages to become “cryptographically non-repudiable”; that is, after the email has been sent, the sender cannot credibly repudiate the message and say that it is a forgery. A DKIM mail server creates a cryptographically strong proof attesting to the authenticity of the email, which it adds to each of the headers of each email it sends. This cryptographic proof can then be tested by anyone who obtains a copy of the email.

  • Defence/Aggression

    • How Sweden develops cyber war methods at Nato’s centre

      Sweden is developing methods for cyber defence and offence in Nato’s cyber warfare centre, says the Ministry for Defence.

      As hacking and threats of “cyber attacks” play a bigger role in the worsening relations between the USA and Russia, Radio Sweden hears how Sweden is part of the Nato Centre for Cyber Defence Cooperation in Tallinn, and speaks to the Swedish expert who now works there.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife/Nature

    • Climate Change Is Already Forcing Americans to Move

      Loraine Helber runs the public housing authority in Punta Gorda, Florida, a city of 18,000 just north of Fort Myers at the mouth of the Peace River. In March, she hopes to celebrate a milestone: the opening of new apartments for the elderly, replacing about 80 units destroyed by the hurricane.

      But the storm that destroyed the original public housing wasn’t Hurricane Matthew; it was Hurricane Charley, 12 years ago. Neither the insurance company nor the federal government provided enough money to rebuild what was lost. Construction could proceed only once Bank of America, through a subsidiary, invested in the new building to get a tax write-off.

      None of the people forced to leave their homes will be there to move back in. Many of them left Punta Gorda altogether; there was nowhere for them to stay. Helber thinks most went to Tampa. Yet she says Punta Gorda fared better than most housing authorities, because the units got rebuilt at all. “We refused to give up,” Helber told me.

    • Finland on its way to become world’s first country to ban coal use in energy production

      The Finnish Government has announced that it is mulling over prohibiting the use of coal in energy production by 2030.

      Olli Rehn (Centre), the Minister of Economic Affairs, revealed in an interview with Helsingin Sanomat on Wednesday that the energy and climate strategy currently under preparation recommends that the use of coal be stopped by 2030 – possibly by means of a statutory prohibition.

    • You no longer need to own a solar panel to reap the financial benefits of solar energy

      For Americans, solar power can now come without the panel.

      Solar energy isn’t an option for millions of people living in cities—who have no rooftop to call their own—or without reasonable solar prices. There are 113 million homeowners in markets with competitively-priced solar power—but because of poor credit scores, 90% of them can’t get solar panel installation loans at terms favorable enough to make the panels financially viable, reports Greentech Media.

      A startup is now separating solar from the rooftop. Arcadia Power launched a community solar program Nov. 3 that lets customers buy solar panels anywhere in the US—technically, they buy a tiny share of a Power Purchase Agreement from a solar project—and pay their energy bills with sales from its electricity.

    • 2 Police Officers Turn In Badges In Support Of Standing Rock Water Protectors

      North Dakota water protector Redhawk reported today at Standing Rock that two police officers just turned in their badges to show their support for the water protectors.

      “There have been at least 2 reports of police officers turning in their badges acknowledging that this battle is not what they signed up for,” Redhawk writes.

      “You can see it in some of them, that they do not support the police actions,” he continues.

      “We must keep reminding them they are welcome to put down their weapons and badge and take a stand against this pipeline as well. Some are waking up.”

      While most of the police officers at the scene of the DAPL protests have been brutal, violent, and unconstitutionally-militarized, it is clear from this recent act of solidarity that some of their hearts can be turned to the cause of justice.

      This recent incident is reminiscent of what happened in Frankfurt, Germany in May of 2012, when police removed their helmets and began marching with the people protesting big banks.

  • Finance

    • Chinese Innovation: Nude Photo Loan Platform Adds Uber-Style Debt Collectors Feature

      Some may applaud Jiedaibao’s idea of creating an Uber-like crowd of private debt collectors, but the scope for abuse is clear. And those suddenly finding themselves on the receiving end of these amateur debt collectors are unlikely to be so enthusiastic about Jiedaibao’s innovative approach.

    • Loans secured against nude photos stir debate

      A number of female college students were requested to send their nude photos in exchange for usury loans on an internet lending platform, Beijing Youth Daily reported.

    • CETA Implementation Bill Provides Reminder of the IP Cost in the Canada – EU Trade Deal

      The Canadian government moved quickly from signing the trade agreement between Canada and the European Union on Sunday to tabling Bill C-30, the CETA implementing legislation, on Monday. While most of the attention has focused on the political issues surrounding CETA in Europe and the potential gains for Canadian exporters due to tariff reductions, the implementing bill provides a reminder that there are significant costs associated with CETA that have generated far less discussion. In fact, the majority of the 140-page bill features changes to Canada’s intellectual property rules, requiring changes that largely serve European interests.

      Mandated reforms to patent protections (in the form of term restoration provisions) and the expansion of protections for dozens of European geographical indications was always part of the price to be paid for CETA. There were concerns expressed throughout the negotiations on both issues. Geographic indications rules grant protections to foods widely produced around the world and establish new marketing and naming restrictions on Canadian food producers. Meanwhile, the patent term restoration provisions are likely to increase health care costs in Canada by delaying the availability of generic pharmaceuticals due to the extension in the term of protection for patented pharmaceuticals.

    • The vicious assault on UK judges by the Brexit press is a threat to democracy

      The Brexit-supporting press has mounted a vicious assault on the three high court judges who ruled in the article 50 case. And it has undermined our constitution in the process. The government appears to be fuelling this attack. Sajid Javid, the local government secretary, described the judges as seeking to “thwart the will of the people”.

      The judiciary is a pillar of our constitution. Allow faith in the judges to be eroded and that pillar is eroded at a huge cost to our freedoms.

      The front page of the Daily Mail labelled the three judges “enemies of the people”. It described Sir Terence Etherton as the first “openly gay” judge, detailed Sir Philip Sales’ earnings when he was a barrister and worked for the government and captioned a photograph of the third judge “The Europhile: Lord Chief Justice Thomas”. The Sun and the Daily Telegraph stooped to spraying abuse with the same lack of concern for the constitutional place of the judiciary in our democracy.

    • Sturgeon says Holyrood might join Brexit court case

      Scotland could join the Brexit court battle to make sure Theresa May does not win back the power to trigger Article 50, Nicola Sturgeon has said.

      The First Minister says that Holyrood could join businesswoman Gina Miller and hair dresser Deir Dos Santos as “participants in that case” when it goes to the Supreme Court in early December.

      A High Court ruling on Thursday morning handed victory to campaigners who said the Prime Minister did not have the right to set in motion the official notice of divorce from the European Union without consulting parliament.

  • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Presidential Candidates Dr. Jill Stein & Gov. Gary Johnson [Pt. 2]

      Dr. Jill Stein is a mother, physician and longtime teacher of internal medicine. Also the co-author of two major environmental reports — In Harm’s Way: Toxic Threats to Child Development and Environmental Threats to Healthy Aging — Dr. Stein has dedicated years of public service as an environmental-health advocate. She has testified before numerous legislative panels as well as local and state governmental bodies, playing a key role in the effort to get the Massachusetts fish advisories to better protect women and children from mercury contamination. Her first foray into politics was in 2002, when she ran for Governor of Massachusetts. Dr. Stein is again running to be the Green Party nominee for President in 2016.

    • Sweden’s business with Clinton Foundation in a geopolitical context

      Ensuing a brief characterization of ties maintained between Sweden and the Hillary Clinton-led US Department, and summarily reviewing the Swedish political and media consensus on this and related issues, I present a list of Swedish state-owned and private companies contributing in the monetary transactions of the Clinton Foundation. The question being is whether those were always ‘donations’ from the Swedish government, or corporations, or if it was an exchange of favors that resulted in investments for both sides. One illustration of the geopolitical/financial quid pro quo arising between the Swedish donors and the Clinton Foundation (or US State Department at the time) is provided by the deal represented by the giant Swedish company Ericsson. The company Ericsson paid nearly six million dollars to Bill Clinton for one speech, and, coincidentally, the US government excluded Ericsson from the list of companies banned for doing business with Iran. Another main ‘donor’ is the Lundin Foundation (Lundin Oil). The Lundin Oil Company, where Carl Bildt was a board member 2000-2006, operated mining exploitation in South Africa in spite the UN boycott against the apartheid regime [See “A Nigger is a Nigger and a Swede is a Swede…“]. Adolf H. Lundin was once asked if he would have done business with Hitler, he replied, “That I certainly would have done.” Adolf H. and Mrs Lundin were first-row guest at the White House in an older presidential installation.

    • The Dallas IRS Office That’s Quietly Determining the Fate of the Clinton Foundation

      The Earle Cabell Federal Building in downtown Dallas is an all purpose office complex, a bastion of federal bureaucracy located at 1100 Commerce St. Most people come for a passport or to get business done in front of a federal judge. But inside, a quiet review is underway that has direct ties to the raging presidential election: The local branch of the IRS’ Tax Exempt and Government Entities Division is reviewing the tax status of the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation.

      This IRS review has not generated similar waves as Department of Justice probes into the foundation, and has largely been forgotten in the campaign’s melee. It’s just not as sexy as private email servers, FBI infighting and charges of political pressure applied to law enforcement.

      But even though this examination is less scrutinized and is harder to conceptualize, it’s impact may be important. The report won’t likely be done in time to influence the presidential campaign — even though the review started more than four months ago — but it could certainly influence the first term of a Hillary Clinton presidency.

      As with anything tax related, the status of the foundation may be determined using rules few understand. And that makes understanding the work at 1100 Commerce St. in Dallas that much more important.

    • Trump Versus Clinton: How the Hell Did We End Up Here?

      You hear the expression “lesser of two evils” when people talk about how they will vote in November. Poll after poll shows a growing number of voters saying they will vote negatively – they’re against Hillary, so they’ll hold their nose and vote Trump, and vice-a-versa.

    • Hillary unfiltered

      “We view this not as a ‘clever game’ of wiki leaks [sic] but rather as a ‘criminal act’ against the United States of America,” Abedin wrote in a previously unreleased December 2, 2010 email to Clinton that laid out a suggestion for how to respond to the leak. “He might think this is a clever game today but when he is prosecuted and if convicted he will move from being a clever cyber thief to a convicted criminal and -will find out that’s a whole different kind of game.”

    • FBI Clinton Foundation probe finds ‘avalanche’ of corruption evidence against her – but agents fear Justice Department will stop her going on trial

      An FBI investigation into the Clinton Foundation is likely to lead to an indictment unless the Justice Department interferes, two sources familiar with the probe told Fox News.

      The Clintons are accused of running a pay-for-play operation out of the State Department that favored donors to their charity – a charge they have denied.

      But the feds are ‘actively and aggressively pursuing this case,’ Fox’s Brit Hume said Wednesday, and they have an ‘avalanche’ of evidence.

      A Wall Street Journal report says the FBI’s pursuit of the case is rooted in recordings of a suspect in a different corruption case who spoke about the Clinton Foundation’s alleged dirty dealings.

    • Inside the Clintons’ Moroccan money ‘mess’

      Hillary Clinton’s top advisers downplayed her involvement in arranging a lavish Clinton Foundation conference in Marrakech last year, but behind the scenes they acknowledged her pivotal role and worked to minimize fallout from it.

      After media inquiries about the role of Clinton and the king of Morocco in setting the stage for the conference, Clinton confidants, including her husband, Bill, scrambled to craft a new foreign contribution policy that looked tougher but still let them accept the Moroccan cash, according to hacked emails released by WikiLeaks.

    • The Most Revealing Emails from the #PodestaFiles, Separated By Category (Parts 1 – 28)

      John Podesta is Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign Chairman. Podesta previously served as Chief of Staff to President Bill Clinton and Counselor to President Barack Obama.

      On October 7th, 2016, WikiLeaks publish thousands of emails belonging to Podesta’s private email archives. More emails were released in the days that followed. Below is a compilation of some of the most revealing and damaging emails discovered:

    • Former British military chief: Trump presidency might make the world safer

      David Richards, an independent member of the British House of Lords and former head of the British military, said a Donald Trump presidency might make the world safer.

    • Spirit Cooking: The Most Disturbing Podesta Email Yet? (Warning: Graphic Content)

      In perhaps the most disturbing Wikileaks release to date, Tony Podesta (John Podesta’s brother) is invited to a “Spirit Cooking” dinner with performance artist Marina Abramovic.

      Dinner with a famous artist might sound deeply mundane, but there is far more to this story.

      Abramovic, 69, is a fairly famous Serbian performance artist, who now lives in New York.

    • Leaked email: “Bernie needs to be ground to a pulp,” Clinton adviser and lobbyist wrote to John Podesta

      A Clinton adviser and longtime Democratic Party operative stressed in an email to the Hillary Clinton campaign, “Bernie needs to be ground to a pulp. . . . Crush him as hard as you can.”

      The email was leaked by the whistleblowing journalism organization WikiLeaks, which has released thousands of emails to and from John Podesta, the chair of Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign.

      Joel Johnson, an influential lobbyist with powerful corporate ties and a former senior adviser for President Bill Clinton, sent Podesta a brief message in February titled “Friendly advice. No mercy.”

      He wrote, “Bernie needs to be ground to a pulp. We can’t start believing our own primary bullshit. This is no time to run the general. Crush him as hard as you can.”

      In a sudden lighter note, Johnson then added, “Other than that, hope all is well and congrats on Nevada!” Hillary Clinton had just won the Nevada Democratic caucus against Sanders, an independent senator from Vermont who ran an insurgent leftist grassroots campaign.

      Joel Johnson is an influential political operative with a long history in Democratic circles.

    • Sorting Through the Clinton Email Case and What the F.B.I.’s Options Are

      The F.B.I. needed custom software to allow them to read Mr. Weiner’s emails without viewing hers. But building that program took two weeks, causing the delay. The program ultimately showed that there were thousands of Ms. Abedin’s emails on the laptop.

    • Julian Assange Denies Russia Fed Clinton Emails to Wikileaks

      The founder of whistleblowing website Wikileaks, Julian Assange, has denied that emails leaked from the U.S. Democratic Party (DNC) came with the help of the Russian government.

    • What the WikiLeaks emails tell us about Hillary Clinton’s campaign (and what they don’t)

      It’s one of the greatest ironies of the 2016 presidential campaign: Hillary Clinton — long averse to public scrutiny — forced to deal with the theft and disclosure of thousands of private emails exchanged by her campaign aides and advisors.

      The hacked emails of campaign chairman John Podesta, being released daily by WikiLeaks, have offered unprecedented insight into the way the Democratic nominee and her team grappled with unexpected developments and self-inflicted setbacks.

      The Clinton campaign has refused to validate the emails, noting that U.S. intelligence agencies say they were stolen by Russian government hackers in an effort to affect the election.

    • Wikileaks Has Chilling Effect on Hollywood Ambassadorships

      Whether it was raising a few million for a super PAC or taking to social media, super bundlers including Peter and Megan Chernin and Tom Rothman have been there for Hillary Clinton — support that typically might be rewarded with an ambassadorial posting. But “if and when [Clinton] wins, I do think they will be extremely careful,” says Adam J. Schiff, senior vp of Strategies 360 (Schi previously worked with L.A. operative and fundraiser Noah Mamet, who once served as an adviser to the Wasserman Family Foundation and now is ambassador to Argentina).

      “Sure, donors will be considered, but the vetting process will be more intensive than ever.” Says one political strategist at a major studio: “Some [President Obama appointees] weren’t the most well versed on issues they were expected to be, and that was embarrassing for the administration. The Clinton machine will work hard to avoid that experience, especially as a former secretary of state, so a lot of the top posts will be off the table for the new players.”

      With a Republican-controlled Senate, confirmation for Obama appointees was grueling: Mamet’s took almost 18 months. And that was before the specter of WikiLeaks. Nicole Avant, the wife of Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos, was given the Bahamas posting by Obama in 2009; a State Department inspector general’s report that criticized her tenure recently made its way into a WikiLeaks dump.

    • A True November Surprise: The Clinton Campaign at Obama Justice: Emails on WikiLeaks Show a Top Federal Lawyer Giving Hillary a Quiet Heads Up

      Don’t let Mr. Kadzik’s fancy title fool you: He is a Clinton partisan. Before joining the Justice Department in 2013, Mr. Kadzik spent 30 years at the (now-closed) law firm Dickstein Shapiro, engaging Democratic causes—and Clinton causes. Mr. Kadzik’s wife, Amy Weiss, was deputy press secretary in Bill Clinton’s White House and a communications director for the Democratic National Committee. Mr. Kadzik also represented the DNC. Campaign-finance records show the two variously donated to Hillary’s Senate leadership PAC, to her 2008 presidential campaign and to her current campaign.

    • WikiLeaks: Podesta invited to ‘Spirit’ dinner; host’s known ‘recipes’ demand breast milk, sperm

      A new WikiLeaks release of stolen emails belonging to Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman John Podesta reveal an invitation by his brother to a “Spirit Cooking dinner” at the home of artist Marina Abramovic.

      “Spirit Cooking with Essential Aphrodisiac Recipes” was released by Ms. Abramovic in 1996, but the “ingredients” call for “fresh breast milk with fresh sperm milk” to be consumed “on earthquake nights.”

      New York’s Museum of Modern Art called it a “cookbook” for “evocative instructions for actions or thoughts.” Another recipe calls for “fresh morning urine.”

      “Are you in NYC Thursday July 9 Marina wants you to come to dinner Mary?” Tony Podesta says in an email forwarded to his brother June 28, 2015.

      “Dear Tony, I am so looking forward to the Spirit Cooking dinner at my place,” Ms. Abramovic says in a June 25 email sent at 2:35 a.m. GMT +2. “Do you think you will be able to let me know if your brother is joining? All my love, Marina.”

      Ms. Abramovic is a well-known artist who has performed since the early 1970s. Her latest memoir, “Walk Through Walls,” was reviewed by The New York Times Nov. 1.

      “You will need to be able to withstand a great deal of conversation about clairvoyants and tarot cards and didgeridoos and kundalini life forces and monks and gurus and ‘how the soul can leave the body through the center of the fontanel of the head’ to make it very far in this memoir,” the Times wrote.

    • Susan Sarandon on why she is not voting for Hillary Clinton: ‘I don’t vote with my vagina’

      Susan Sarandon has said she will not be voting for Hillary Clinton in the forthcoming presidential elections because she does not vote with her “vagina”.

      The 70-year-old oscar-award-winning actor, who is known for her roles in Thelma & Louise and Dead Man Walking, said she wanted the “right woman” to become President.

      Sarandon, who has formally endorsed Green Party candidate Jill Stein, explained she would not be voting for either Ms Clinton or Donald Trump. She argued it is imperative to get independent candidates up to the five per cent mark in order to start a new party.

      “I want the right woman. There are great women that I admire that have headed nations,” the actor and activist, who was an outspoken Bernie Sanders supporter, told BBC Newsnight on Wednesday.

    • WikiLeaks: Podesta agrees Sanders needs to be ‘ground to a pulp’

      Sanders endorsed Clinton after she clinched the nomination and has been campaigning for her in recent weeks.

      Other leaked emails have also shown Clinton campaign officials talking negatively about the Vermont senator.

    • WikiLeaks: Bill Clinton had ‘real serious conflicts’ with foundation work

      Justin Cooper, a longtime staffer who managed Hillary Clinton’s private server at the State Department, told other high-level aides in Nov. 2011 that he shared the concerns of Doug Band, another longtime staffer, over the possibility that Bill Clinton might soon be asked to sign a disclosure form.

      “I think there [sic] WJC may have some real serious conflicts if we start to make too many rules,” Cooper wrote, using Bill Clinton’s initials, in an email made public Friday by WikiLeaks. “It may be time to update some procedures but we can not ignore the nexus of WJC’s life.”

      Cooper’s warning came at a time when the Clinton Foundation was undergoing a corporate review given the conflicts and bureaucratic excess that had begun to plague its operations.

    • Getting a grip of Bill: #PodestaEmails29 reveals concerns over rogue ex-president
    • ‘Not for this channel’: Podesta was wary of sending intel over Clinton server

      John Podesta was willing to discuss sensitive information with future boss Hillary Clinton while he worked for President Obama and she was a private citizen in August 2014 – but he knew better than to send the intel over Clinton’s private server from his Gmail account, emails released Thursday by WikiLeaks show.

      In the exchange, Clinton, who had resigned as secretary of state 18 months earlier, asked then-Obama counselor Podesta if he knew who was responsible for an Aug. 18 airstrike in Tripoli, in which unidentified bombers blew up an Islamist-controlled arms depot in the Libyan capital.

    • Political Medicine – An Interview With Dr. Jill Stein

      I recently had the privilege of interviewing one of the brightest lights of our times, Dr. Jill Stein. Over the course of our discussion I was profoundly humbled, deeply impressed, educated and surprised, and I even picked up a few vocabulary words while transcribing this interview along the way. Here at Inquisitr I’ve often spoken about the way the press has treated Dr. Stein, so for our interview, I thought it would be nice to give her a chance to freely discuss the things America wants to hear about, without any interruption, badgering or gotcha journalism. So here she is, in her own words.

    • ‘The FBI is Trumpland’: anti-Clinton atmosphere spurred leaking, sources say

      A political firestorm erupted, with Comey and the bureau coming under withering criticism, including a rebuke on Wednesday from Barack Obama. Even some congressional Republicans, no friends to Clinton, have expressed discomfort with Comey’s last-minute insertion of the bureau into the election.

      The relevance of the communications to the Clinton inquiry has yet to be established, as Comey issued his letter before obtaining a warrant to evaluate them. Clinton surrogates contend that Comey has issued innuendo rather than evidence, preventing them from mounting a public defense.

    • FBI examining fake documents targeting Clinton campaign: sources

      The FBI and U.S. intelligence agencies are examining faked documents aimed at discrediting the Hillary Clinton campaign as part of a broader investigation into what U.S. officials believe has been an attempt by Russia to disrupt the presidential election, people with knowledge of the matter said.

      U.S. Senator Tom Carper, a Democrat on the Senate Homeland Security Committee, has referred one of the documents to the FBI for investigation on the grounds that his name and stationery were forged to appear authentic, some of the sources who had knowledge of that discussion said.

      In the letter identified as fake, Carper is quoted as writing to Clinton, “We will not let you lose this election,” a person who saw the document told Reuters.

      The fake Carper letter, which was described to Reuters, is one of several documents presented to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the U.S. Department of Justice for review in recent weeks, the sources said.

    • Congress: Shut Down Government Until the New President Restores the Republic

      Whoever wins the presidency on November 8, Congress should shut down the government, except for essential military or law enforcement personnel, on the first day after the 2017 inaugural unless and until the new President restores the Republic by doing the following:

      1. Immediately end multi-trillion dollar presidential wars that have not been declared by Congress as required by Article I, section 8, clause 11 of the Constitution. That means, among other things, ceasing the offensive use of the military to fight wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Libya, Somalia, and against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

      All United States military personnel should be withdrawn from these war zones for redeployment back home to protect Americans against foreign aggression as the Constitution envisions. To demonstrate that fighting wars only in self-defense does not subtract from our respect for the military, all rank-and-file soldiers should be given pay raises concurrently with the ending of all presidential wars.

    • WikiLeaks: Clinton Camp Brags about Hiding Hillary and Still Getting Positive Media Coverage

      The latest WikiLeaks dump reveals Team Clinton boasting about hiding Hillary for months and still getting positive stories from the media.

    • WikiLeaks: Clinton Campaign Chair Participated in Occult Magic

      While powerful political insiders partaking in ceremonies that have been described as Satanic may seem like something that could exist only in a Dennis Wheatley novel, a June 2015 conversation between Podesta and famed performance artist and occultist Marina Abramović proves such scenarios are chillingly real.

    • Clinton Aides: ‘Definitely’ Not Releasing Some HRC
    • The Clinton Campaign at Obama Justice

      The most obnoxious spin of the 2016 campaign came this week, as Democrats, their media allies and even President Obama accused the FBI of stacking the election. It’s an extraordinary claim, coming as it does from the same crew that has—we now know—been stacking the election all along in the corridors of the Justice Department.

    • What I learned from visualizing Hillary Clinton’s leaked emails

      It all started early last week. Kevin Hu, one of my senior grad students, told me that a friend of him asked if we could use Immersion — an email visualization tool we had released in 2013 — to visualize Clinton’s Wikileaks email dataset.

      The timing was not ideal for us. Kevin asked me this question when the Media Lab member’s event was getting started, which is a particularly busy time of the year. So my first question to Kevin was: “Can we?”

      [...]

      For years I have created teams that embody a unique capacity to make large datasets easy to understand. Earlier this year we released DataUSA, the most comprehensive visualization of US public data. In 2013, we released a project visualizing the entire formal sector economy of Brazil (dataviva.info). My group also has been hosting the world’s most popular tool to visualize international trade data (atlas.media.mit.edu) since 2011 (see chidalgo.com for a full list of projects). So in this environment, where I command groups with a unique capacity to make data easily digestible, and have a commitment to make data accessible so that people can explore it directly, and make their own decisions, I decided that improving people’s ability to navigate a politically relevant dataset that was already publicly available was the right choice. My intuition was that, if you were going to spend 1, 5, or 10 minutes looking directly at these emails, you would get a slightly deeper understanding of what was in them if you used our interface than the ones that were presently available. I believe that these potential increases in depth, together with the creation of tools that allow people to explore primary sources of data directly, are a contribution. You may disagree with my choice, but I hope you at least understand it.

      So what did I learn by making this dataset accessible?

      [...]

      Later, a friend of one of my students posted the news on Reddit where it went viral. And I mean really viral. It became the top story of the Internetisbeautiful subreddit, and made it to Reddit’s frontpage. It collected more than 3000 upvotes and 700 comments. But as the story peaked, a moderator single handedly removed it in an authoritarian move, and justified his unilateral silencing of the post by adding a rule banning “sites that serve a political agenda or that otherwise induce drama.” Of course, the rule was added AFTER the post was removed.

  • Censorship/Free Speech

    • Leftist Group: Saying Islam Has Problems Makes You A Terrorist

      Last week, the Southern Poverty Law Center released a list of 15 anti-Muslim extremists, including writers, intellectuals, and activists. This “Field Guide” is meant to help journalists tell the “good guys” from the “bad guys” by providing them with ammunition against outspoken critics of Islam.

      The people on this list are lambasted for talking about violence in Islam, unequal treatment of women, the increasing number of Islamist advisors to our government—including Muslim Brotherhood-backed groups like the Islamic Society of North America and the Center for American-Islamic Relations—and the growing treatment of Islam as a protected class, mostly at the behest of the aforementioned Islamist groups.

    • Alibaba’s use of ‘pig’ for new web name angers Muslims

      Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba changed the name of its travel website to cater to the younger generation, its primary customer group, the company announced on Tuesday.

      The group announced last week that it was rebranding its travel portal, changing the name of the website from Alitrip.com to Fliggy.com. The new name is feizhu, or “flying pig” in Chinese. The company also introduced a cartoon-like image of a pig as its new logo.

      “A key goal of the rebranding is to appeal to a younger demographic that accounts for more than 80 percent of our customer base,” Alibaba said in a statement.

  • Privacy/Surveillance

    • Head of MI5 goes public

      For the first time a serving head of a major intelligence service in the UK, Andrew Parker the Director General of the UK domestic Security Service, has given an interview to a national newspaper.

      Interestingly, he gave this interview to The Guardian, the paper that has won awards for publishing a number of the Edward Snowden disclosures about endemic illegal spying and, for its pains, had its computers ritually smashed up by the powers that be.

      The timing was also interesting – only two weeks ago the Investigatory Powers Tribunal (the only legal body that can actually investigate allegations of spy crime in the UK and which has so far been an unexceptional champion of their probity) broke ranks to assert that the UK spies have been illegally conducting mass surveillance for 17 years – from 1998 to 2015.

    • Mass surveillance: First it was for terrorism, then it was for drug trade, and now it’s for unlicensed driving

      As mass surveillance was introduced, we were promised it was only for combating terrorism and violent uprisings. Then, it was used mostly to combat illegal drug trade. As the surveillance is outsourced to private actors, and they’re seeking additional revenue streams, it’s now an option on the table – today – for insurance companies to access mass surveillance data to price a car insurance.

      The ACLU has a long feature article on how aerial mass surveillance footage in Baltimore is being retained far beyond specifications, but the real bombshell comes toward the end: mass surveillance data is being now offered to private clients on purely commercial grounds. It’s certainly bad enough when cities are videofilmed from above in gigapixel resolution and the footage kept forever, despite promises and assurances of the opposite, but letting the surveillance contractors re-sell the same surveillance data to anybody interested opens up a can of worms not previously imagined.

      (Did you get that? There are now aircraft with gigapixel cameras just videorecording how people move across the city, because they can.)

      It all started out with the necessity to defend against terrorism, when mass surveillance laws like the US Patriot Act were being rushed through. Then, it turned out that these anti-terrorism laws were mostly used to fight contraband substances (“narcotics”) and practically not used at all against shady people with an explosive suitcase of plutonium. And so now, we learn that the private contractors doing the actual surveillance have decided they can also sell the data to insurance companies.

    • ‘Operation Hyperion’ Targets Suspected Dark Web Users Around the World

      Earlier this week, law enforcement agencies from across the world announced an operation targeting vendors and users of dark web marketplaces. Codenamed Operation Hyperion, the move is one of the most dramatic police coordinations around the dark web yet, with thousands of people allegedly being identified.

      But how exactly these arrests or interviews were connected to one another, if they were at all, remains unclear, and a large part of the operation seems to be geared toward intimidating current and potential sellers and buyers, and dissuading others from participating in the online drug trade, rather than leading to a substantial number of actual arrests.

    • How much money does Facebook make from you?

      Facebook is making more money than ever: On Wednesday night the company revealed that between July and September it made $7bn (£5.7bn) in revenue – a 59 per cent increase on a year ago.

      This means that each user is increasingly valuable to Facebook. The average revenue per user in the third quarter was $4.01.

    • Facebook’s mobile ad boom ride is almost done, and Wall Street wants to see its next trick

      But Facebook execs have warned that the meteoric revenue growth rates are due for a slowdown next year as the company reaches the limit on how many ads it can squeeze into the News Feed.

    • In scathing ruling, Federal Court says CSIS bulk data collection illegal

      The Federal Court of Canada has faulted Canada’s domestic spy agency for unlawfully retaining data and for not being truthful with judges who authorize its intelligence programs. Separately, the court also revealed that the spy agency no longer needs warrants to collect Canadians’ tax records.

      All this has been exposed in a rare ruling about the growing scope of Canadian intelligence collection disclosed by the court on Thursday. At issue is how the federal domestic spy service has been pushing past its legal boundaries in the name of collecting data, in hopes of rounding out the holdings of a little-known Canadian intelligence facility dubbed the “operational data analysis centre.”

      Many corporations and government agencies are now gravitating toward so-called big data computer analytics that can predict patterns of future behaviour based upon records about what has happened in the past. Spy agencies are no different, and the centre in question appears to be the Canadian Security Intelligence Service’s equivalent of a crystal ball – a place where intelligence analysts attempt to deduce future threats by examining, and re-examining, volumes of data.

  • Civil Rights/Policing

    • A journalist at Standing Rock was shot by police for no reason—and caught the awful moment on video

      As peaceful protests over the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline again turn violent, one journalist near the Standing Rock Sioux Indian reservation in North Dakota captured shocking video showing herself being shot by police out of nowhere as she conducted an interview.

      Erin Schrode, an activist and journalist, was doing an interview at the edge of the Cantapeta Creek when police shot her with a rubber bullet. In her video of the incident, Schrode can be heard screaming, “Ow!” before crumbling to the ground.

    • On Anniversary of the Patriot Act, Artist Passes Out Pocket Knives at the Airport

      Last week, performance artist Michele Pred handed out small pocket knives passengers arriving at San Francisco’s International Airport to replace those that have been confiscated since the passage of the Patriot Act 15 years ago.

    • Artist celebrates Patriot Act’s anniversary by handing out “Official Air Travel Replacement Knives” to arriving SFO passengers

      Last week, artist Michelle Pred celebrated the anniversary of the Patriot Act by dressing up as an old-timey Pan Am flight attendant (she wore her mother’s old Pan Am hat!) and handing out “Official Air Travel Replacement Knives” to people waiting for their bags at SFO (she had 50 knives, but it took more than 50 tries to give them away, as more than half of the people she approached refused to engage with her).

      She had to get a “Free Speech and Expressive Activities Permit” for her performance, and the lengthy application process gave her time to figure out which knives she’d pass out: she chose 2.25″ red pocket knives, these being the kind of knife most often seized by the TSA. The people who took the knives often share stories lamenting the beloved tools, knives and other items they’d had taken away by airport security since the Patroit Act was passed.

      Pred is part of a large, multi-artist show in San Francisco’s Presidio called “Home Land Security,” which features works that critically examine “the human dimensions and increasing complexity of national security, including the physical and psychological borders we create, protect, and cross in its name.”

    • Defense tries to exclude video from trial of cop shooting man in back

      Michael Slager, a white North Charleston officer, is accused of killing Walter Scott, 50, a black man who was pulled over in April 2015 for a routine traffic stop. Scott had a warrant for his arrest, fled the Mercedes-Benz he was driving, was chased into a field, and was then shot and killed as a passerby secretly captured the shooting on video.

      For the most part, those are the general undisputed facts in a case that likely would have been swept under the rug without video evidence. Before the video surfaced, the police defended the officer’s actions. As reported by the Post and Courier, the police said that “…a man ran on foot from the traffic stop and an officer deployed his department-issued Taser in an attempt to stop him. That did not work, police said, and an altercation ensued as the men struggled over the device. Police allege that during the struggle the man gained control of the Taser and attempted to use it against the officer. The officer then resorted to his service weapon and shot him…”

    • How Video Games Unwittingly Train the Brain to Justify Killing

      Would you be surprised to learn that the first statement, suggesting remorse, comes from the American mass murderer David Alan Gore, while the second, of cool acceptance, was made by Andy Wilson, a soldier in the SAS, Britain’s elite special forces? In one view, the two men are separated by the thinnest filament of morality: justification. One killed because he wanted to, the other because he was acting on behalf of his country, as part of his job.

      While most psychologically normal individuals agree that inflicting pain on others is wrong, killing others appears socially sanctioned in specific contexts such as war or self-defence. Or revenge. Or military dictatorships. Or human sacrifice. In fact, justification for murder is so pliant that the TV series Dexter (2006-13) flirted exquisitely with the concept: a sociopath who kills villainous people as a vehicle for satisfying his own dark urges.

      Operating under strict ‘guidelines’ that target only the guilty, Dexter (a forensics technician) and the viewer come to believe that the kill is justified. He forces the audience to question their own moral compass by asking them to justify murder in their minds in the split second prior to the kill. Usually when we imagine directly harming someone, the image is preventive: envision a man hitting a woman; or an owner abusing her dog. Yet, sometimes, the opposite happens: a switch is flipped with aggressive, even violent consequences. How can an otherwise normal person override the moral code and commit cold-blooded murder?

    • ‘Go away, you shouldn’t be here. Don’t come back’: The corner of Yorkshire that has almost no white residents

      From the window of her flat overlooking the canal path in a suburb of Dewsbury in Yorkshire, a blonde woman watches two female figures walking past as they chatter in a foreign tongue.

      Both the passers-by are covered in black Islamic gowns, only a glimpse of their eyes show from the 2 in gap in the veils across their faces.

      They, like many Muslim women who live here, speak little or no English. Lots of them will have no contact with any person from another religion or culture. Almost all have been brought to the UK to wed the British men of south Asian heritage who have made this area their home.

    • The UN is morally corrupt

      A majority of the members of the United Nations Human Rights Council are non-democratic. Obviously, this is a problem – if we presume human rights to have anything to do with fundamental democratic principles such as free speech, a free press and free and fair elections.

      With countries such as China, Cuba, Iraq and Saudi Arabia in the council – one must also doubt what it will and can do when it comes to the right to fair trials, the issue of cruel and unusual punishments and the death penalty.

    • REVEALED: Rahm Emanuel Used A Private Email Server

      Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel used a private email server to communicate with Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton’s campaign chair John Podesta, leaked emails reveal.

      Emanuel, a former House lawmaker who served early on in the Obama administration, sent an email to Podesta asking him to consider Brian DeSplinter for a position with Clinton’s campaign. Emnauel sent the email from the address [email protected]

      The email address is still active, according to Mailtester.com, and is run through Google’s Gmail service. This is unlike Clinton who used a private email server based out of her Chappaqua, New York home.

    • Police Union Joins Rights Groups In Criticizing Police Chief For Snooping On Journalists

      Police unions are best known for creating distance. They carve out space between police officers and accountability. They widen the gap between fiction and reality. They often act like the loudmouthed relative with the missing brain/mouth filter you always hope won’t insert themselves into discussions about current events.

      On rare, rare occasions, they come across misconduct even they can’t condone. Every so often, police union heads act like normal, decent human beings.

  • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

    • FCC Lends Support To Google Fiber, Louisville In Fight To Access AT&T Utility Poles

      As we’ve been discussing, the hot new broadband battleground is the boring old utility pole. In most existing markets, a new competitor needs the incumbent ISP to move their gear and “make ready” the pole before a competitor can attach their own fiber. With every incentive to slow new competition, incumbent ISPs have long (ab)used this bureaucracy to their advantage. As a result, this preparation can take the better part of a year, especially if gear from multiple incumbents needs moving.

      In a recent Google Fiber blog post, the company documented the end result of this logjam. In Nashville, the company noted that of the 88,000 poles in Nashville needed to deploy Google Fiber, over 44,000 will require make-ready work — but only 33 had been adequately prepped by incumbent ISPs. In response, Google Fiber has been pushing cities like Nashville and Louisville to pass “one touch make ready” rules, which allow an insured, third-party contractor to move any ISP’s gear (often a matter of inches), provided they give the incumbent ISP a 15-day heads up.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • WIPO Members Divided On IP Agency’s Role In Implementation Of UN Sustainable Development Goals

      Countries of the world decided in 2015 to launch an ambitious agenda to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure prosperity for all by 2030. What should be the role of the UN World Intellectual Property Organization in the attainment of the adopted United Nations Sustainable Development Goals? This question, discussed at the WIPO Committee on Development and IP, is dividing countries, as developed countries argue that only a few goals apply to the work of WIPO, and others argue that there should be no ‘cherrypicking’ as all the goals in one way or another do apply to WIPO’s work as a UN agency.

    • Copyrights

      • A Summary Of International CopyCamp 2016

        Apart from speaker sessions, the “Maker Party” event took place at the conference, which is a Mozilla Foundation’s campaign initiative for better copyright reform, which is in sync with the digital age.

      • UK Govt. Will Address Music ‘Value Gap” as Part of Brexit

        The UK government says it will address the so-called music ‘value gap’ as part of Brexit negotiations. The confirmation came in response to a probing Digital Economy Bill amendment which would see sites like YouTube lose their safe harbor protections if they “optimize the presentation” of uploaded works.

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  13. Openwashing Report: It's Getting Worse, Fast. Everything is Apparently 'Open' Now Even Though It's Actually Proprietary.

    The latest examples (this past week's) of openwashing in the media, ranging from 5G to surveillance



  14. GitHub is a Dagger Inside Free/Open Source Software (FOSS); This is Why Microsoft Bought It

    A year later it seems pretty evident that Microsoft doesn’t like FOSS but is merely trying to control it, e.g. by buying millions of FOSS projects/repositories at the platform level (the above is what the Linux Foundation‘s Jim Zemlin said to Microsoft at their event while antitrust regulators were still assessing the proposed takeover)



  15. Microsoft Grows Within and Eats You From the Inside

    Microsoft entryism and other subversive tactics continue to threaten and sometimes successfully undermine the competition; Microsoft is nowadays doing that to core projects in the Free/Open Source software world



  16. Links 18/8/2019: New KNOPPIX and Emmabuntus Released

    Links for the day



  17. Links 17/8/2019: Unigine 2.9 and Git 2.23

    Links for the day



  18. Computer-Generated Patent Applications Show That Patents and Innovations Are Very Different Things

    The 'cheapening' of the concept of 'inventor' (or 'invention') undermines the whole foundation/basis of the patent system and deep inside patent law firms know it



  19. Concerns About IBM's Commitment to OpenSource.com After the Fall of Linux.com and Linux Journal

    The Web site OpenSource.com is over two decades old; in its current form it's about a decade old and it contains plenty of good articles, but will IBM think so too and, if so, will investment in the site carry on?



  20. Electronic Frontier Foundation Makes a Mistake by Giving Award to Microsoft Surveillance Person

    At age 30 (almost) the Electronic Frontier Foundation still campaigns for privacy; so why does it grant awards to enemies of privacy?



  21. Caturdays and Sundays at Techrights Will Get Busier

    Our plan to spend the weekends writing more articles about Software Freedom; it seems like a high-priority issue



  22. Why Techrights Doesn't Do Social Control Media

    Being managed and censored by platform owners (sometimes their shareholders) isn’t an alluring proposition when a site challenges conformist norms and the status quo; Techrights belongs in a platform of its own



  23. Patent Prosecution Highways and Examination Highways Are Dooming the EPO

    Speed is not a measure of quality; but today's EPO is just trying to get as much money as possible, as fast as possible (before the whole thing implodes)



  24. Software Patents Won't Come Back Just Because They're (Re)Framed/Branded as "HEY HI" (AI)

    The pattern we've been observing in recent years is, patent applicants and law firms simply rewrite applications to make these seem patent-eligible on the surface (owing to deliberate deception) and patent offices facilitate these loopholes in order to fake 'growth'



  25. IP Kat Pays the Price for Being a Megaphone of Team UPC

    The typical or the usual suspects speak out about the so-called 'prospects' (with delusions of inevitability) of the Unified Patent Court Agreement, neglecting to account for their own longterm credibility



  26. Links 17/8/2019: Wine 4.14 is Out, Debian Celebrates 26 years

    Links for the day



  27. Nothing Says 'New' Microsoft Like Microsoft Component Firmware Update (More Hardware Lock-in)

    Vicious old Microsoft is still trying to make life very hard for GNU/Linux, especially in the OEM channel/s, but we're somehow supposed to think that "Microsoft loves Linux"



  28. Bill Gates and His Special Relationship With Jeffrey Epstein Still Stirring Speculations

    Love of the "children" has long been a controversial subject for Microsoft; can Bill Gates and his connections to Jeffrey Epstein unearth some unsavoury secrets?



  29. Links 16/8/2019: Kdevops and QEMU 4.1

    Links for the day



  30. The EPO's War on the Convention on the Grant of European Patents 2000 (EPC 2000), Not Just Brexit, Kills the Unitary Patent (UP/UPC) and Dooms Justice

    Team UPC continues to ignore the utter failures that have led to lawlessness at the EPO, attributing the demise of the Unified Patent Court (UPC) to Brexit alone and pretending that it's not even a problem


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