Author Archive | DeepCough

TSA: What Is it Good For?

The-Simpsons-vs-the-TSA(TSA) isn’t as effective at detecting suspicious characters as one might think. The Government Accounting Office (GAO) has reviewed the TSA’s Screening Passengers by Observation Techniques (SPOT) program was evaluated at being “the same or slightly better than chance.”

The SPOT program since 2007 cost $900 million. The TSA has failed to collect consistent data to prove the effectiveness of the behavioral detection program; worse yet, the SPOT program was initiated without any scientific validation. For reason, the GAO has recommended that Congress cut off funding to this program, something that the Department of Homeland Security disagrees with.

You think that’s bad? That’s only the tip of the damning iceberg.

Anti-TSA activist Johnathan Corbett, who filed a lawsuit against the agency on the faulty nature of their body scanners found a particularly revealing document that declares the probability of terrorists hijacking planes in the United States.

VIA TechDirt

Jonathan Corbett, a long-time vocal critic of TSA body scanners, has been engaged in a lawsuit against the government concerning the constitutionality of those scanners.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

The Rise of Big Chocolate

“The Rise of Big Chocolate” certainly sounds like a lascivious porno movie, but if there is any movie that comes to mind in this article, it’s Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, a wonderful and memorable family movie with catchy songs coating a rather bitter and dark enterprise involving vulture legal contracts, unsafe working conditions (why, oh why, is there never a barrier around the chocolate river?), worker exploitation, and even corporate espionage (remember Slugsworth), a movie that unfortunately mirrors the present due to monopolization of confectionery companies by Cargill and Barry Callebaut.

VIA Foreign Policy

Small and mid-size confectioners have traditionally been able to request specific blends and recipe mixtures from cocoa processors. But as the number of sellers has thinned, chocolatiers struggle to procure these specialties. “When it comes to Belgian chocolate, there is not that much variety anymore,” says Van Riet. He explains that his customers “are very nervous” as the consolidation in the industry continues.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

Occupy Wall Street Eliminates $15 million of Debt

Since the protest started in Zucotti Park in New York City near the financial district, the Occupy Wall Street movement has done a lot to raise awareness of the iniquities and corruption in the American political and economic system, whilst receiving biased mass-media editorializing and suffering undue violence from the local police. Since November 15, 2012, the Occupy movement started a program of debt-relief called “Rolling Jubilee,” which seeks to bailout individuals who have accrued debt through credit cards as well as medical bills. To date they have relieved millions of dollars in debt for just pennies on the dollar.

VIA Guardian

A group of Occupy Wall Street activists has bought almost $15m of Americans’ personal debt over the last year as part of the Rolling Jubilee project to help people pay off their outstanding credit.

Rolling Jubilee, set up by Occupy’s Strike Debt group following the street protests that swept the world in 2011, launched on 15 November 2012.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

Rebuilding the Silk Road

Flickr/CC.

Recently, Kofi Annan, former  secretary general of the United Nations, has said that the “repressive approaches to containing drugs have failed.”

And this could not be more true as Brian Anderson writes on Motherboard about how the Silk Road will never be shut down, since the Dread Pirate Roberts has made it possible to upload the site anew in just “15 minutes.”

It only took a month for the Silk Road 2.0 to go live after the now infamous Silk Road marketplace shuttered. One month. Should the budding deep-web bazaar experience the same fate as its predecessor, and be knocked out by authorities still whack-a-moling their way through the online front of the war on drugs, the Silk Road 3.0 would be up and running in 15 minutes, tops.

That’s according to the Dread Pirate Roberts, the pseudonymous head of SR 2.0. In what are arguably his most breathy public remarks to date the “new” DPR, who either cribbed his handle from the DPR of SR 1.0 fame or who is indeed the original DPR, opened up to Mike Power on his long-term vision for the site.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

The First Bitcoin ATM

Could this be the stepping stone to the exchange of completely electronic currency?

Bitcoin ATM

VIA NBC NEWS

VANCOUVER (Reuters) – A silver and blue ATM, perched up next to the espresso bar in a trendy Vancouver coffee shop, could launch a new era for
the digital currency bitcoin, offering an almost instant way to exchange the world’s leading virtual money for cash.

The value of a bitcoin soared from $13 in January to a high of $266 in April as more businesses and consumers used them to buy and sell online. Some investors are also treating bitcoins like gold, using them to hedge against currency fluctuations and speculating on their rise.

The kiosk, which looks like the average ATM but with hand and barcode scanners, opened for business on Tuesday and by mid-morning people were lined up to swap their bitcoins for cash, or to deposit cash to buy more bitcoins.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

The Tea Party Is Over

Reading the recent post about how Ted Cruz is some Biblically-prophecied “anointed king” caused me to have a severe horror flashback of the previous Republican administration, in which the commander-in-chief  of that time essentially declared the “divine right of kings” as the reason for his place in the Oval Office.

But then I come to read that our corporate overlords have decided to deprioritize the Tea Party as an electoral brand. It’s nice to know that fascists plutocrats won’t put just anybody in office.

VIA Yahoo! News:

WASHINGTON (AP) — A slice of corporate America thinks tea partyers have overstayed their welcome in Washington and should be shown the door in next year’s congressional elections[. . .]

Call it the wrath of establishment Republicans and corporate America, always considered the best of friends. Since the Republican takeover of the House in 2010, they’ve watched the GOP insurgents slow a transportation bill and reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank, block a treaty governing the high seas and stand in the way of comprehensive immigration legislation.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

Jesse Ventura/Howard Stern For President 2016

Jesse “The Body” Ventura for President!When asked whether he would run for president someday, former Minnesota governor and former professional wrestler Jesse Ventura said: sure, why not.“I like the idea of waging war on the Democrats and the Republicans,” Ventura told POLITICO. “I enjoy it because they’re so vulnerable. They’re so easy. If I can debate them, I can beat them.”

Jesse Ventura has said in the past that he did not want to run for president, but that has now changed.

VIA Politico

“It all comes down to whether Howard will do it, and I need Howard,” said Ventura, adding that Stern’s access to satellite radio — and millions of listeners — will not only help out fundraising but free Ventura from the Federal Communications Commission.

“I can use his radio station right up to the day of the election to win this thing without spending any money,” Ventura said.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

Was Christianity an Ancient Roman Psy-Op?

Religion is most definitely used to maintain order in a society. During the time of Emperor Constantinus (Constantine), he
used Christianity to consolidate his rule
over the Roman Empire.  But what if there
was a conspiracy that predates his rule
altogether?

VIA RAW Story

The Christian faith is the result of the most successful psy-ops program in history, according to an American Bible scholar.

Joseph Atwill will present his controversial theory Oct. 19 in London that the New Testament was written by first-century Roman aristocrats as part of a sophisticated government project to help pacify Jews in occupied territories.

Atwill, author of “Caesar’s Messiah,” claims he’s found ancient confessions by the scriptures’ authors that they invented Jesus Christ and his story as basically a form of propaganda.

“Jewish sects in Palestine at the time, who were waiting for a prophesied warrior Messiah, were a constant source of violent insurrection during the first century,” Atwill said.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

Sarin Gas or Natural Gas? Reason for War in Syria

Now I see why the U.S. needs to put boots on the ground in Syria:
we need more vespene gas!

VIA LongIslandPress

The more deadly and confusing the situation in Syria becomes, the further away we travel from addressing the true reason the world’s superpowers have suddenly taken great interest in the safety and security of the Syrian people. Thus far, it has been estimated that more than 100,000 Syrians have lost their lives during this civil war and the refugee situation has become dire. Yet despite such heavy civilian losses, it wasn’t until the world learned of a chemical weapons attack outside of Damascus on Aug. 21, 2013 that this war presented an imminent policy decision for the United States and other stakeholder nations in the Middle East.

The keen interest in Syria on the part of the U.S. that the mainstream media has largely overlooked has its roots in the unsuccessful occupation of Iraq.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

Cracking the Lottery Code

Luck really is for suckers.

VIA Fox News

The random winning numbers on lottery tickets aren’t exactly random at all.

Mohan Srivastava is the man who figured out how to beat a scratch lottery game — and he didn’t even profit from it.

Srivastava, who was featured in this month’s Wired magazine, is a geological statistician by trade and is naturally adept at analyzing numbers and realizing patterns. His day job involves scoping out potential gold mines and determining the how much gold they might contain.

Cracking the lottery wasn’t all that different. Srivastava, using the same math, was able to predict winning tickets for a Canadian Tic-Tac-Toe scratch lottery game 9 out of 10 times. The method is surprisingly simple but his road to discovery involved a bit of chance.

Holding degrees from MIT and Stanford, Srivastava was never drawn to the allure of the lottery — given the inherent propensity to lose long term.… Read the rest

Continue Reading