Category Archives: Freedom

Political Proposals

Here are a few political proposals…

Allow National Referendums

The national initiative is a proposal to amend the United States Constitution to allow for ballot initiatives at the federal level. In other words, for the people to directly vote on Federal laws like is currently possible at the state level (in some states). In doing so, the American people could bypass the bureaucracy and bickering of Washington.

Eliminate Lobbying & Corruption

1. Eliminates political funding & campaign contributions.
2. Federally mandates equal funding to candidates, and BANS all other forms of campaign or political funding.
3. Federally mandates equal representation in news media and commercial media outlets OR establish a free and readily available Federal outlet (such as a TV channel) for such purpose and ban other instances.
5. Offers more scrutiny and regular mandatory investigations into Political candidates and their assets as a form of oversight and in doing so create a Federal organization to perform the investigations thereof for such purposes. Personal privacy rights of those running for office being waved for such.

Put H.R.676, “Expanded & Improved Medicare For All Act” to vote by national referendum.

This law establishes national universal health insurance similar to Canada’s single-payer system and Britain’s socialized medical system.

This will save $100B annually due to 15c per $ currently going to shuffling paperwork, double that of Canada single-payer system, which would drop to 5c per $ under Medicare with lower administrative overhead and eliminating the Pharmaceuticals 17% profit margins compared to 3% for all other businesses.

What do you think? It’d be nice, yeah?

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Google Censors the Internet

Jan 29 2013 Update#3: As of yesterday or so, when Google rolled out their new interface they also included the SafeSearch changes for all other English domains that I know of, such as the UK’s, Canada’s, Australia’s, New Zealand’s, South Africa’s, etc. Google Image has essentially been killed. Looks like I’m switching over to Bing.

Are you in the US? Have you tried searching Google Images for anything since December 12th, like oh say… boobs?

null

Go ahead, go google image boobs. I’ll wait. Of course, if you were lucky you may have SafeSearch disabled and you only get the UK equivalent of “Moderate SafeSearch” which has been permanently forced upon us. There is no longer an “off” switch to their censorship.

If you search for boobs with it “on” you will get no results at all. If you search with it “off” then you will get boobs, minus explicit results.

At this point you’re probably like “Okay, I’ve had enough of this bullshit!” Or at least, if you’re anything like me then you are. Oh it’s not limited to boobs, by the way. It’s the same for everything.

‘We are not censoring any adult content, and want to show users exactly what they are looking for — but we aim not to show sexually-explicit results unless a user is specifically searching for them,’ Google said in a statement.

‘We use algorithms to select the most relevant results for a given query. If you’re looking for adult content, you can find it without having to change the default setting — you just may need to be more explicit in your query if your search terms are potentially ambiguous. The image search settings now work the same way as in Web search,’ it continued.

“Specifically searching for them,” eh? Okay, Google. Let’s google “blowjob” and see what we find… So uh, hey… if I specifically search for blowjob, that… does mean I’m looking for pictures of blowjobs…. right? Right?! …No? 😦

If you don’t like it, sadly the only choice is to either switch to a different search engine (Hey this is a good time to throw this out there: If you have any Google stock… abort, abort! Abandon ship!), or use a different country’s version of Google. If you’re using Internet Explorer or Firefox you can add Google’s Search Engine for other countries to your browser’s search options. I’m using Google CA-en SSL myself – Canada’s version Google, which hasn’t been censored… yet.

If they do roll this out to other countries, I’ve gotta say… I’m leaving Google entirely and going to Bing, Yahoo, or somewhere else. I won’t stand for this shit. When I search for something I expect to find it, not for my results to be censored. This is America… and you know what? China, where porn is illegal, has a less censored Google now. Laugh at that for awhile, before you start crying when you realize how terrible it is.

So tell me, what happened to “Don’t censor the web,” assholes?

Jan 13, 2013 Update#1: I don’t use Chrome, but if anyone out there uses Google Chrome and is looking to find out how to bypass it as well, here’s how you do it…

For Chrome just click the = thing up at the top right then go to Settings then under Search go to Manage Search Engines.

Then down at the bottom use this info:

Google CA (SSL)

google.ca

https://www.google.ca/search?q=%s{google:acceptedSuggestion}{google:originalQueryForSuggestion}{google:assistedQueryStats}{google:searchFieldtrialParameter}sourceid=chrome&ie={inputEncoding}

Then just hit enter. Then hover over it and hit “Default” and it’ll be your default.

Jan 13, 2013 Update#2 I was informed that the recent changes are also adversely effective reverse google image searching. I’ve already fixed mine, so here’s how you do that…

If you have Firefox, grab this Add-on: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/image-search-options/

By default I don’t think it has Google Image search, so here’s the info for that…

Sub-Menu ->
http://www.google.com/favicon.ico

Left Click Settings
http://www.google.ca/searchbyimage

Variables (one per line)
image_url=::$URL::

GET Var Markers:
?
&

(unchecked) Use POST instead of GET

Right Click Settings
http://www.google.ca/searchbyimage/upload

Variables (one per line)
encoded_image=::$IMGDATA::

GET Var Markers:
?
&

(checked) Use POST instead of GET

Doing it like this will give you a right click contextual menu where you can use google image search via Canada’s version of google which is uncensored. I personally also use IQDB, which is useful for anime style art.

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Senate sneaks in SOPA under a new name


U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. (REUTERS / Yuri Gripas)

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) launches a second round of attacks in an attempt to censor the Internet.

After trying to adopt Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect IP Act (PIPA), both pieces of legislation turned out to be a disaster, causing outrage among Internet giants and ordinary users alike. Congress had to retreat. However it’s determined to get what it wants this time.

After the shelving of SOPA and PIPA back in January Reid stated,“There is no reason that the legitimate issues raised by many about this bill cannot be resolved.”

As RT reported last month, Senator Reid added that lawmakers will“continue engaging with all stakeholders to forge a balance between protecting Americans’ intellectual property, and maintaining openness and innovation on the Internet.”

The vote on the anti-piracy legislation was postponed from its January 24date after Wikipedia and other popular websites went dark to protest the draft law.

Now the battle for online freedom continues.

The rebuttal to push Internet-regulating legislation has transformed into a new cybersecurity bill. The particulars of the latest attempt by senators to censor the Internet have not been disclosed to the public.

However some leaks suggest that the bill will grant the authority to crack down on the Internet to the executive branch of power, namely the White House. It looks highly possible taking into consideration that the legislation has to come out of the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee, chaired by Connecticut Independent Sen. Joe Lieberman.

The same Lieberman who earlier co-sponsored the so called Kill Switch bill that could allow the president of the United States to “declare a cybersecurity emergency,” and practically shut down the Internet.

After outrage from Internet advocacy groups, Kill Switch never made it in the Senate. This time it may be back under a new name.

Source: RT

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And so it starts…

Oakland Police Chief calls Anonymous’ recent actions “cyberterrorism” (Source) – that, by the way, has to be one of the most hilarious articles I’ve ever read.

“Although the posting Tuesday morning to the file-sharing website Pastebin.com quickly made headlines,”

“the file-sharing website Pastebin.com”

Pastebin.com

Why do I say this, you ask? The NDAA, of course.

We can indefinitely detain, without trial, any suspected terrorist. Even American citizens.

Anonymous = terrorists?
Government’s problem goes away.

And so it starts…

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Internet 1. RIAA/MPAA 0.

Okay okay, so there was the whole MegaUpload thing… a-aand… Napster… ahem… But this is an assured victory for the Internet!

Tribler Makes BitTorrent Impossible to Shut Down

While the file-sharing ecosystem is currently filled with uncertainty and doubt, researchers at Delft University of Technology continue to work on their decentralized BitTorrent network. Their Tribler client doesn’t require torrent sites to find or download content, as it is based on pure peer-to-peer communication. “The only way to take it down is to take the Internet down,” the lead researcher says.

The Tribler BitTorrent client is no newcomer to the BitTorrent scene. It has been in development for more than 5 years and has delivered many innovative features, which have mostly been ignored by the masses.

Today, however, Tribler is more relevant than ever before.

Developed by a team of researchers at Delft University of Technology, the main goal is to come up with a robust implementation of BitTorrent that doesn’t rely on central servers. Instead, Tribler is designed to keep BitTorrent alive, even when all torrent search engines, indexes and trackers are pulled offline.

“Our key scientific quest is facilitating unbounded information sharing,” Tribler leader Dr. Pouwelse tells TorrentFreak.

“We simply don’t like unreliable servers. With Tribler we have achieved zero-seconds downtime over the past six years, all because we don’t rely on shaky foundations such as DNS, web servers or search portals.”

So how does it work?

Like many other BitTorrent clients, Tribler has a search box at the top of the application. However, the search results that appear when users type in a keyword don’t come from a central index. Instead, they come directly from other peers.

Tribler’s decentralized search results

Downloading a torrent is also totally decentralized. When a user clicks on one of the search results, the meta-data is pulled in from another peer and the download starts immediately. Tribler is based on the standard BitTorrent protocol and uses regular BitTorrent trackers to communicate with other peers. But, it can also continue downloading when a central tracker goes down.

The same is true for spam control. Where most torrent sites have a team of moderators to delete viruses, malware and fake files, Tribler uses crowd-sourcing to keep the network clean. Content is verified by user generated “channels”, which can be “liked” by others. When more people like a channel, the associated torrents get a boost in the search results.

The latest addition to Tribler is a Wikipedia-style editing system dubbed “Open2Edit,” where users have the option to edit names and descriptions of torrents in public channels. All without a central server, totally decentralized.

open2Edit

According to Dr. Pouwelse, Tribler is fully capable of resisting any pressure from outside, and it will still work when all torrent sites and trackers are gone. It simply can’t be shutdown, blocked or censored, whatever laws politicians may come up with.

“The only way to take it down is to take The Internet down.” Pouwelse told us.

One thing that could theoretically cause issues, is the capability for starting users to find new peers. To be on the safe side the Tribler team is still looking for people who want to act as so called bootstraptribler peers. These users will act as superpeers, who distribute lists of active downloaders.

“Together with software bugs and a code cleanup, that is now our last known weakness,” says Pouwelse.

While the Tribler client only has a few thousand users at the moment, for avid file-sharers it must be a relief to know that it’s out there. No matter what crazy laws may pass in the future, people will always be able to share.

Those who want to give it a spin are welcome download Tribler here. It’s completely Open Source and with a version for Windows, Mac and Linux.

Source

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Obama

I’m a few days late with this, I know. It’s too bad really, but I have been talking about it. Trust me I have.

So, if you haven’t heard yet – it seems Obama passed ACTA (remember that particularly nasty little trade agreement I mentioned a few posts earlier? Yeah, that one.) by executive order. He completely bypassed the Congress.

What. the. fuck.

Seriously, man?

This isn’t the first time this RIAA lapdog joke of a politican has done shit like this either. I’m getting pretty sick and tired of his blatant abuse of power, especially its use to usurp our freedoms and oppress our people.

This guy needs impeached. Seriously.

Here, go ahead and check the story out if you haven’t. Here’s a link. Go ahead, there’s not much in there that I haven’t already told you. Blah blah, yadda yadda. That’s what he did. All you need to know, really.

That’s not all you missed though. There has been a major shitstorm going across the world about ACTA. You know, it’s not even elected officials that are passing this shit in most countries. It’s Ambassadors and shit that are accepting these “trade agreements” which alter our very laws. We are having no say in the matter. That guy in charge of the whole thing even, he resigned! Here, check it out…

This is interesting. Kader Arif, the “rapporteur” for ACTA, has quit that role in disgust over the process behind getting the EU to sign onto ACTA. A rapporteur is a person “appointed by a deliberative body to investigate an issue.” However, it appears his investigation of ACTA didn’t make him very pleased:

I want to denounce in the strongest possible manner the entire process that led to the signature of this agreement: no inclusion of civil society organisations, a lack of transparency from the start of the negotiations, repeated postponing of the signature of the text without an explanation being ever given, exclusion of the EU Parliament’s demands that were expressed on several occasions in our assembly.

As rapporteur of this text, I have faced never-before-seen manoeuvres from the right wing of this Parliament to impose a rushed calendar before public opinion could be alerted, thus depriving the Parliament of its right to expression and of the tools at its disposal to convey citizens’ legitimate demands.”

Everyone knows the ACTA agreement is problematic, whether it is its impact on civil liberties, the way it makes Internet access providers liable, its consequences on generic drugs manufacturing, or how little protection it gives to our geographical indications.

This agreement might have major consequences on citizens’ lives, and still, everything is being done to prevent the European Parliament from having its say in this matter. That is why today, as I release this report for which I was in charge, I want to send a strong signal and alert the public opinion about this unacceptable situation. I will not take part in this masquerade.

Pretty rare to find such direct honesty in political circles. That’s quite a direct and clear condemnation of the entire process. In terms of process, it will be interesting to see if this has an impact. While the EU did sign on to ACTA today, it still needs to be ratified by the European Parliament (more on that in a little while). Having Arif quit makes a pretty big statement, and hopefully makes it easier for Parliament Members to speak out loudly against ACTA… Still, this is an uphill battle. The supporters of ACTA have been working to get ACTA approved for years. To them, this is basically a done deal.

And here’s the source on that from TechDirt. Not that you’d think I was lyin’ to ya or anything.

Right, so… ain’t that some bullshit?

Anyways, there’s some online petitions to parliaments in EU now to try and stop ACTA, to try and get them to listen to their people. But according to the Poles, that may not even be all that useful.

In fact, the Polish Parliament donned Guy Fawkes masks (the same as Anonymous) to protest ACTA. Check it out:
Polish Parliament Guy Fawkes masks

Isn’t that some funny shit? I think it’s cool. But anyways, what they said wasn’t so funny:

“US interferes in internal affairs of Polish parliament. We feel great friendship for US, but there are limits.”

They were basically protesting that they don’t even have a say in their own Parliament. They’re being manipulated, and underhanded tactics are being used to bypass Parliaments and pass the bills without even being voted on by elected officials, never letting the people’s voices be heard. I haven’t found a good English source on that, but here’s the original using Google Translate. You’ll have to bear with the machine translation. I know it sucks.

So anyways, all kinds of bullshit going on with ACTA. These RIAA/MPAA/etc. assholes seem to have gotten serious. Well, fuck them. They need to learn that a government that doesn’t have the support of their people won’t be governments for long. We can’t let shit like this stand.

Oh and just as a footnote… We really need to impeach that Obama asshole. President.. hah! We should have just put an RIAA executive in there. It’d have the same effect.

Time and time again, man… What a prick. I’m gonna be pissed if he gets reelected. I mean, shit, I voted for the guy. But even I take offense to this shit. All his bypassing Congress and bypassing crap with Executive Orders. The power mongering fuckwad… Hell, he was already banned from the 2012 Presidential Ballot in Georgia. heh, I dunno about all that… Here’s the source for that shit. Something about the legal definition as per the Constitution of “natural-born citizen” being a child born by two US Citizens, and whereas Obama’s mother was a US Citizen, but his father was Kenyan, and not a US Citizen, which makes him a US Citizen, but not a “natural-born citizen.” It’s some real finger pointing technical bullshit, but if it’s true then it means he never should have been eligible to have been elected into the office in the first place, and it completely bypasses the Constitution, and I think it’s mostly about upholding that, and not so much about going after him. But let’s all not kid ourselves… It’s all about going after him. I mean, black President… Georgia… Everyone knows the Civil War never ended there. Anyways, whatever. Sorry, no offense to Georgians. Just callin’ it like I see it.

Anyways, Tiff out. I’ll make another post here in a minute about my Political and World Views. You’ll get a kick out of that.

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H.R. 1981

Since I’m on the tangent, I figure I should go ahead and mention another law that we could get if we don’t fight against it. And that is…

The Protecting Children from Internet Pornographers Act of 2011. The name is very misleading. It actually has very little to do with child pornography, and much more to do with monitoring everything we do.

This Anti-porn bill won’t protect children, but it could cripple the Internet. It is arguably the biggest threat to civil liberties now under consideration in the United States. The potential victims: everyone who uses the Internet.

A better name for this bill would be “The Removal of Privacy and Encouragement of Blackmail by Law Enforcement Act of 2011.” The problem, as they say, is that it’s too hard to catch child pornographers, and okay, that’s probably true. But their solution is retarded. Under language approved 19 to 10 by a House comitte, your ISP would be required to track and inspect every single data packet you send or receive (read: ALL of your Internet activity) and save it for 18 months, along with your name, the address where you live, your bank account numbers, your credit card numbers, and your IP addresses you’ve been assigned.

And all they would have to do to get that information? Just ask. That’s it. Under the bill, the government would not need any warrant to look at all your data. It could just ask the ISP to hand it over. It doesn’t even have to say please. Some overzealous county sheriff could simply get all the data from everyone living in his territory and sift through it like the most creepy voyeur you could possibly imagine, all under the premise that some crime must be happening somewhere.

And well, the safety of your data? Just look at Sony Playstation hacks. That didn’t go so well. Every single thing we do could be easily compromised. But that’s obviously not the issue, though I’d say it damn sure is one of them. The biggest issue is obviously our complete loss of privacy.

This bill isn’t about pedophiles and child pornography. This bill is about spying on every American that uses the internet and collecting private personal information. Say hi to Big Brother.

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ACTA

SOPA? PIPA? Now ACTA? Jesus, what are these people thinking…

The full name is “Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement” but that’s very misleading. Watch the video to see what it really is. It’s way worse than SOPA/PIPA ever could have been.

Here’s another video:

ACTA is one more offensive against the sharing of culture on the Internet. ACTA (Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement) is an agreement secretly negotiated by a small “club” of like-minded countries (39 countries, including the 27 of the European Union, the United States, Japan, etc). Negotiated instead of being democratically debated, ACTA bypasses parliaments and international organizations to dictate a repressive logic dictated by the entertainment industries.

ACTA would impose new criminal sanctions forcing Internet actors to monitor and censor online communications. It is thus a major threat to freedom of expression online and creates legal uncertainty for Internet companies. In the name of trademarks and patents, it would also hamper access to generic medicines in poor countries.

The European Parliament now has an ultimate opportunity to reject ACTA.

We’ve got to stop them… there’s no way we can let this pass. Good god!

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