We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Saturday, October 13. 2018
I have a headache. I have a headache that has zip codes. I have a headache that should join the circus and be exhibited. I have a headache that would make Dante buy a Spirograph and get back to work. I have a headache that can only be described with Latin nouns. I have a headache that makes the back of my eyes behave like a stripper's tits.
But I don't mind my headache, really, because somewhere in the back of my throbbing skull, there's still room for a sunny little spot that reminds me that I have never had a Facebook page.
On to the Saturday links!
I filed this essay under, "Every culture but my own is wonderful."
She's new in town. She didn't know that the Canadian government only accepts Canadian Tire Money to avoid deportation.
Men who yell singsong doggerel into microphones held at a funny angle used LEO surveillance equipment to steal money from boosted credit cards, but their thermostat ratted them out. Man, I have a headache reading that.
Speaking of headaches, sing along with me: One tequila, two tequila, three tequila, floor...
There's a new sheriff in town, isn't there? Exxon spills a little oil and some birds get gooey, and they get a billion dollar fine. Data loss causes a lot more damage. Start treating it like an oil spill, and these little code monkey CEOs will wise up fast.
You know, I can solve this online privacy problem in about ten minutes. There are stalking laws on the books, aren't there? Make them apply to the internet. One big button required on every website that says, STOP FOLLOWING ME, AND ERASE MY INFO. If they don't, prosecute them like any other creeper ex-boyfriend or jilted bunny boiler.
Please note that Facebook regards these sorts of things as an accounts receivable problem, not a security problem. If you paid them, you could do it all you want. They have an app for that, I bet.
Yes, but you can get into trouble for simply seeding more people at random. Ask Antonio Cromartie.
If my math is good, which it's not, because I have a headache, 10,000 rupees is about 135 bucks American. I think Bezos the Clown can swing it.
I'm a pretty fair writer, even when I have a headache, but this guy has me beat. How does he manage to write about something so mundane while twisting himself into manifold contortions like an origami, short-bus, Ida Tarbell? That's talent. Of a sort
Have a great Saturday, everyone!
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Re: Retracting Offer Of Laptop For Rs 190 Costs Amazon Rs 12,000
Way to bury the lede there - Amazon was ordered to pay Rs10,000 for pain and suffering and Rs2000 for litigation costs. 25 bucks in legal fees? Is that really the going rate for an arm and a leg in India?
What I liked about the hyperventilating FAA article was that it barely registered surprise over $1.68 billion in Florence aid tucked into the middle, and an order to the FAA to set up an Office of Spaceports.
> I can solve this online privacy problem in about ten minutes.
> There are stalking laws on the books, aren't there?
Yes, but when the "victim" keeps deliberately showing up at the "stalkers" place of business, it's not really stalking, now is it?
> Make them apply to the internet. One big button required
> on every website that says, STOP FOLLOWING ME,
> AND ERASE MY INFO.
The problem is that social media can't work if you do that. People give Facebook et. al. all that personal information because they want to connect with other people. Those connections, by and large are the data. You wipe those out, you wipe out any company providing a similar service.
For non-social media companies just munge a famous philosophers name, create a free email account and go. If you need MORE than that, get a VPN and use TOR.
The problem with privacy problems on the internet is that it is very much like the sexual harassment problem. That is if it is Brad Pitt (substitute your favorite boy toy) who is hitting on the female it is not only wanted but overjoyfully accepted. However if it is the plain looking guy in finance it must be sexual harassment. So in other words Internet companies would be facing charges for simply putting their product out there if someone complains.
What should be done with the internet is make everything more transparent and trackable. There are provisions in the coding language that allow hacking and surreptitious actions on your computer by outside agents/apps. It is there intentionally, perhaps not to enable lawbreaking but most certainly so that outside actors can access your computer in ways you would not approve of. This could be cleaned up.
Another idea would be to design your operating system and the internet interface to notify you whenever any app or program places something on your system or accesses something on your system. Do it in a way that can be verified and used in court to identify and prosecute those who misuse the internet.
There's another problem with Internet privacy: people always expect "the government" to step in and enforce the law to protect them.
They seem to forget it's a WORLDWIDE web: whatever they post online goes out to the ether, beyond the reach of their own country's writ; someone stalking/hacking from somewhere in, say, Tajikistan, couldn't care less whether their activities contravene another country's privacy laws.
The woman, unnamed for security reasons, deposited 62,500 Canadian dollars into a bitcoin automated teller machine believing she owed taxes. It was a fraud. A man claiming to represent the Canada Revenue Agency called her, threatening the new immigrant with arrest and deportation for tax default.
There have been similar scams in the US- though it appears that the law has nabbed most of them. I don't know how Canada Revenue Agency operates but the IRS never calls. The IRS sends letters. The IRS sent registered letters to someone at my address who had not lived there for over a decade. (The irony being is that it is easy to find that he lives in an adjacent town.) Which is how I and a neighbor knew the IRS phone call was a scam.
But a new immigrant wouldn't have that experience. Immigrants, lacking knowledge of how things operate here, are vulnerable to scams. I know of two immigrants who got scammed in real estate deals. One purchased a place at 40% above what the local taxing agency said it was worth. (Granted she still got a good price compared to area values. But still....) She didn't know about how to check on values. But the property is now worth over 50% from what she paid for it, so she is still ahead of the game.
Another, not wanting to deal with real estate agents, purchased a property directly from the owner which turned out to be a rent-to-own agreement. I am told that a real estate agent would have informed her that what she was signing was not a straight purchase agreement. Or, had she spent $150 or so on an attorney, she could have found out. When she sold the place, all the increased value accrued to the owner, not to her.
"I don't know how Canada Revenue Agency operates..."
Much the same as the IRS. Although CRA staff do make calls, they are always about fairly mundane tax matters, and certainly never involve threats. Actual tax disputes involving unpaid taxes or delinquency are always done by post, registered post for serious stuff.
You're never going to be arrested unless a very serious case has built against you and you've been lawfully charged (we're talking bigtime tax evasion here). And of course, none of that happens by telephone.
I don't know if you're willing to try herbal medicine for your headache; but if you are, they say that Valerian, Hops, Skullcap, and Passion Flower will help.
I had a nice bento box lunch on the Shinkansen some decades ago. Didn't realize how much of a "thing" it was.
I just remember it had unagi and was delicious.
I'm with you - had my first bento box on the Shinkansen about 20 years ago, and, despite never having read a many-word thought piece on them, found it absolutely delicious.