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NATO Total War Project

by Cat Sat Apr 14th, 2018 at 06:43:57 PM EST

Early last year, ahead of A Trip to the Woodshed, so-called leaders and pioneers in social media journalism began to promote an organizational effort to provide media consumers (or cucumbers) "to create educational resources." By 2 February 2018, GOOG corp-com announced that the company would will now add notices below videos uploaded by "broadcasters" who receive some level of government or public funding. To fight propaganda, YouTube will now label state-funded news broadcasts in the U.S.

"Our goal is to equip users with additional information to help them better understand the sources of news content that they choose to watch on YouTube," explained Geoff Samek, Senior Product Manager YouTube News, in the company's blog post.
Corp-com cautioned, labelling "will initially appear only to users in the U.S., and it may not always be accurate." So. How's this public-private-partnership censor feature working out? Let's look at a bit of 14 April reportage by "broadcasters" that receive some level of funding from governments that bombed Syria this morning.

Read more... (12 comments, 585 words in story)

Love, Bunny

by Cat Fri Apr 6th, 2018 at 08:29:01 PM EST

Given the tenor of the times, I thought it prudent to "re-gift" a bit of wisdom that my child (formerly known here as the Militant Electrician) shared with me. You see? It is possible to think new thinks about old dilemmas. She's at first year university now, and I'm a bit surprised about what she's got up to. I mean, it's not like we whiled away the years bloviating about western epistemology and comparative religion over Monopoly® boards. After all, she has accepted employment in laboratory husbandry (ahem) at school in order to fund the occasional journey by Greyound® bus line to civilization as we knew it. You see? No one is free, yet every one is free.

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LQD: A Civil Action

by Cat Thu Mar 29th, 2018 at 05:06:19 AM EST

App Makers Settle Privacy Class Action for $5.3 Million

A federal judge on Tuesday [27 MARCH 2018] finalized a $5.3 million deal to settle claims that Twitter, Instagram and other app makers uploaded Apple device users' personal data without consent.

Lead plaintiff Marc Opperman sued Apple and 17 app developers in March 2012 in one of five consolidated class actions. The plaintiffs claimed Apple allowed app makers to swipe their contacts data, including email addresses, from iPhones and other devices without permission.

The eight respondents identified in the article are Twitter, [Facebook subsidiary] Instagram, Yelp, Foursquare,Foodspotting, Gowalla, Kik Interactive and Kong Technologies<, which acquired the social media app Path in 2015.
In July 2016, U.S. District Judge Jon Tigar certified a nationwide class of 480,000 Apple device users for claims against Apple and Path. But last year, Tigar denied class certification for claims of false advertising against Apple, finding little evidence that Apple extensively touted data security in its marketing and advertising.
Despite Apple's much touted defense in 2016 for refusing an FBI demand for it to decode firmware-encrypted data stored in a San Bernardino murderer's iPhone. At the time Apple corp-comm stated, "From the beginning, we objected to the FBI's demand that Apple build a backdoor into the iPhone because we believed it was wrong and would set a dangerous precedent. As a result of the government's [motion for] dismissal, neither of these occurred." Within a month of filing its lawsuit, the FBI however either succeeded on its own or employed a third-party to "unlock" data stored in the specific iPhone or Apple's proprietary server equipment ("the Cloud"). That news evidently provoked the added complaints against Apple's misrepresentation(s) about software security features and services (firmware and proprietary operating system API) installed on its devices. For Apple also had published a letter of assurance to its customers that tied quality control of its products to their political interests in preventing unlawful search or seizure of such (licensed) property.
The government is asking Apple to hack our own users and undermine decades of security advancements that protect our customers -- including tens of millions of American citizens -- from sophisticated hackers and cybercriminals. The same engineers who built strong encryption into the iPhone to protect our users would, ironically, be ordered to weaken those protections and make our users less safe.

Read more... (20 comments, 767 words in story)

19 March Draft Highlights

by Cat Mon Mar 19th, 2018 at 10:13:24 PM EST

Draft Agreement on the withdrawal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community, pp 130


For your convenience, below are listed only those divisions of the draft [W] white (proposed) and [Y] yellow (pending emendments). Breaks in a series indicate passages of the draft text that are otherwise highlighted [G].

The "transition" or "implementation" period still terminates 31 December 2020. Notice that jurisdiction and data sharing issues are particularly contentious, but financial settlement is not. PART SIX is the subdivision including

the DRAFT PROTOCOL ON IRELAND/NORTHERN IRELAND, the negotiators agree that a legally operative version of the "backstop" solution for the border between Northern Ireland and Ireland, in line with paragraph 49 of the Joint Report, should be agreed as part of the legal text of the Withdrawal Agreement, to apply unless and until another solution is found. The negotiators have reached agreement on some elements of the draft Protocol. They further agree that the full set of issues related to avoiding a hard border covered in the draft reflect those that need to be addressed in any solution. There is as yet no agreement on the right operational approach, but the negotiators agree to engage urgently in the process of examination of all relevant matters announced on 14 March and now under way.

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Free Speech

by Cat Fri Mar 2nd, 2018 at 01:47:28 AM EST

The decision: New York Times Co. v. Sullivan, 376 U.S. 254 (1964)
Petitioners: The New York Times Company, a New York corporation which publishes the New York Times (NYT), a daily newspaper, and four individual petitioners who were officers of the Committee to Defend Martin Luther King (Ralph Abernathy, S.S. Seay, Sr., Fred Shuttlesworth, and Joseph Lowery) which purchased NYT publishing services
Respondent: L. B. Sullivan, one of the three elected Commissioners of the City of Montgomery, Alabama

Respondent, an elected official in Montgomery, Alabama, brought suit in a state court alleging that he had been libeled by an advertisement in corporate petitioner's newspaper, the text of which appeared over the names of the four individual petitioners and many others.
The published advertisement: "Heed Their Rising Voices"
The political activity: Protest of MLK's arrest and solicitation of funds from anyone receiving the NYT to pay for MLK's legal defense against two counts of felony perjury.
A jury in the Circuit Court of Montgomery County awarded him [SULLIVAN] damages of $500,000, the full amount claimed, against all the petitioners, and the Supreme Court of Alabama affirmed. The advertisement included statements, some of which were false, about police action allegedly directed against students who participated in a civil rights demonstration and against a leader of the civil rights movement; respondent claimed the statements referred to him because his duties included supervision of the police department. The trial judge instructed the jury that such statements were "libelous per se," legal injury being implied without proof of actual damages, and that, for the purpose of compensatory damages, malice was presumed, so that such damages could be awarded against petitioners if the statements were found to have been published by them and to have related to respondent.

Happy Black History Y3 D60

The US Supreme Court reversed the decisions of Alabama appellate courts. Who has benefited? Surely los negros, the blacks, were vindicated. Who else benefited? The New York Time Company in defense of publishing that "black" advertisement, the Pentagon Papers in 1971, and "investigative journalists" purporting to "shield" authoritative sources of true and false information [1] from prosecution by US Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald, 2004-2006 [2]. Who else? Anyone to this day who expects model principles set forth to defend publishing, anyone who agitates for freedom to telecommunicate political speech to known and unknown recipients.

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18 USC 2,371,2349,2028A

by Cat Sun Feb 18th, 2018 at 07:12:04 AM EST

Special Counsel Robert Mueller announced the indictment by grand jury of  Internet Research Agency (IRA), incorporated in Russia, its subsidiaries and thirteen named employees of the firms. Full text of the indictment is here or there.

The list of charges are:

1. Conspiracy to defraud the United States
"by impairing, obstructing, and defeating the lawful functions of the Federal Election Commission (FEC), the US Department of Justice (DOJ), and the US Department of State (State) in administering federal requirements for disclosure of foreign involvement in certain domestic activities."
2. Conspiracy to commit Wire Fraud and Bank Fraud
3-8. Aggravated identity Theft

It's here for cross-reference to observations last year that memorialized civic disorientation and disbelief following the DNC "hack" incident and Mr Trump's election. These were a wave of moral panic to proscribe "offensive" opinions, "fake news", "hate speech", and "Russian" propaganda and interrogation by US senators of "social media" publishers' business practices LQD: Censorship and A Trip to the Woodshed, respectively. Accordingly, the indictment of the Internet Research Agency ("IRA"), incorporated in Russia, relates broadcast speech (internet publication) soliciting political activity (thought or performance) of any "real" US person to illegal "foreign involvement in certain domestic activities."

A sophisticated but no less atavistic redoubt of red-baiting tactics

Count 1 is an array of criminal activities designed to "defraud" the US. Each US agency is the key relating IRA activities to its table of possible criminal charges relating to disclosure. Thus, the Special Counsel advances IRA's purported illegal "political activity" in the USA ("electioneering") under FARA, across FEC purview.

The indictment's token for an instance of IRA non-disclosure is "persona". Never mind that aliases, pseudonyms, brands, and atavars are recognizable "terms of art", that  anonymity for public internet exchange is customary and protected by common law. "False persona" and "US persona" and "online persona": Repetition of the token dramatizes IRA "use of stolen US identities", as if possessed by a patent intent to conceal the foreign origin of the firm's work product (speech). This spiritual offense is more odious to um persons or ah entities who Mr Mueller represents than the sorcery marshaled to contract or stimulate political activity from "real" US ahm persons present in the USA. This offense evidently obstructs, impairs, and defeats US federal regulation of commerce everywhere and ultimately administration of electoral requirements within the USA.

That's not all: "others known and unknown to the Grand Jury, knowingly and intentionally conspired to defraud the United States." (p 5) These persons are named "co-conspirators" in the indictment. Their origins are not disclosed as in "Another co-conspirator who worked for the ORGANIZATION traveled to Atlanta, Georgia from approximately November 26, 2014 through November 30, 2014." The IRA reimbursed the co-conspirator's travel expenses. The indictment is larded with trivial incidents like this, one may suppose, to demonstrate at least productive tax-payer dollars.

From this premise flow the remaining criminal charges against foreign defendants and commentary lifted from Democratic Party senators' testimonies in the Judiciary Committee, Crime and Terrorism Subcommittee hearings.

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LQD: Chips off the ol' block

by Cat Thu Feb 1st, 2018 at 09:40:57 PM EST

Ireland's Pink and Yellow Imperialism

Now that they have their piece of bourgeois respectability in their pocket (the marriage certificate) - why should they care about world peace? Why should they object to their hero leading Ireland into present and future wars? We can only conclude that the LGBT lifestyle - in Ireland at least - is now a firm part of the structure.

And the structure is imperialism - the western kind - the never ending, "permanently structured" kind. The western war against the world - for economic gain - that has lasted for centuries and which destroyed Ireland - now has Ireland's backing. It now has a fig leaf shaped like a shamrock and colored like a rainbow.

Varadkar didn't phrase it like this. In his deceitful words: "a Europe worth building is a Europe worth defending". And in doublespeak Orwell would be proud of - he sold the the concept of a European "army" as being anti-American.

BLM for White Folks May Mean Becoming Just Folks

In part what I'm talking about is our inherited puritanism, but I'm reluctant to call it that.  For the most part, anybody who acknowledges our puritan inheritance also shares the shallow and self-congratulatory opinion that "thank god we're beyond all that, our sexuality freed, our right to have guilt-free fun."

On the contrary.  Among the many reasons people ought to refrain from joining the hysteria of the Me Too movement is its complete acceptance of the dominant attitude towards the body and toward sex, unchanged despite the "sexual revolution," the multibillion dollar  Internet pornography industry, the almost ceaseless appeals to our sexual nature to sell us everything, saturating TV and movies, magazine covers, the Internet.  The young woman of today is arguably worse off than the maidens of pre-birth control yore who lived under the double standard that held  what was good for the gander was fatal to the reputation of the goose.

I had wondered if anyone besides myself and Bruce Dixon were at all alarmed by the latest iteration of testing that divert any doubts about surrendering to the spoils of a truly democratic civilization, one's navel.

Is it suitable for public consumption in war, if not peace?

Comments >> (8 comments)

A Trip to the Woodshed

by Cat Fri Nov 3rd, 2017 at 11:46:42 PM EST

31 October 2017, the US Senate Judiciary Committee, Crime and Terrorism Subcommittee (running time: 03:00:00) met with Colin Stretch, VP & General Counsel, Facebook, Sean Edgett, Acting General Counsel, Twitter, and Richard Salgado, Dir. of Law Enforcement and Information Security, Googgle, in a hearing of "Extremist Content and Russian Disinformation Online." What follows is this author's transcription of the chairman's opening remarks and ten minutes, the saddest ten minutes, of the interrogatory  which followed. May it be a lesson for us all.

Read more... (20 comments, 1293 words in story)

LQD: Censorship

by Cat Sat Oct 21st, 2017 at 05:38:04 PM EST

This essay is appropriately titled as the survey of actions therein are limited to state authorities, law and law enforcement, to punish (proscribe, abridge, or "chill") individual, personal conduct.
Censorship in the Digital Age

British Home Secretary Amber Rudd recently announced that citizens that view too much extremist material online could face up to 15 years in jail. Rudd related...

Read more... (27 comments, 394 words in story)

Faux Accompli

by Cat Thu Sep 14th, 2017 at 10:00:12 PM EST

Now, I will relate how I came upon the Democratic Party's faux accompli. US press rarely or never cites the bill number of legislation which they are paid to promote. If it did, people might read the actual text.

Enemy of the People has been atwitter since Wednesday about Mr Sander's bold action, popularity, and political acumen despite partisan rivalry in repealing or reforming the PPACA. He promised in a NYT OpEd to introduce Wednesday, 13 September 2017.

On Wednesday I will introduce the Medicare for All Act in the Senate with 15 co-sponsors and support from dozens of grass-roots organizations. Under this legislation, every family in America would receive comprehensive coverage, and middle-class families would save thousands of dollars a year by eliminating their private insurance costs as we move to a publicly funded program.

So. I went looking for the text of Mr Sander's "Medicare-for-All" bill.

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Exhibit 1

by Cat Tue Aug 22nd, 2017 at 11:28:10 PM EST

I did write

In the USA,the convicted person doesn't "appeal" the sentence. The convict's complaint addresses the injury (certain death) resulting from defective "due process" at trial e.g. errors in findings of fact (evidence) or findings of law (procedure) that preclude an exculpatory verdict. The remedy sought is a new trial.

Following is an example of those principles invoked by the petition, MARCELLUS WILLIAMS, Petitioner, v. STEVE LARKIN, Superintendent, Potosi Correctional Center, Respondent (pdf), reported today

Whether the governor of Missouri is or is not a lawyer is irrelevant. The same, Mr Eric Grietens, confidently stated the certainty of harm to Mr Williams commanded by sentencing. "A sentence of death is the ultimate, permanent punishment. To carry out the death penalty, the people of Missouri must have confidence in the judgment of guilt. In light of new information, I am appointing a Board of Inquiry in this case." That is to investigate findings of fact.

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EU Position Papers

by Cat Tue Aug 22nd, 2017 at 06:31:45 PM EST

The United Kingdom triggered Article 50 on 29 March 2017. What has happened since then on the EU side?

29 April 2017, the European Council at EU27 published European Council (Art. 50) guidelines for Brexit negotiations (HTML)

3 May 2017, the European Commission published recommendation, organizing a negotiating task force and citing establishing law, delivered to the Council.

22 May 2017, the Council published authorisation for the opening of the Article 50 negotiations with the UK and EU agenda of priorities.

19 June 2017, the first round of negotiation with the UK concluded with agreement of the parties to Terms of Reference for the Article 50 TEU Negotiations (pdf)

The United Kingdom, and the European Commission, representing the EU, share the understanding  that  the  following, elements will  guide the negotiations under Article 50 of the Treaty of the European Union
  1. Indicative dates for first sessions have been agreed as per paragraph 9 below . Each round will include discussion of each of the issues set out in Paragraph 3.
  2. Indicative dates are:
  • Second round: w/c 17 th July
  • Third round: w/c 28 th August
  • Fourth round: w/c 18 th September
  • Fifth round: w/c 9 th October

But you'd never know it to judge from Anglo-american press reporting on the series of non sequitors representing participation by UK gov't. agents in these A50 negotiations with the EU or their agreed, scheduled agenda.

Front paged - Frank Schnittger

Read more... (25 comments, 569 words in story)


by Cat Fri Aug 18th, 2017 at 12:58:34 PM EST

I have for many years @ eurotib.com promoted PACER (Public Access to Court Electronic Records) URL and search to provide subscribers primary source material which may or may NOT validate Anglo-merican reportage.

I've no idea whether national or EU gov't. provides similar public access to records of court proceedings in situ. eurotrib.com comment history does not obtain.

I had last promoted PACER 10 May 2009.

Read more... (5 comments, 319 words in story)

Always Read the Footnotes

by Cat Wed Aug 2nd, 2017 at 03:08:54 PM EST

5. The Financial Action Task Force

Thirty-seven member and observer states constitute FATF. You may compare this cohort listing to the disjunctive table in Wikipedia's flawed article, "Legality of bitcoin by country or territory", wherein editors cite, for example, US Internal Revenue Service treatment of property. Hold that thought and ask yourself, "SELF, does my government tax this property yet?"

Read more... (14 comments, 825 words in story)

Dear dumb page server,

by Cat Mon Jan 18th, 2010 at 01:08:53 PM EST

return our calls.

Today is Black History Month formerly known as Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. The date is a national holiday in the USA. All trading on US exchanges is suspended. Banks are closed. Government offices are closed. Schools and libraries are closed. Today, everything that anyone ever wanted to know or to remember about the history of Africa, the travails and triumphs of the diaspora, the political and social achievements of countless people is hereforth collapsed into twenty-four hours of leisure. Punctuated by predictable television programming and solemn testaments, notably that given in the mere presence of the first African American president of the United States. I'm told, he said again, Martin Luther King Jr. "made it possible for me to be here today" and urged Americans to recognize progress comes in fits and starts. Just ten percent more to the mountain top.

Mr King is dead, so is black history, some fear, though habits pass unwilling. In that spirit, I'm surrendering the drift of literature I once posted elsewhere, dumb server, and was lost.

I've got a date to play Disney-edition Monopoly with the ME now.

return our calls.

Read more... (12 comments, 2085 words in story)

LQD 12:45 - 18. dec. 2009 v.2

by Cat Fri Dec 18th, 2009 at 12:55:42 PM EST

"Læs hele Barack Obamas tale her," Ekstra Badet, remarks as prepared in English and video of the speech delivered by the president of the United States to a plenary session of the UN Climate Change Conference, COP 15. It is but a click away, but I have reproduced it, the solomonic majesty of his um, here in its entirety for your convenience.


Incidentally, here's a candid snap of the indominatable US COP 15 representative and champion of leadership among nations, Turfin' Todd Stern. There ought to be a caption below it: "Den Begriff der Tugend würde kein Mensch haben, wenn er immer unter lauter Spitzbuben wäre."

Update [2009-12-18 12:55:42 by Cat]: Emended with DemocracyNow! transcript. There are significant differences in the texts.

Read more... (9 comments, 1394 words in story)

Exhibit 165

by Cat Sat Sep 19th, 2009 at 04:07:09 PM EST

Jimmy came out of the Deep South. He had a sense of the agricultural epoch. Then he came and worked in the plant and had a sense of the industrial epoch. And then he watched automation, what we called automation takeover, remove the necessity of work from our well-being. And he saw that we're moving into a jobless world and that we had to redefine ourselves as human beings. And that's what American revolution is all about: redefining ourselves as human beings, because we have benefited from damning the rest of the world to underdevelopment.
-- Grace Lee Boggs, 18 Sep 2009

Following are excerpts from a job application form, provided by the US retailer CVS. The excerpts demonstrate in part how one might define oneself as a human being, how automated communication applications qualify and evaluate selected characteristics of human being, and  how employers approve applicants for minimum wage, low-skill employment according to an applicant's responses to the survey. More important, the excerpts demonstrate one method of reporting primary research data or micro-economic inputs that underlie econometric decompositions of statistical inferences.

I, being one, would like to find more such facts in the blogs' commentaries on macroeconomic theory, governments' statutues, and partisans' purported public policies.

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A Dissassembled Insurance Chassis

by Cat Tue Aug 18th, 2009 at 12:39:54 PM EST

One ought not assume the operating principles of all "cooperative" organizations are identical or to attribute automatically a politically meaningful determination of governance to their memberships. As illustrated by the screen capture above, the MostChoice "health coop" is an insurance brokerage. Its website facility qualifies individual applications for distribution among "exchange-participating" insurers. MostChoice may or may not require payment of a co-op membership fee at some point of the insurance application process, depending on how the state in which MostChoice resides regulates inducements. MostChoice may or may not be a nonprofit enterprise. Who would know besides state commissioners and MostChoice members, if any, receiving reports of the co-op's financial performance...

Mike operated his own financial planning firm concentrating in the areas of insurance and investments and was a Registered Investment Advisor. At the same time, Mike co-hosted the WCNN radio talk show MoneyTime in Atlanta until 2000 when the station changed formats. Mike was one of the first Internet entrepreneurs to obtain life and health insurance licenses in all 50 states. He wrote the initial business plan that ultimately led to recruiting Martin and the founding of MostChoice.

...in which they hold no interest anyway since MostChoice is evidently not the insurer writing the policy purchased. It's funny. This firm's arms-length exposure to the value proposition weakly articulated by Mr Conrad captures perfectly the toga party's determination to quash demand for single-payer financing AND industry reform.

A White House spokeswoman reminds us, fulfilment of a  promise to reform the health insurance industry does not include field-leveling actions like antitrust litigation or collective bargaining power that the "Medicare-like" coverage symbolized for uninsurable citizens. "Nothing has changed," she said. "The president has always said that what is essential is that health-insurance reform must lower costs, ensure that there are affordable options for all Americans and it must increase choice and competition in the health-insurance market."

In that spirit permit me to dissassemble the idea that national insurance "cooperatives" will relieve  monopoly conditons across the US. It's been bugging me.

Read more... (6 comments, 1553 words in story)

Wipes Tears,

by Cat Thu Jun 4th, 2009 at 10:55:30 AM EST

Or I Don't Think "symbolic analytic work" Means What You Think It Means, Mr Rubin.

This is today's SECTION [Church Lady] selection from the interboobz as written by Owen Paine at Stop Me Before I Vote Again.

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PSA: Introducing ChangeTracker

by Cat Fri Feb 20th, 2009 at 06:45:53 PM EST

"No Cookie, No Content""Oops""RRA p1-27"

ProPublica.org: ""We're launching ChangeTracker, an experimental new tool that watches pages on whitehouse.gov [1], recovery.gov [2] and financialstability.gov [3] so you don't have to. When the White House adds or deletes anything-- say a blog post, or executive order--ChangeTracker will let you know.

The latest changes are below, or sign up on the right to get alerts sent to you.

Each change links to a page (courtesy of a service called Versionista [4]) that shows the different versions side-by-side. Text highlighted in red means it was removed, green means it was added. If you notice something interesting, let us know [5]. We'll highlight the gems."

"No Cookie, No Content II", 20 Feb 2009, Versionista frame display

Alternatively, anyone can search and consult Federal Register online (public law, EOs, agency rules) and thomas.gov (bills) to compare their contents to propaganda. Or not.

Comments >> (3 comments)
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