No limits on gouging
2 July 2020

The US government is signing contracts about possible treatments for Covid-19 and choosing to put no limits on gouging.

Harvesting faster than it grows
2 July 2020

Europe is harvesting its vast tree plantations faster than they grow.

Protesters and journalists attacked violently
2 July 2020

Thousands protested in Hong Kong, and 400 were arrested. The thugs attacked protesters and journalists violently.

Every aspect of this law, and the way it was imposed, has been designed to show that China's repression will be totally arbitrary. *“If you’ve ever said anything that might offend the PRC [People’s Republic of China] or Hong Kong authorities, stay out of Hong Kong,” said Donald Clarke, a law professor at George Washington University.*

Commando disbanded due to far-right culture
2 July 2020

*German [army] commando company is disbanded due to far-right culture.*

Tropical plant species wipe out
2 July 2020

1/5 of tropical plant species could be wiped out by 2070; it will be too hot for their seeds to germinate.

I would expect this was based on estimates of heating that have already been found too low. Not long ago it was reported that the numbers have to be adjusted upward.

Removing copy of the Confederate flag
2 July 2020

Mississippi has modified its state flag to remove a copy of the Confederate flag.

Several southern states put that into their state flags as a symbol of racism.

Adham Hassoun ordered released
2 July 2020

The conman's officials sought to keep Adham Hassoun in prison permanently without any sort of hearing. A US court ordered him released, though the decision is likely to be appealed.

Sympathy card
2 July 2020

(satire) *God, Our Heavenly Father, reportedly sent a sympathy card Tuesday to 56-year-old Arizona resident Greg Harris after killing his wife.*

Take a clear stand
2 July 2020

*Progressive Lawmakers Call on US to 'Take a Clear Stand' by Suspending Military Aid If Israel Carries Out 'Illegal' Annexation.*

Annexation would violate the international laws of war, just like the colonization and theft of land and water resources which Israel has already done.

NAFTA improved labor rights
2 July 2020

The improved labor rights clauses in the new NAFTA may not do much good when lawyers who try to exercise them are jailed on absurd charges.

Bold climate plan fail
2 July 2020

The Democrats' "bold" climate plan fails even to include ending the construction of fossil fuel facilities.

The companies that own oil or gas facilities will fight like the devil to keep on using them till the last possible moment. To allow continued "investment" in destroying civilization means creating additional enemies for later stages of the fight to save civilization.

The Case for Medicare for All
2 July 2020

*The Case for Medicare for All Has Grown Stronger Than Ever* based on current economic and expense figures.

Even more power to president
2 July 2020

The Supreme Court ruled that the president can fire the head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau arbitrarily.

This gives the president even more power over it, but the conman already replaced the head of the CFPB, which shows it already had insufficient independence.

Limit targeting of advertising
2 July 2020

A California ballot initiative aims to limit targeting of advertising based on "sensitive" personal information.

I think it will do some good — but there are ways to game the new requirement about personal data. Users could tell companies not to use the sensitive data, if they find which companies to give this instruction to. But companies can use observed behavior as approximate proxies for the personal data. Facebook and others can tell with high probability whether someone is gay, or what per religion is, by what perse visits and searches for. However, those proxy data are not, in fact, part of the sensitive personal data.

In addition, this requirement is vulnerable to the manufacture of consent(*): "to use our service, which everyone believes one cannot live without, you must consent to our using your sensitive personal data for advertising."

What we really need is anonymity in searching and paying on the internet.

Senator Sherrod Brown has proposed a strong internet privacy law that would make some real difference. His proposed law would limit the collection of data. He has grasped the issue of the manufacturing of consent.

Whether it would fully address the problem depends on details that I have not seen. It would prohibit selling personal data; would it prohibit selling the service of selecting people based on their personal data, which is what Facebook actually does? The California ballot initiative does that.

He talks of allowing collection of data that is "necessary" for the service that is offered, but that rule has strong interpretations and weak interpretations.

Nonetheless, Senator Brown has advanced the discussion considerably. He rejects the supposed imperative to keep nasty businesses going.

* It amuses me no end to repurpose this term, which Chomsky coined for one nasty practice, to describe another nasty practice.

Banning apps for snooping
2 July 2020

India has banned 50 apps made by Chinese companies based on concern that they are being used for snooping on Indian users.

One must ask if the Indian government thinks it is acceptable for US companies, or Indian companies, to snoop on Indian users.

If these apps were free software and were running on a free operating system, then India would not be able to ban them, and people would be able to assure that they don't snoop, or fix them not to snoop.

Republican senators plan to prohibit services from offering end-to-end encryption
2 July 2020

Republican senators plan to prohibit services from offering end-to-end encryption, by a set of practices to be decided later by various agencies that want to snoop on everyone.

This will restrict the nonfree communications applications that are supplied by specific services. If you are wise, you will not trust them; you will use free programs, independent of whatever communications servers you use, to do the encryption. However, lots of other people will use those nonfree applications, and that will allow the US government to snoop on almost everyone in the US.

Across the US, corporations are suing local governments
2 July 2020

All across the US, corporations are suing local governments — for instance, for trying to protect people from Covid-19.

These corporations are responsible for the specific wrongs they do, but the system that facilitates it is broken and we need to fix it.

Facebook announced plans to block some hate messages
2 July 2020

Ceding to pressure from advertisers, Facebook announced plans to block some hate messages and misinformation about voting. This will hamper the bully and his supporters from using the platform to stir up hatred and interfere with voting.

Facebook mistreats users in fundamental ways; let us not think that this change makes Facebook ok.

Demands of NYPD to cut budget
2 July 2020

*Hundreds of Occupy City Hall protesters demand NYPD cut budget by $1bn.*

If more Americans wore masks
2 July 2020

*If more Americans wore masks the pandemic would slow, experts say.*

Urgent: Dismiss Larry Summers as an advisor
2 July 2020

US citizens: call on Biden to dismiss Larry Summers as an advisor.

Torture from all sides
1 July 2020

All sides in Yemen's civil war are torturing prisoners.

Exorbitant water bills
1 July 2020

Americans are losing their homes due to exorbitant water bills that they cannot pay.

Cooperation with the rest of the world
1 July 2020

With Covid-19 building up in most countries, will the wealthier parts of the world cooperate with treatment in the rest of the world?

Toxic positivity
1 July 2020

*The Toxic Rise of Toxic Positivity.*

As much of my life has been unhappy — for reasons that were pretty obvious to me — I have been visited many times with demands that I be helped by the help they offer, and become cheerful. Or at least pretend to be.

Crushing organized protests
1 July 2020

China's draconian law has crushed the organized protests of Hong Kong.

We must not forget Hong Kong's years of resistance, just as we must not forget China's massacre of students supporting democracy in Tian An Men Square.

Romanticizing Confederacy
1 July 2020

Stone Mountain Park romanticizes the Confederacy, but when the giant statue was built, in the 1960s, it embodied the spirit of segregationism. This article proposes ways to make it ineffective.

Sentencing journalist to death
1 July 2020

Iran has sentenced journalist Ruhollah Zam to death.

Amendment to reduce military budget
1 July 2020

Sanders explains the need for his amendment to reduce the US military budget by 10%.

Banning group activities
1 July 2020

Some US states are banning certain group activities to try to slow the accelerating spread of Covid-19.

Onions suggestions for thug departments
1 July 2020

(satire) The Onion's suggestions for reforming US thug departments.

Great idea for a sitcom
1 July 2020

(satire) *economist John Stephens confirmed to sources Monday that he has a great idea for a sitcom where a Keynesian and a Friedmanite have to live together.*

1 July 2020

Chess: patriarchal or feminist?

Not getting jobs back
1 July 2020

Some economists forecast that 10% of US workers will not get their jobs back even if we eliminate Covid-19. That will amount to a big recession.

$500 per dose
1 July 2020

Gilead Sciences plans to charge $500 per dose for remdesivir.

The company would make a profit selling it for $50 per dose, and if we had a national medical system, it would push the price down to such a level.

The role of government funds in developing remdesivir is not an exception, it is the normal case. Medicine is one of the areas where it is important not to allow patents.

The US government has bought nearly the entire production of remdesivir for July through September, making the drug unavailable to other countries that are subservient to the patent system.

I hope that they will go through with the plan to make compulsory licenses, which are permitted by the WTO treaty. The US has lobbied for decades to convince countries to forego that right. Maybe they are prepared to defy the conman to help their hospitals cope.

The article claims that the US government has tried to keep supplies for treating Covid-19 available in the US, but that's not its usual policy. There are examples where it did the exact opposite, in particular with masks and ventilators. Even now, Fauci says that US medical personnel face shortages.

And the numskull has no wish to ensure there is sufficient testing capacity in the US.

Thus, the purchase of remdesivir is contrary to the usual practice, and makes me wonder what his motive was.

Bold plan to do part of the deal
1 July 2020

House Democrats have proposed a "bold" plan to do a substantial part of the Green New Deal — but nowhere near all of it.

2050 is far too late a target. The target we need, to avoid disaster, is 2020, or perhaps 2010. But since that's impossible, at least make it 2030.

The plan seems to be formulated in terms of "net" emissions, meaning that it will rely on planned "offsets" that are intended to cancel out emissions. However, these plans can fail. You can plant trees, but over thirty years of global heating, the changes in climate can kill them, and whatever carbon they absorbed will be released again.

New York thug department and FBI interrogating arrested protesters
1 July 2020

The New York thug department invited the FBI to join in interrogating arrested protesters (and non-protesters) about their political views.

Thugs used pepper spray on protesting violinists
1 July 2020

Thugs in Arizona used pepper spray to disperse protesting violinists.

This might have been justifiable if they were playing Schönberg's atonal music. Didn't the Atonal Brigade in Guatemala torture dissidents during the civil war? ;-}

Advance for Women's equal opportunity?
1 July 2020

Is being the first American woman to bomb Yemen, or operate a CIA torture operation, an advance for Women's equal opportunity?

Reducing gender bias is an important cause, but it is not the only issue of right and wrong in life.

Green Party won many local elections in France
1 July 2020

The Green Party won many local elections in France. This convinced Macron to adopt most of the recommendations of the Citizens' Commission for the Climate, though Greenpeace says he weakened them in the process.

CIA and KGB manipulation of elections
1 July 2020

A book reports on how the CIA and the KGB have manipulated elections in various countries.

It might be true that the CIA no longer tries to manipulate elections as such, but the US helped overthrow governments in Honduras and probably Brazil and Bolivia. And it is trying to do so in Venezuela.

US medics have a shortage of protective gear again
1 July 2020

US medics have a shortage of protective gear again, thanks to Republican efforts to boost Covid-19 infection rates and pack the hospitals.

Why not apply social distancing to social media?
1 July 2020

*No more going viral: why not apply social distancing to social media?*

Mayors call for cash payment to every American
1 July 2020

Mayors of 11 US cities call for an automatic monthly cash payment to every American.

Here is their web site.

I'm in favor of this, but it is not sufficient by itself. For instance, it will not be enough to give everyone medical care; we need Medicare for All.

Libya's oil wells
1 July 2020

Instead of working to keep Libya's oil wells shut, there is a scheme to reopen them by letting the two warring governments cooperate and split the income.

This might lead to peace, which would be a great thing for Libya, but the increased oil extraction could speed the world towards global disaster.

Louisiana's indirect scheme to ban abortion
1 July 2020

The US Supreme Court rejected Louisiana's latest indirect scheme to effectively ban abortion.

China limits limits on having children
1 July 2020

China is singling out Uighurs and other minority groups in Xinjiang for special limits on having children, and imposing them with forced sterilization.

Tory-style economy of recent years
1 July 2020

When it comes to the economy, only 6% of Britons want to return to the Tory-style economy of recent years.

Too bad they will have Tory government for 4 more years. They should have voted for Corbyn and Labour.

Australian government powerless against lobbyists
1 July 2020

*Australian government powerless against lobbyists with hidden interests, audit finds.*

Shortage of state funds
1 July 2020

A shortage of state funds for what cities need has pushed UK cities into corruptible deals to get funds from developers in exchange for permission for bad projects.

Urgent: Vote NO on the 2021 military spending authorization act
1 July 2020

US citizens: phone your senators to ask them to vote NO on the 2021 military spending authorization act.

The Capitol Switchboard numbers are 202-224-3121, 888-818-6641 and 888-355-3588.

If you call, please spread the word!

Fire due to rising temperatures
30 June 2020

3500 square miles of the Siberian forest is now on fire due to rising temperatures there.

Lead with over 65
30 June 2020

Biden leads the cheater with voters over 65 in battleground states.

The cheater surely knows that. Could that be part of why he is trying to spread coronavirus as much as possible?

Digital lessons
30 June 2020

The Oak National Academy, a UK government operation, plans to make 10,000 digital lessons for use in teaching over the internet.

If these are free/libre, they will revolutionize online education. If they are free/libre and copylefted, they will liberate online education. Otherwise, they will be more bait for exploitation.

If you are British, how about writing to the Oak National Academy to urge them to make these lessons free/libre? Please spread the idea on social media and with letters to the editor, too.

Refraining criticizing
30 June 2020

The UN refrains from criticizing Salafi Arabia for attacking Yemen so as to encourage Salafi Arabia to give humanitarian aid to compensate for part of the damage that it does.

Job of police
30 June 2020

*Getting Real About the Job of Police: A Letter to Barack Obama.*

When thugs kill, main, or bully people, they are doing their job — their real job. And that is the underlying problem.

Protesters shot
30 June 2020

Someone shot two protesters at a rally for justice for Breonna Taylor.

I suppose the killer is one of the violent right-wing extremists that the extremist-in-chief has stirred up.

Thugs during curfew
30 June 2020

New York City thugs went berserk during the curfew, mauling people who were minding their own business in their back yards.

Naturally, they made up absurd accusations against their victims — that's standard thug procedure.

We are what we eat
30 June 2020

*We are what we eat, so we’re right not to trust what goes into American food.*

Never mind Covid-19
30 June 2020

30% of Americans have decided, never mind if we catch Covid-19 and never mind if we transmit it to other people. The result is a swelling outbreak.

Republican politicians are pushing this, and surely they can't be unaware of where things are going. Therefore, they want that, and it is surely for the sake of their power. But what is their strategy?

Support for democracy
30 June 2020

In Brazil, a campaign to show support for democracy and teach young people what dictatorship was really like.

Shift to zero emissions and jobs
30 June 2020

*Australia could create hundreds of thousands of jobs by accelerating shift to zero emissions.*

Summit Learning
30 June 2020

Some US schools have installed Summit Learning, Facebook-sponsored proprietary software which sends students' data to a servers so as to give them "customized" lessons.

Students say it is tiresome and they don't learn much.

The company's PR chief says, “I want to make clear to you that we are in no way misusing student data.” Whatever it does with the data is, apparently, just fine in the organization's view.

My view is that none of that data should ever leave the school itself.

Armies fighting for oil
30 June 2020

The two main armies in Libya are about to start fighting for control of Libya's oil fields. One has support from Egypt and the other from Turkey.

Someone should propose a deal by which both sides get paid to leave the oil in the ground. Then maybe they could make peace.

Daesh defeated
30 June 2020

Afghanistan defeated Daesh as a field force, leaving only scattered underground terrorists. (Hooray!) About 600 of them surrendered, of whom around 1/3 are radicalized women.

Here's an idea, for some, those who are not full of hatred: send them to live in villages with people who suffered Daesh's atrocities, but who do not see them as targets for revenge, so they can learn to understand what it was about Daesh that was so bad.

This might be good for some American supporters of imperialist wars, too.

30 June 2020

The word "whitening" is becoming taboo. A company said it will stop describing its skin creams with that word. It will still sell them, though.

Is it wrong to aim for better treatment by trying to lighten your skin color? Is it wrong to sell whitening creams that purport to do that? I don't see how.

Is the idea that people should organize to reject the idea of lightening their skin, to insist that skin color should not matter? I can see the sense in that idea, if people do it. But I do not think making it taboo to say "whitening" will help matters.

Falsifying figures again
30 June 2020

Covid-19 is spreading faster in Florida, and filling the hospitals, and Rebekah Jones (who was fired for refusing to falsify figures) accuses Governor DeSantis of falsifying them again now.

Since he is a firm supporter of the saboteur in chief, I wouldn't put that past him. But it raises the question of why he seeks to spread Covid-19 in Florida.

Published warnings about global heating
30 June 2020

Published warnings about global heating go back at least to 1912.

Greta Thunberg hits out at leaders
30 June 2020

*Greta Thunberg hits out at leaders who use her fame to 'look good'.*

It's easier to ask for a photo with her than to champion climate defense.

Political correctness
30 June 2020

Political correctness threatens to put the word "master" under taboo regardless of the meaning.

Opposing slavery and racism does not require that we blot out every word that had a use in relation to slavery or racism.

How Rojava reorganized the police
30 June 2020

How Rojava reorganized the police, so that most patrolling is done by volunteers from the community.

What it says about the rest of Rojava's system is fascinating too.

Thugs that killed Elija McClain will perhaps be prosecuted
30 June 2020

The three thugs that killed Elijah McClain for looking suspicious (including wearing a mask because he was shy) will perhaps now be prosecuted.

When thugs are allowed to start violence because of vague fears, that will systematically lead to killings based on no reason except their imagination.

Charter seeks to impose data caps
30 June 2020

*Charter seeks FCC OK to impose data caps and charge fees to video services.*

While reminding us that we should never give big companies anything on credit because they do often cheat on the deal, the main reason this merger should not have been allowed is that we need more competition, not less.

Fools having street parties
30 June 2020

Thousands of fools having street parties have started raising London's Covid-19 infection rate.

UK railways
30 June 2020

Covid-19 has effectively nationalized the UK railways, but it remains to merge the systems and realize the benefits of nationalization. Meanwhile, it won't be feasible to keep them running if masses don't return to using them.

Large corporations donating funds to anti-racism campaigns
30 June 2020

Large corporations are donating funds to anti-racism campaigns, but mostly not changing the harsh working conditions that they impose.

One exception to this picture is that Target announced a $15-per-hour minimum wage for the whole US.

First steps toward artificial wombs
30 June 2020

Scientists are taking the first steps that might some day lead to artificial wombs. (Not that the road will be quick or easy, even for nonhumans.)

If it becomes possible to move a 9-week fetus to an artificial womb and bring it to term, what moral implications should that have?

Except for the benefit of protecting the health of gestating women (and, ideally, fetuses also), not much. A fetus is not a baby, regardless of where it happens to be located at the time.

To protect Women's rights from theocratic oppression, we will need to reject, clearly, the idea that once a fetus is outside the mother, it has been "born" and is therefore a human being.

Pun: "pulling up dandelions"
30 June 2020

Pulling up dandelions

Chemical pollutants combine with Covid-19
29 June 2020

Chemical pollutants combine with Covid-19 to cause deaths.

"Fusion centers" and other government "intelligence" agencies
29 June 2020

"Fusion centers" and other government "intelligence" agencies sent thugs in Minneapolis and later elsewhere warnings of violent protests, which were not based on facts, and may have encouraged the thugs to be violent.

Mass. students defrauded by Corinthian Colleges
29 June 2020

*'Huge Win': Court Orders DeVos to Cancel Loans for Mass. Students Defrauded by Corinthian Colleges.*

I suppose the cheater will appeal this decision.

Bill that would make Washington, DC a state
29 June 2020

The House of Representatives passed a bill that would make Washington, DC, a state.

I think that residents of Washington, DC, should have representation in Congress. There are various ways to give them that. Making Washington, DC, a state would mean two more Democratic senators, probably progressive senators. That would be a change for the better, but it ensures that Republicans will block DC statehood.

Another way is to have Washington, DC, vote as part of Maryland. That is natural since it was originally carved out of Maryland to create the capital district. This would not change the balance in the Senate, but it would enable the residents of Washington to vote for Congress.

Animal rights activist Regan Russell was killed
29 June 2020

Animal rights activist Regan Russell was killed, in a protest, when truck carrying pigs hit her. The protest was against an ag-gag law criminalizing various kinds of protest and journalist activities.

I do not support the animal rights movement, but I support journalism and freedom to protest, and condemn ag-gag laws.

Regrow forest where it has been cut down
29 June 2020

Brazilians are studying how to regrow forest where it has been cut down.

Antelope Valley of California
29 June 2020

The Antelope Valley of California is a center of white supremacism, and the thugs there have a history of murdering blacks.

The Movement for Black Lives
29 June 2020

The Movement for Black Lives aims for more than getting thugs to stop killing blacks. It includes advancing equality along many fronts, described here.

I support all of them.

Urgent: Keep up a high rate of coronavirus testing
29 June 2020

US citizens: call on Congress to keep up a high rate of coronavirus testing.

The Capitol Switchboard numbers are 202-224-3121, 888-818-6641 and 888-355-3588.

If you call, please spread the word!

Urgent: Safe storage of guns
29 June 2020

US citizens: call on Congress to promote safe storage of guns.

The Capitol Switchboard numbers are 202-224-3121, 888-818-6641 and 888-355-3588.

If you call, please spread the word

Urgent: Prohibit face recognition
29 June 2020

US citizens: call on Congress to prohibit face recognition.

Here is the message I sent.

If "law enforcement" agencies can use face recognition to track and find people, that creates opportunities for oppressive surveillance. We need to prohibit that &mdash but not only that. If other government agencies such as the NSA are allowed to do it, the FBI will get the data. If the UK is allowed to do it in the US, the UK will give the US that data. If businesses such as Clearview AI are allowed to systematically track Americans, that data will be so widely available that police departments will surely get it. (Police departments are not known for obeying laws.) But even if only businesses use the data collected by Clearview AI, that can still amount to oppressive surveillance. I therefore urge you to prohibit the installation of systems that systematically collect Americans' images, or any biometrics that enable recognition of individuals in general as they move around the US. The same should apply to vehicles — for instance, systematic recognition of car license plates, or other tracking of cars, should be legally limited to when the system sees an offense, or when there is a warrant to track a particular car. Digital toll payment should be done by anonymous payment systems so that they do not create a database of people's movements. I can tell you about these systems.

The Capitol Switchboard numbers are 202-224-3121, 888-818-6641 and 888-355-3588.

If you contact them, please spread the word!

Urgent: Choose a progressive new leader for the Foreign Affairs committee
29 June 2020

US citizens: call on the House of Representatives to choose a progressive new leader for the Foreign Affairs Committee — replacing Eliot Engel.

The Capitol Switchboard numbers are 202-224-3121, 888-818-6641 and 888-355-3588.

If you call, please spread the word!

Urgent: stop advertising in Facebook
29 June 2020

US citizens: call on advertisers to stop advertising in Facebook, as pressure for it to remove hatred.

Principal terrorist threat
29 June 2020

The principal terrorist threat in the US today is from right-wing extremists.

The study does not count terrorism by the president, such as sabotaging the response to Covid-19, but that dwarfs casualties of the September 2001 terrorist attacks and I think it should be counted as a terrorist attack.

I agree that we should not further attack human rights in the name of "anti-terrorism". The PAT RIOT act authorizes too much surveillance and it needs to be weakened. Most of the right-wing terrorism is not susceptible to being prevented. But we could cut back on the spread of right-wing extremist recruiting with suitable changes in Facebook's algorithms for what postings to propagate.

Minor wrongdoing
29 June 2020

Thug departments are fond of harping on minor wrongdoing, claiming that this will discourage all crime. (There is no evidence it works.) But when they commit nonfatal wrongdoing, such as minor false accusations, they want us to disregard them.

I think that cops, because of their special powers and privileges, should be held to an especially strict standard.

War with Covid-19
29 June 2020

Countries where the US is perpetuating an endless civil war now face war together with Covid-19.

Giving up in despair
29 June 2020

Reportedly, many Hong Kong protesters are giving up in despair on seeing the arbitrary power that China is imposing on Hong Kong.

China can accused anyone of a "national security crime", which means anything China wants it to mean, and the trial will be conducted by puppet judges chosen by China.

Hong Kongers struggled so valiantly, hoping that China would be dissuaded from blatantly crushing Hong Kong's autonomy, or else that China would pay a price for doing so. They did not attain the first. Let's help them attain the second.

Escalating economic warfare
29 June 2020

It looks like Biden is planning to escalate the US economic warfare with Venezuela.

Replacing Maduro's dictatorship with the crushing international plutocratic empire (which will get worse with time) is not a solution to Venezuela's problem.

US economic sanctions on Venezuela are killing people just as sanctions on Iraq did.

They are deadly in Yemen, too.

Investigate Drug Enforcement Agency
29 June 2020

Congress should investigate the Drug Enforcement Agency, then eliminate it.

Let's decriminalize possession and use of any and all drugs. Clinics should distribute dangerous, addictive drugs to registered addicts, to kill off most of the black market. This works in other countries.

Judge orders to free migrant children
29 June 2020

*Judge orders US to free migrant children from [immigration prison], citing virus spread.*

I suspect the article uses the term "children" to mean "children and teenagers."

Making household water more expensive
29 June 2020

Plutocratist politics in the US is making household water more expensive. Many Americans can't afford their water bills. By 2030, with current trends, that will happen to a considerable fraction of the population.

History of targeting black activists
29 June 2020

*The FBI has a history of targeting black activists. That's still true today.*

Bill HR4
29 June 2020

*The bill HR4 would put the teeth back into the Voting Rights Act. For the sake of racial progress, the Senate must pass it.*

Sick leave
29 June 2020

If sick leave pay is much less than normal pay, workers are compelled to go to work when when sick. They can die from that.

Those that do decide to stay home may face pressure to work even while sick.

CO2 emissions post lockdown
29 June 2020

The UK's CO2 emissions went down because of lockdown, but they will go back up if it doesn't adopt more green policies.

Another choice
29 June 2020

An anonymous gay man, after a man tried to push sex on him and eventually relented, looks for another choice besides prosecute, denounce, and do nothing. One that would not "preclude the possibility of rehabilitation and restorative justice."

Clemency to prisoners
28 June 2020

*California governor grants clemency to 21 prisoners as thousands infected with Covid-19.*

Controversial Data-Mining Firm Palantir
28 June 2020

*Controversial Data-Mining Firm Palantir Vanishes From Biden Adviser's Biography After She Joins Campaign.*

Minimum Wage
28 June 2020

*Now Is Still a Good Time to Raise the Minimum Wage.*

Boston has ordered city officials not to ask for face recognition data
28 June 2020

Boston has ordered city officials not to ask for face recognition data from any source. However, you can't expect thugs to honestly obey the rules.

What if the data is given to officials without their asking? What if it is not explicitly identified as based on face recognition?

Companies such as Clearview AI can oppress people even if they give their data only to businesses. We need to prohibit systematic tracking of people by any means whatsoever. Only a government agency with a specific warrant should be allowed to do that.

Alaa Abdel's sister, Sanaa Seif jailed in Egypt
28 June 2020

Egypt made Alaa Abdel Fattah a political prisoner last year. Now they have jailed his sister, Sanaa Seif.

(satire) Defunding the police could lead to a spike in crime
28 June 2020

(satire) *… law enforcement officials warned Wednesday that defunding the police could lead to a spike in crime from ex-officers with no outlet for their violence.*

Leadership that neglects science
28 June 2020

*Leadership That Neglects Science Led to Worst COVID Crises in US and Brazil.*

Environmental activists being prosecuted for an imaginary felony
28 June 2020

Environmental activists delivered a box of toxic plastic pellets, fished out of the Gulf of Mexico, to a lobbyist for a company that wants to build a new factory to make more such pellets. For this symbolic act, they are being prosecuted for an imaginary felony.

A victory against euphemism
28 June 2020

In a victory against euphemism, a New Zealand supermarket company has decided to remove a level of euphemism from descriptions of its products for menstruation.

TraceTogether Token
28 June 2020

Bunnie Huang reports on the stand-alone contact tracing device, the TraceTogether Token, in a pre-release version.

I respect Bunnie highly; if he says something respects privacy, I suppose it does.

One issue the report does not discuss: the device is meant to be used for months — does it delete information about past contacts after a few weeks pass? Older contacts should not be relevant to Covid-19, so there is no justification for reporting them.

Bunnie explains why using mobile phones for contact tracing gratuitously puts privacy in danger. In brief, it's because carrying a mobile phone gratuitously puts privacy in danger, and running an app gratuitously puts privacy in additional danger.