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Tech needs

I was amazed by a story in the guardian (at https://www.theguardian.com/society/2020/feb/27/phones-that-may-hold-child-abuse-images-returned-to-suspects). Now, we all have that at times, a moment where we just do not get the idea that something is happening (or not), the issue here is that it is a much larger setting and we see this with “Police are giving back to suspected paedophiles phones and computers that possibly hold child abuse images because they do not have the time or technology to search the devices“, so the police ran out of time (or options) hand the evidence that could be used against these people and let them go?

Then there is “the technology that helps officers quickly scan devices to determine the likelihood of indecent images being present is not consistently available across forces” in this that it is important that we take notice of ‘quickly‘, how determining is that factor? As I see it with the range of mobiles that are coming in the next two years, the hardship of the police will increase by factor 16 at the very least (on average factor 32 applies). There is a larger setting where the police have a duty, but so do the tech firms. I am not the person to blame all the tech firms, yet there is a larger setting where certain tools need to become available with the next stage of transportable drives and hardware. And we need to look beyond the normal FAT (or NTSC) stage of scans where allocated space is scanned alone, making the hardship for the police increase to factor 64 at the least. 

Then we see “limited capacity of forces to conduct many costly and time-consuming digital forensic examinations is also hampering investigations into suspects who have downloaded indecent images of children” and that is when we see the impact of people saving images on their own drives, it is the group that has dark web links in a sort of 4chan (not blaming 4chan here) that allows these people to look at such images at their own ‘leisure’ in any free wifi situation as the images are encrypted until at the endstation with the decrypting part in the app itself, and as the hardship of the police is merely to scan for images, the solution to find these people is unlikely to become a larger solution ever.

So when we see “restore 20,000 police to the streets of England and Wales will not be enough to match the increasing demand placed on officers to protect children” we need to consider very different solutions and the adaptation of law to protect children becomes a much larger need. It is seen in “In one case inspectors found that 100 days had passed since police were notified that a 10-year-old girl had been receiving indecent images from three older men via social media. During that time there was no effort to identify and trace the perpetrators“, which is interesting because they were apparently able to identify that these were ‘three older men‘. Is it just me or is there a larger failing in the making? The second failure is seen in “Safeguarding planning for children linked to a suspected perpetrator is routinely deferred until a criminal investigation has begun“. As such there are actually three failings. We overlooked ‘social media‘, they too play a role. There should be a clear path for a younger person to press the alarm button alerting social media on any indecent picture sent via social media if the account holder is under 18, this could have been avoided years ago. This is not a stage of freedom of expression, this is not free speech, it is optionally criminal speech and evidence must be gathered at this point. 

There is no defence in ‘someone had my password!‘, the owner of the social media account had responsibilities too. As such as we see “The delay is worsened by the lack of technology available to officers to search devices for child abuse images“, the statement is cutting on both sides, as the images might not have been on the device. other means of tracking usage must be found and we need to do more to keep the children safe.

In all this there is a much larger failing, yes there are criminal prosecution needs, yet it is almost indecent to push the blame onto the police. I believe that whatever enlargements places like GCHQ is getting, they need to get off the horse of blaming players like Huawei on events that come from alleged unproven sources like the US state department and place these sources on finding true solutions to aid the police. Consider the need for solutions and less so towards unfounded allegations, that is close to 15% of GCHQ resources freed overnight. I call that a decent solution, do you not?

Yet, I am not blaming GCHQ, the issue is that we need to adjust the laws on digital prosecution and where we are presently allowed to go, that is not a given in the stage we see. We need to adjust the track we can walk and who can walk it for us, it is the only solution that remains at present and too many people think in call centre cubicle terms and refuse to see the larger pasture that we need to canvas.

In all this tech firms and governments need to find common ground and we are in the space where we can blatantly blame tech firms, yet it is not that simple. The tech firms offered a solution and someone found another use for it. We cannot blame Sony for people using their PS3 as a powerful Ubuntu Linux station and that is basically what is happening. This is not some tech firm problem, it is the station where a generic piece of hardware can run another app and use it as it sees fit, use and adjust for other solutions and implement that and the police has little to no hope at all solving the issue they face and tech firms need to come out and play with governments and stay nice. 

Yet the issue is much larger than anyone thinks. We saw part of this last year in the Crime report with ‘Tech Firms’ Neglect Lets Pedophiles Run Rampant Online‘, the fact that ‘freedom of expression’ is used in a way none are willing to agree to also means acknowledging that sometimes an aerosol is used, not to hand out what it was intend on doing, but to assassinate a politician. See here the object (at https://www.amazon.com.au/Aluminum-Pneumatic-Refillable-Pressure-Compressed/dp/B00JKED4MS/ref=sr_1_3?keywords=aerosol&qid=1582859473&sr=8-3), as I add it with the right Arsenic mix and switch the bottle, the user kills himself. Is the bottle maker to blame (or I am even more devious and add the mix to their own bottle, was the victim in the end to blame for their suicide)?

So the entire ‘rampant’ part is (as I personally see it) intentional miscommunication, there is a larger stage and both sides need an actual point of reference. there is a system in place and we see “YouTube removed this video, and many others, after WIRED alerted it to the problem” (source: Wired) yet we forget that this is a massive engine and google is not in a place to stop the engine being used by criminals to make a few quick bucks. We need to accept and understand that. Even as several people hide behind “on a test account created to investigate the network of paedophiles on YouTube, the platform’s algorithm continues to suggest similar videos of children that have been commented on by sexual predators“, the engine did exactly what it was supposed to do, yet in this case we see that it is servicing the criminals and the short sighted people shout and blame the tech company, just as they blame the police and neither is at fault, the criminals are. We can look at the T91 assault rifle and claim it is used to kill, which is true, yet we forget that the person using it can kill criminals and police officers alike, blaming the makers for that is just short sighted and stupid.

We need a much better solution and we need to rely on tech makers to hand the tools to us, all whilst we know that those making the request (see hidden images) have no clue what to look for and how to look for them, it is maddening on several levels and the people on the side lines have no clue that the referee is looking for an orange jersey all whilst the All Blacks are playing Australia, so he sees Green, Yellow, Black and White (the fern). It is a stage where we look at the players, whilst the field has several other members that are validly there and we overlook them, just like the ‘hidden pictures’ are sought in a game where the pictures are optionally not even on the mobile device, merely the link to them is.

That part is overlooked and as we go from one item to the other, we forget that links can be added in several ways and the police will run out of time long before it runs out of options to check. In all this the law failed the children long before the tech firms did. So whilst we see Wired giving us “To date, Disney, Nestlé, Epic Games, Dr. Oetker and a number of other companies have halted advertising on YouTube after it emerged that the platform was monetising videos being uploaded and viewed by paedophiles“, I merely see one sanctimonious firm and 3 short sighted ones, it could be two for two, but I leave you to decide on that. An automated systems was designed and put into place, the criminals were hiding in the woodworks and there are close to a dozen ways to hide all this from an AI for years, all whilst we clearly see that We need to realise that YouTube became so much more than it ever was intended to be and when we take notice of ‘300 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute!‘ and consider that 18,000 hours of video is uploaded every hour, we get a first input of just how difficult the entire setting is, because these 18,000 hours of video will include 3,000 hours of videos that is set to items no more than 5 minutes per video, making the issue 20 times larger, in all this we forget that this is a global thing and cross border criminal activities are even harder to set any mind to then anything else and in all this, there is no actual number on the actual number of uploads. Consider that ten minutes out of 18,000 hours is illegal and that 30 seconds out of those 10 minutes is on paedophiles. At that point do you get a first inkling of how large the problem is. and that is merely YouTube, there are channels that have no monitoring at all, there are channels that have encrypted images and video solutions and there are solutions out there that have an adapted DB2 virus header and the police has no clue on how to go about it (not their fault either), in all this places like the DGSE and GCHQ are much better solution providers and it is time the tech firms talked to them, yet whenever that discussion starts we get some stupid politician who conveniantly adds a few items to the agenda, because to that person it made sense and as such no solution is designed and it has been the situation of non action and non solutions for a few years now and I see the same discussion come up and go about it all whilst I already know the outcome (it is as simple as using an abacus).

We have larger tech needs and we have better law needs, And whilst we see people like Andy Burrows, NSPCC associate head of child safety online go on about “extremely disturbing“, all whilst a person like that should realise that the system designed is generic and severely less than 0.03% of the population abuses it is beyond me, I would go on that a person like Andy Burrows should not be in the position he is when he has little to no regard of the designed system, more precisely, he should remove the ‘online‘ part from his title altogether.

And whilst Wired ends with “During our investigation into his claims, we found comments from users declaring their “love” for the children and exchanging phone numbers with one another to share more videos via WhatsApp“, I merely wonder how the police is investigating these phone numbers and whatsApp references, in all this the absence of WhatsApp (Facebook) is also a little weird, it seems that these social media predators are all over the place and the open abuse of one system is singled out whilst we get no real feel of just how the abuse statistics are against the total statistics. Consider that Windows has a 2.3% error to abuse by non users, in all this for Google to get a system that is close to 99.4% decent is an amount that is almost unheard of. most people seem to forget that Google gets pushed into a corner by media and madiamediators on transgressions on IP protected events (publishing a movie online), there is the abuse of video, there are personal videos that are disallowed and terrorism via YouTube, in all this harsh or not, the paedophile issue is a blip on the radar, Youtube gets $4 billion out of a system that costs $6 bilion to maintain and it pays off in other ways, yet the reality on the total is ignored by a lot of players and some of them are intentionally averting their eyes from the total image and no one asks why that is happening.

So whilst we look at the Wired byline ‘Legislation to force major tech platforms to better tackle child sexual abuse on their networks is also “forthcoming”, a Home Office spokesperson has confirmed‘ we need to seriously ask whether these legislation people have any idea of what they are doing. The moment these people vacate to another nation the entire setting changes and they have to start from scratch again, all whilst there is no solution and none will be coming any day soon. You might think that vacating nations solves anything, but it does not, because the facilitators of these images can pick up their server and move from place to place whilst they get millions, all whilst the payers are still out of reach from criminal prosecution. and whilst we go in the magic roundabout, we get from point to point never having a clue on the stage we are on, we are merely going in circles and that is the problem we face. Until the short sighted blaming stops and governments truly sit down with tech firms trying to find a solution, we are left in the middle without any solution, merely with the continued realisation that we failed our children.

We have dire tech needs and we need to make a cold list of what we need, and the first we need to do is blaming them for a situation that they are not to blame. Consider that we are blaming Johannes Gutenberg for the creation of the printing press, he created it in 1439, basically to make the bible available to all (before that only rich people could afford a bible), yet he is the one being accused of aiding the spread of Mein Kampf by Adolf Hitler. that is what we face, we blame YouTube and Google for something they never did and optionally never considered facing. In 1814 Joseph Nicéphore Niépce made the first photograph (like we know camera’s today), yet in that same year Julien Vallou de Villeneuve used it to photograph naked women, should Joseph Nicéphore Niépce be held accountable? We all seem to say yes and blame Google, but it had little to no control at all, a system like the one Google made was not meant for the 0.00000000925% abusing the system, yet that is what is happening right now and we need to take a step back and consider what we are doing. I am not claiming that Google is a saint, yet we refuse to hold Microsoft to account for their 97.5% operating system, yet we are going to all lengths to prosecute Google for 0.00000000925% of materials produced (actually it is up to 1/24th of that if not smaller) by others through abusing the YouTube system, all whilst the problem is a lot larger and is beyond almost any tech firm, so why are we doing that?

It becomes clear when we add last year’s CNN article in the process. They gave us “Frustrated that those regulators are moving too slowly, Congress, with support from Democrats and Republicans, will use its investigative power for a top-to-bottom review of the tech industry, and focus on the biggest companies. Congress cannot break up companies under existing laws, but it could cook up new ones — and Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, who’s established herself as Democrats’ big ideas leader in 2020, already has a plan to break up the largest tech monopolies.” (at https://edition.cnn.com/2019/06/04/politics/washington-turn-against-tech-companies/index.html), I believe that this is not about the materials, it is about a handle of the company and flaming conversations brings emotional response and the quickest way to push voters into an area where they are the most useful. Google is still too big for politicians, so they push and push until something gives and they are hoping that the people will be malleable to a much larger extent then the tech companies ever were.

Lets face it, how many companies are actually interested in fixing a problem that covers 0.00000000925% of their materials? That is the actual question! The police can’t go after it, these politicians are unwilling to adjust laws where paedophiles are actually processed, as such the entire situation does not make sense and tech firms are suiting up for their defense, that is all the politicians have enabled, now the politicians through media hope for enough outrage and we see the fallout, those politicians are willing to endanger the lives of the children by not seeking an actual solution, but a solution that fit their needs and these two do not align. and in this both sides of the isle on a global scale are guilty, both the elected and unelected (this term) parties are all equally guilty of setting a stage that suits them, not one that solves the problem.

We seemingly forget about that part of the equation, I wonder why that is.

 

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It started with a meme

Yes, I ignored the impeachment news for the longest of time, until the act is there, there is no impeachment. Just for the numbers people, this would be the 5th presidential path to impeachment, John Tyler (10) got his overturned 127-83, Richard Nixon (37) resigned before proceedings began and we got Andrew Johnson (17) and Bill Clinton (42) who both did impeached, by the way, I will forever have issues with a girl who keeps a sperm covered dress out of the laundry unless it was intentional the fact that she intentionally kept it for 9 months, and that is all I have to say on that subject. Now we get to the 45th President Donald Trump. When we look beyond the ‘grabbed her by the pussy‘ issues, we see a stage of bad decisions again and again, oh and I am a Republican at heart, so I am not giving you democratic rhetoric.

The first one is his inability to use social media correctly, even if we ignore the grammar issues on covfefe (aka coffee), we see the foundation of a person who apparently states his own frame of mind in all the wrong ways. In addition to this we see his choices on what to tweet, GQ magazine gave us in addition ‘The CIA Reportedly Pulled Its Top Spy From Russia Because Trump Can’t Keep His Mouth Shut‘ (at https://www.gq.com/story/cia-pulled-russia-spy-because-trump), this is actually the very first moment when impeachment became a reality, when an elected official cannot keep proper national security in line, the entire presidency becomes an issue and doubly so when the transgressor of national security is the President himself. Even if he did not do it, the stage of ‘is it more likely than not‘ has been met and for national security that is enough.

Musical chairs with clowns and politicians

The meme did not strike a chord because of John Oliver, even if he is a well-deserved comedian with a critical side towards politics. It was Jon Steward with the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund bill (at https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2019/07/29/trump-sign-9-11-victim-compensation-fund-bill-first-responders/1835550001/), where he addressed a nearly empty congress. The idea that congress would not be there to give support to a bill where firefighters knowingly met certain doom is just beyond acceptable, from my point of view; those who were not there should be named and shamed for years to come. It must be mentioned that President Trump signed it into law and that might be the best thing he has done in his presidency.

The impeachment process continues as I get only an hour ago: “House investigators heard from Fiona Hill, the White House’s former top Russia adviser“, the Washington Post also gave us: “Trump renewed his call to unmask the whistleblower whose complaint sparked the impeachment inquiry“, the fact is not that he wants to know the whistle blower, it will be about the materials that the whistle blowers (plural) are bringing. The additional fact that we get: “Gordon Sondland, the U.S. ambassador to the European Union, who is scheduled to appear Thursday under subpoena” that the mess is a lot larger, the mess that hits the media is not a mess that we could avoid, the issue is that this mess should not have existed in the first place. The call from the democrat from Massachusetts is not to be taken lightly: “Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.) shared a link to an article about Cheney’s comments. He argued that within the past week, Trump has “endangered our troops,” “allowed ISIS to regroup,” “abandoned our allies” and “empowered” the leaders of Russia and Syria. McGovern used another name for the Islamic State“, basically his own fat tweeting fingers got him into this mess. The foundation of what a fashion magazine brings (GQ) is the cornerstone for a much larger issue, the fact that the president of the United States of America is the national security issue is something America has (as far as I can tell) never faced before.

It all comes to blows with “Republicans have seized on a ruling that Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) cannot participate in Monday’s deposition of Hill as they continue to argue the process should be open to the public“, for those in the dark, watch the movie called the Post, this is a direct stage where Republicans wanted things out of the media, there the issue was: “With help from editor Ben Bradlee, Graham races to catch up with The New York Times to expose a massive cover-up of government secrets that spans three decades and four U.S. presidents“, the Pentagon papers showed levels of folly never before imagined, and there was a need to go public, however, the Pentagon papers was about a stage 4 years after the war, in the end proving that the Johnson Administration “systematically lied, not only to the public but also to Congress” source NY Times. this time it is different, these are events now playing out, even as the Russian news got out AFTER the agent was safe, the fact that the president is part of a national security danger is just too unacceptable and before this goes to the public, the sources must be heard and vetted behind closed doors, I fully agree and I see the wisdom in that, even if the current president and the current administration does not.

I believe this administration made massive errors in the US China trade wars, and even more errors in the entire Huawei ban, the most visible one is that no evidence was ever presented that Huawei is a national security risk, because of the unproven accusations they are wrong, this is different in the UK where the head of MI6 (Alex Younger) gave the clear premise that no government should be dependent on essential infrastructure from foreign suppliers, which does make sense, but then they order their hardware from Finland and Sweden, so there is still some level of issue in place. the entire matter comes to blows in different ways as the larger group of EU nations (Germany being the latest) has kept the doors open for Huawei, now we get to the stage that America feared, Huawei will enable these nations to make faster headway in Europe, expected losses for the US will go between $5 Billion and $8 Billion in the next three years alone. My own expected IP would be available for implementation by Q2 2021 (if Huawei accepts), implying that there will be a boost to the 400 million small business owners outside of the United States, leaving an optional $4 billion out of reach of the US in that time frame alone, the moment my projection is proven values should double, in addition to that the entire telecom service model will change to a larger degree, giving the small business owners a lot more options to choose from, that part is also part of the impeachment.

When the economic models under this administration fail, the democrats will add that entire cart (whether valid or not) to the blame game. Whether we consider this or not, the current president will to some degree be blamed for not being a Guardian of the Economy. The Huawei and China trade pacts are merely one part in this. This administration has pushed the American deficit to the highest in history, even if we accept that the bulk of that failure are the American corporations who became complacent and flaccid, it is more likely than not that the democratic party will voice this in another way. In addition, the guilty of life for Americans have only gotten worse. At present it seems that the current president failed in at least 6 of his 7 roles, as far as I can tell the other impeachment had less on those presidents, we can argue that an adulterer is supposed to lie about those actions, so let’s not go there.

The roles

Chief Diplomat. Failed, the China trade war, I believe that the acts against Iran were justified.

Chief Legislator. Undecided

Party Leader. Failed, his racist tweets are a clear example and they are not the only one.

Chief Executive. Failed, openly hostile to challenges, his manner towards the National Security Advisors as well as his issue with academic opposition makes him a failed chief executive, He used 4 National Security Advisors in ONE term, which is a record as well.

Chief of State. Failed, the G-20 summit, as well as his dealings with the media gives him a fail mark.

Commander in Chief. Failed, the actions in Syria call his military insight and decision making into doubt to the largest degree.

Chief of Guardian of the Economy. Failed, Chinese trade war could have been prevented, outside factors (like iterative corporations merely added to the failure) and of course there were a few fiscal blunders as well.

The entire national security issue, as well as the connections that are being investigated should have sparked impeachment well over a year ago, perhaps the entire CIA matter ended up being the straw that broke the impeachment camel’s back. #Justsaying 

Yet this entire matter is far from over, the Guardian reported: “Donald Trump’s secretary of defense said on Sunday the Pentagon would cooperate with the House’s impeachment inquiry, while cautioning that Trump may try to restrict his disclosure of information“, whilst CNN gives us “Democrats also face extra scrutiny over their strategy as they race to prove that Trump abused his power by seeking election dirt on former Vice President Joe Biden from the President of Ukraine“, the question becomes why focus on strategy? Are the actions valid or not? Can a case be made or not? That is the mother lode of impeachment. Yet the fact that even Republicans are now more and more in support of the Ukraine investigations are making the map of red a hazardous place, it means that not only is there every chance of the next elected president being a Democrat, they have a real chance of winning both congress and the senate in 2020, this would push republicans out of play for 4 years, 4 years on the sidelines with their only option to play interference to some degree.

This was a race with growing chances; the entire impeachment matter merely hastened the shift from red to blue. At present there are numbers giving rise to the chance that the republicans will lose 7 senate seats, with an additional 4 unknowns that could optionally make the next election the biggest loss for Republicans in the Senate since 1936. In that year Democrat Joseph Robinson ended with 74 seats, I am willing to wager my last $1 that there is an option that the Democrats are at present optionally in a position to get 75 seats; it would be a new record. Republican Nebraska has one small advantage as Ben Sasse was openly critical of President Trump, in 1936 they were independent, this time around there is a chance for Chris Janicek to become Senator for the Democrats if he gets the right support, and of course if he plays his cards right.

Impeachment did no start with a meme, but my look at the shift of comedians and politicians did, when national wisdom and honour comes from a man like Jon Steward (never my favourite comedian) we stop and pause to reassess our values and we look at what we hold to be endearing and holy to us, holy values are not religious values, our family tends to be holy, our achievements are enshrined, but the steps we take to enable the next generation (usually our kids) are our step towards holy grace, we all want to leave something behind that lasts and when the clowns are running the asylum (congress) and Donald McDonalds has a large white Kentucky Fried Chicken mansion on Pennsylvania avenue (a little upstream from the FBI building, we see the folly of choices and we tend to demand change, in the case of America it took almost 4 years to figure out the folly beyond the minimum required degree.

When we seriously consider replacing Donald Trump with Jon Steward as President of the United States, at that point we realise that our values need to be restored, and we will elect whoever will give value to the values that truly matter, social media be damned.

I believe that there is a larger need; not merely the separating from church and state, the separation from corporations and state is now becoming a larger imperative, especially with a national debt that at present exceeds $22.8 trillion dollars with absolutely no plan in sight to repay any of it.

 

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Vive la what?

France decided, Emmanuel Macron is now the President of France. I will not shout some ‘hack’ issue. I believe that France made a choice, how well the choice is, is something that the President-elect of France will have to prove to be. Not the lame statistics on how young he is. The Guardian gives us some of the optional bad news (at https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/may/07/theresa-may-congratulates-macron-on-victory-as-eu-breathes-sigh-of-relief) where we see: “Happy that the French have chosen a European future. Together for a stronger and fairer Europe.” No, they did not and your rhetoric only is a first piece of evidence that the EU and the ECB are considering a former investment banker to be the reason to play your games, forcing people deeper in debt and slowly turning the EU into something despicable. For the most, the article is fine. Today will be all about congratulating President Macron, whilst those shaking hands, calling the Palace or sending letters are desperately trying to get a few political punches in. That is part of the game, yet the dangers due to the greedy need of the USA is about to become actually dangerous. Marine Le Pen could have sunk those dangers, although it would come with other issues, there is no denying that. Yet the economic health is going to be a first, in that Crédit Agricole, BNP Paribas and Natixis would guard against that happening to France (after they take care of themselves and their needs), yet will it be enough? The quote that President Macron is giving now is: “I do consider that my mandate, the day after, will be at the same time to reform in depth the European Union and our European project,” Macron had told reporters, adding that if he were to allow the EU to continue to function as it was would be a “betrayal”. It sounds nice, but over time and especially as we watch delay after delay will we see if he is actually made of stern stuff. Time will tell and there is no way that it would be regarded as fair to see any initial headway until at least 10 days post forming his government. Yet there is a side we must take heed from. It is seen in the quote “he spoke out against a “tailormade approach where the British have the best of two worlds” creating “an incentive for others to leave and kill the European idea, which is based on shared responsibilities”“, this sounds nice, but responsibility also implies accountability, a side that has been absent from the EU and the ECB with ongoing lack of transparency for the longest time, in that Brexit remains a valid step.

So why do I seem to be freaking out?

That is partially true. Not because of Marine Le Pen not making it, which might have solved a few things. It is the part I mentioned yesterday with the Financial Choice Act. As a cheat sheet (at http://media.mofo.com/files/uploads/Images/SummaryDoddFrankAct.pdf)

shows us: “The Dodd-Frank Act creates the Financial Stability Oversight Council (“Council”) to oversee financial institutions“, that part is now effectively gutted from the Dodd-Frank Act. The damage goes a lot further, yet as I see it, the people in the White House have just enabled the situation that what happened in 2004 and 2008 can now happen again. When that happens the Euro will take a massive hit too. With Brexit part of that damage can be averted and in layman non diplomatic terms, we can state that as JP Morgan is getting the hell out of Brexit, the damage they could potentially cause in the near future will be on the books for the places that they go to or remain in.

One of the dangers is seen in the key principles of the Financial Choice Act. With ‘2. Every American, regardless of their circumstances, must have the opportunity to achieve financial independence;‘ we can read it in a few ways, one of them being that this is the sales pitch where the Greater Fool can invest in something, using funds that person does not have whilst endangering whatever financial future they thought they might have had. It basically opens a door to get some of the suckers’ bled dry fast. In addition with ‘3. Consumers must be vigorously protected from fraud and deception as well as the loss of economic liberty;‘, I do not see protection, I see a setting where basic protection is in place, yet as we have seen with the issue in 2008, the amount of people who lost it all whilst prosecution failed to protect the people and convict the ‘transgressors’ nearly 100% is just too stunning, and it is a lot more dangerous now as the global population has nowhere near any level of reserve of protection compared to the last time around. In addition, when larger firms start playing this game, they will drag whomever they passively claimed to protect (like retirement plans, like mortgages they held) with them.

There is another side which takes a little longer to explain. Yesterday someone tweeted an image I remembered when I grew up. You see it is all linked to what I was part of in the 80’s. I saw the application of segregation, isolation and assassination in a less nice way. It drew me back to my childhood, when I was introduced to practices by the Nazi’s in WW2 during my primary school history lessons. To identify the Jewish people, they were told to wear the Yellow Star of David. When I saw the image my thoughts started to align, unlike the puzzlement of the population at large in 1941-1943 as the star was made mandatory in several nations, the people were uncertain to the matter, with the exception of the Dutch underground who would not trust any German for even a millimetre, they were able to hide 25% of the Jews, so in the end well over 100,000 Jews were deported. From those only a little over 5,000 survived. The Dutch underground was able to keep close to 30,000 hidden, with well over 2/3rd surviving the war. Most people, would not learn of the actual fate of the deported Jews until much later, many remained in disbelief for many years after the end of WW2 in 1945. You see, it is that phase that I feel we are in now, we seem to be in disbelief as laws are past to give a sector of industry more leeway, whilst they (according to some sources) made 157 billion in profit and that is in the US for 2016. So you want to open the tap for a system that is less regulated, non-trustworthy and have shown in 2008 to embrace all greed at the expense of anyone else? How is that a good idea?

 

 

So what evidence is there?

Well, there is Senator Warren (Democrat for Massachusetts) who called it an ‘insult to families’, in addition we see “so that lobbyists can do the bidding of Wall Street“, which is still a political statement. When we see the partial part (at http://financialservices.house.gov/uploadedfiles/financial_choice_act-_executive_summary.pdf), we see “Provide an “off-ramp” from the post-Dodd-Frank supervisory regime and Basel III capital and liquidity standards for banking organizations that choose to maintain high levels of capital. Any banking organization that makes a qualifying capital election but fails to maintain the specified non-risk weighted leverage ratio will lose its regulatory relief” It is the very first bullet point and leaves me with the situation that banks have no right to relief when they take a certain path, yet they still get to gamble. I especially like the part in section 4. “Make all financial regulatory agencies subject to the REINS Act, bi-partisan commissions, and place them on the appropriations process so that Congress can exercise proper oversight.” Yet, the REINS Act only passed the Senate, yet is not law at present, in this it is called on to do what? If the Financial Choice Act is set into law before the REINS Act, the US will have a gap the size of the flipping Grand Canyon, in addition, from the McIver Institute we see the opposition from the Democrats with “The REINS bill is similar to legislation moving through congress, but with lower thresholds“, yes, that has proven to be a good idea in the past! Still it is a view of Democrats versus Republicans and it is a Republican government (House, Senate & White House), so wherever are the clear academic dangers? We get that from Mike Rothman, president of the North American Securities Administrators Association and Minnesota commissioner of commerce with “It is clearly evident that the changes contemplated by the bill would significantly undermine and compromise the ability of regulators to effectively enforce financial laws and regulations“, whilst the I saw the term “this voluntary state-federal collaborative framework“, so the collaboration is voluntary, not mandatory. In the last decade, when have we seen a proper level of protection in a voluntary state of any matter?

The beginning of the dangers are shown by the Consumerist, which took a look at version 2.0 of what many regard to be a travesty. In this we see:

  • Require the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to get congressional approval before taking enforcement action against financial institutions
  • Restrict the Bureau’s ability to write rules regulating financial companies
  • Revoke the agency’s authority to restrict arbitration
  • Revoke the CFPB’s authority to conduct education campaigns
  • Prevent the Bureau from making public the complaints it collects from consumers in its Consumer Complaint Database

The one I had a stronger issue with is the one that tosses responsible spending around. The issue ‘Remove requirements under the Durbin Amendment that guided how much credit card networks could charge retailers for processing debit card transactions‘, so basically by charging stronger on debit cards, people will see a need to pay cash or force the credit card risk on people who for several reasons prefer not to do so. In addition the restrictions to arbitration will give leeway to Financial Institutions to avoid all kinds of courts as the victims (called consumers and investors in this case) any right to hold the financial institutions to account. It is rigging even stronger an unbalanced system. Marc Jarsulic, Vice President for Economic Policy at the Center for American Progress called this ‘a system that removes protections against taxpayer-funded bailouts, erodes consumer protections, and undercuts necessary tools to hold Wall Street accountable‘, which was already an issue at present making it a lot worse. It seems that the junior workers of 2008 are now in a place where they would prefer to fill their pockets before their luck runs out. The last bit is purely speculative from my side and it might take until 2020 until I am proven correct, yet at present 2 years is a long time to await the dangers of a greed driven system to get a little greedier. It is in that that segregation from the Euro will become essential soon enough, especially as there is no one muzzling the ECB and its crazy need to spend funds that they do not have and will not have for years to come. As for the news we see appear at present on Bloomberg shows my correctness from another side. At https://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2017-05-07/a-reverse-trump-tax-plan-delivers-an-economic-miracle-in-sweden, we see how a reverse of the Trump ideal works a miracle in Sweden. Now, it sounds a little too good to be true and it is. You see, I am not against the principle that Sweden has, yet in Scandinavian terms, the Swedes are uncanny social. I once joked that a woman can get married, after a year she gets the bun in the oven and gets paid maternity leave. If she starts making buns non-stop, she will never work another day (as long as she gets pregnant immediately after giving birth), 20 years and 22 kids later, she still has an income, a sound and secure retirement fund with only one year of work. It is almost true and I admit far far fetched. Yet the social side of Sweden allows for this. Because that one person will be the utter outlier in any statistical graph. The Swedish solution works in a social educated country like Sweden. In America which fosters self-centeredness and greed, this system would be abused at the drop of any hat and the system would collapse. You see, Bloomberg does not mention, that unlike America, companies in Sweden do not shun taxation (IKEA seemingly being the exemption to that rule), which is also a huge difference. In addition, Swedish Civil Law has a sizeable extensive system of Administrative Law which would also contribute. As we see commerce in Sweden increase, the Swedes will automatically feel the brunt of that in a positive way (as I personally see it). Yet it is not all good and summer there, as Magdalena Andersson faces a vote of no confidence if certain changes are not stopped, or even more adamant, be rolled back to some degree.

It is this combined view that France is now seen as ‘Vive La what?’ It is very much on how certain banks and the ECB are called back to stop endangering the future of too many people, Quantative Easing be damned. It is in that environment that the Financial Choice Act is an upcoming danger as Wall Street gets to be in charge of how money flows, in what direction, risky or not. As for what happens between now and 202, I truly hope that I am wrong on every count, because the 2008 global losses which have been estimated to set around $15 Trillion could easily be doubled this time around. More important, as global national reserves are none existent, the impact will hit the consumers and retirees in ways that they cannot even fathom, it makes the hardship in Greece look like a cakewalk as I see it. I will happily be wrong, yet the visibility we already see at present sets me more likely than not correct, which is really scary, not just for me.

Oh and if you doubt me in this (which will remain forever valid), why have we seen massive levels of misinformation from papers with ‘NO ONE wants to risk GREXIT’ Economist says Greece bailout will go ahead to SAVE Eurozone’ (source: The Express), whilst we know that you cannot be set out of the Euro or Eurozone involuntary, and ‘saving Eurozone’ is a little strong is it not? Or the Daily Mail that gives us that Brexit is a gift to the Greeks. This is not merely a point of view, certain sources are adamant to misdirect the focus of the people, if the Euro was such a gift from the gods, misdirection would not have been needed, would it?

 

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When you lose a friend

I feel sad today, today I feel like I lost a friend. Leonard Nimoy has left this world at the age of 83. My ‘friendship’ began when I was just 9 years old. It was a Sunday, it was after watching soccer, we got to see Star Trek, the episode was “Where No Man Has Gone Before” and I was hooked! Like many others we were all about Mr Spock, Kirk was cool too. I was not one of those obsessive people where life was all about Star Trek and Star Trek alone. I loved Science Fiction, Fantasy to a lesser degree. Over the years I would see the voyager of the Enterprise and then again, but I would also see other things. So when after I long silence Star Trek, the Movie came out, I was happy as a little schoolkid. Leonard Nimoy was back! Mr Nimoy wold be back in a way that was a lot better than ever, you see it was not just as Mr Spock. There was Galvatron (voice only), then in 1987 he amazed us in other ways. He directed Three man and a baby, a remake from the 1985 movie ‘Trois hommes et un couffin’. The result was a masterpiece, putting Tom Selleck, Steve Guttenberg and Ted Danson together gave it the zest that would make the movie a great success (it turned 11 million into 179 million). It was clear that there was a whole lot more to Leonard Nimoy, than just the Vulcan Spock.

In 1991 he did something that would cut into me even deeper than I imagined. He made ‘Never forget’. It is a drama that gives voice on the Holocaust, one that would stay with me for some time. The story is about Mr Mermelstein (played by Leonard Nimoy), a survivor from Auschwitz who stands up to the challenge when he is confronted by a hate group. We see another side. For me it was a strong piece, until that time I had never given any thought to those who ‘adhere’ to Holocaust denial. The movie shows the strong acting abilities of Leonard Nimoy, more so than Star Trek ever did.  He studied at the University of California, got his Masters of Arts from Antioch College (OH), and he ended up seeing many sides of the arts. Books, Photography, Screenplays, Poetry, Music, Directing and Acting. He would even appear in a music video from the Bangles and narrate in the video game (Kingdom Hearts). A man, born in Boston Massachusetts would become a well-known person to well over a billion people. I feel that I lost a friend today. He did not know me, we never met, and in this regard I am not alone. Millions of fans will feel the same way today. Some will only remember Spock, some will remember the photographer, the director, and some will remember him as a mentor.

An interview to see is one on Piers Morgan last year (at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b0K9qqFaSY0), it shows a health issue that will hit a lot more people that many would have thought. It would get him in the end. He never stopped being a teacher of life!

He had a huge impact on me and for now, I feel a little lost today, I know I am not alone with this feeling.

 

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