Tag Archives | Counterculture

The dark web: what it is, how it works, and why it’s not going away

via Vox:

2014 saw the continued growth of the dark web, a collection of underground websites that allow people to engage in often-illegal activities beyond the reach of law enforcement. Here’s what the dark web is, how it works, and why it’s not going away any time soon.

What is the dark web?

The dark web is a general term for the seedier corners of the web, where people can interact online without worrying about the watchful eye of the authorities. Usually, these sites are guarded by encryption mechanisms such as Tor that allow users to visit them anonymously. But there are also sites that don’t rely on Tor, such as password-protected forums where hackers trade secrets and stolen credit card numbers, that can also be considered part of the dark web.

People use the dark web for a variety of purposes: buying and selling drugs, discussing hacking techniques and selling hacking services, trading child pornography, and so forth.

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“You Can’t Stop the Signal” — An Analysis of Social Media Activism

Essam Sharaf  (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Wikimedia Commons.

Essam Sharaf (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Wikimedia Commons.

Via World Policy Blog

Welcome back to the World Policy “Best of” list. Today we pull back the curtain on the Egyptian revolution and reveal its somewhat dark underbelly. Political activist Mahmoud Salem, who tweets under the name “sandmonkey,” shares how the introduction of social media into Egyptian culture sparked the Egyptian revolution where he played a seminal social media role. At the same time, these same tools now jeopardize the creation of any political infrastructure capable of governing effectively. 

By Mahmoud Salem

CAIRO, Egypt—As a child of the 1980s, I grew up watching science fiction television shows and movies—all set in the “not-so-distant future.” Holographic communication, teleportation, and flying cars were central tenets of that universe. And while I marveled at the prospect of these technologies, I was most fascinated by the “magical technological device”—that could be used to complete any task, from basic communication to dissemination of news to national security.

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Future of love and sex: monogamy no longer the default, say experts

By LightvsRight via Deviant Art (CC BY 3.0)

By LightvsRight via Deviant Art (CC BY 3.0)

via IEET:

There’s a pervasive notion that monogamous relationships are the end-all-be-all – the default pact in human couplings that keep the fabric of society from being torn apart. But growing numbers of scientists believe monogamy is not our biological default; and may not even represent the best road to happiness.

Nearly all mammalian species demonstrate sexual promiscuity. Even mate-for-life prairie voles, the animal kingdom’s poster child of monogamous relationships produce pups from different fathers twenty percent of the time. Moreover, say historians, for humans, promiscuous behavior is not new at all.

    Anthropologists have uncovered clues to how our Paleolithic ancestors lived. Before the advent of agriculture, humans faced a short, brutal lifespan. Some survived to age 50, but most died young or at birth with average life expectancy in the 30-to-40 range.

With such a short lifespan, ancestral children were likely to experiment with sex by age six.

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Anton LaVey Blackhouse Photographs 1998 by Nicholas Syracuse

 Nicholas Syracuse "LaVey Altar" 2012 courtesy of Stephen Romano Gallery, Brooklyn

Nicholas Syracuse “LaVey Altar” 2012 courtesy of Stephen Romano Gallery, Brooklyn

 

Anton LaVey Blackhouse Photographs 1998 by Nicholas Syracuse 2012.

The house and HQ for the Church of Satan in San Francisco.

The house was leveled to make way for some cheap condos.

The murals were designed and painted by Anton LaVey, founder of the Church of Satan, according to information provided to the photographer by LaVey’s daughter Karla.

Included in the exhibition “Abundatia Cornu Copiae” December 4 – February 28 2015

The photographs were taken in 1998 and printed in 2012.

at Stephen Romano Gallery, Brooklyn

http://www.shishigami.com/srfa/copiae/

 

 Nicholas Syracuse "Octo" 2012 courtesy of Stephen Romano Gallery, Brooklyn

Nicholas Syracuse “Octo” 2012 courtesy of Stephen Romano Gallery, Brooklyn

 

 Nicholas Syracuse "Fire" 2012 courtesy of Stephen Romano Gallery, Brooklyn

Nicholas Syracuse “Fire” 2012 courtesy of Stephen Romano Gallery, Brooklyn

 

 Nicholas Syracuse "Devil" 2012 courtesy of Stephen Romano Gallery, Brooklyn

Nicholas Syracuse “Devil” 2012 courtesy of Stephen Romano Gallery, Brooklyn

 

 Nicholas Syracuse "Merbeast" 2012 courtesy of Stephen Romano Gallery, Brooklyn

Nicholas Syracuse “Merbeast” 2012 courtesy of Stephen Romano Gallery, Brooklyn

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It’s Not Rape if He’s a God–Or Thinks He Is

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Via IEET:

Stories like the Virgin Birth lack freely given female consent. Why don’t they bother us more? Powerful gods and demi-gods impregnating human women—it’s a common theme in the history of religion, and it’s more than a little rapey.

Zeus comes to Danae in the form of a golden shower, cutting “the knot of intact virginity” and leaving her pregnant with the Greek hero, Perseus.

Jupiter forcibly overcomes Europa by transforming himself into a white bull and abducting her. He imprisons her on the Isle of Crete, over time fathering three children.

Pan copulates with a shepherdess to produce Hermes.

The legendary founders of Rome, Romulus and Remus are conceived when the Roman god Mars impregnates Rea Silvia, a vestal virgin.

Helen of Troy, the rare female offspring of a god-human mating, is produced when Zeus takes the form of a swan to get access to Leda.

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TRYPOPHOBIA by Colin Christian

Colin Christian "Teeth" from "Trypophobia" at Stephen Romano Gallery

Colin Christian “Teeth” from “Trypophobia” at Stephen Romano Gallery

From the catalog foreword by Kris Kuksi:

“In his debut show at Stephen Romano gallery, Colin Christian’s work sets the audience up for confrontation. With either a reaction of instant repulsion or a desire to tend to gaping, teeth-filled sores, the exhibition seems as though for ‘freaks only’. Far from the pin-up gal or anime charged figures, but the influence of science fiction lingers and the perfection of flesh presents itself from yet another perspective.

“The viewer meets these works mid-cycle of injury where a sensation of the tightening, scabbing process is taking place as a result from coagulating fluid secretions. One could spar over the statement that these works relate to the process of healing. Yet, another twist holds the question: could this actually still be in the venue of a cyber erotic play that just digs a bit deeper, forgetting the superficiality perfection of skin and dives into what happens when the flesh is pierced and broken?”

 

Colin Christian "Insides", detail, from "Trypophobia" at Stephen Romano Gallery

Colin Christian “Insides”, detail, from “Trypophobia” at Stephen Romano Gallery

 

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Plaque to mark Luddite uprising

Via Dewsbury Reporter

A plaque commemorating the Luddite uprisings two centuries ago was unveiled in Roberttown last week.

The plaque, installed outside the Star Inn pub, is one of three to be placed in the area by the Spen Valley Civic Society as part of its Luddite project.

The group secured £2,390 from Kirklees Council for the project, to fund plaques and information boards at sites in Roberttown, Liversedge and Hartshead.

Civic Society member Gordon North said: “We have been planning this project for around three years and this is the culmination of all the hard work.

“It’s all about trying to give people a better understanding of how important the valley has been throughout history.”

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Occultist father of rocketry ‘written out’ of Nasa’s history

GALCIT Group members in the Arroyo Seco, November 1936. L-R: Rudolph Schott, Amo Smith, Frank Malina, Ed Forman, and Jack ParsonsNASA/JPL

GALCIT Group members in the Arroyo Seco, November 1936. L-R: Rudolph Schott, Amo Smith, Frank Malina, Ed Forman, and Jack ParsonsNASA/JPL

Via Wired UK:

Jack Parsons was a founding member of Nasa’s Jet Propulsion Lab, with some crediting him as being one of the “fathers of rocketry” and others joking that JPL was actually Jack Parsons’ Laboratory, but you won’t find much about him on Nasa’s websites. Parsons’ legacy as an engineer and chemist has been somewhat overshadowed by his interest in the occult and, and has led to what some critics describe as a rewriting of the history books.

“He’s lived in the footnotes since his death. He’s a forgotten figure,” says biographer George Pendle, author of Strange Angel: The Otherworldly Life of Rocket Scientist John Whiteside Parson (Jack’s full name).

Pendle did an “archeological dig” into Parsons’ life after finding a mention of him in a science book.

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12 Ways People are Being Screwed by the System at Christmas Time

Matt Reinbold CC BY-SA 2.0

Matt Reinbold CC BY-SA 2.0

Via Alternet:

If Christmas magic were real, America’s political and business leaders — the people with power and money — would speak on behalf of the nation they’ve debased:

1. To Our Most Neglected Citizens

By the time the Koch brothers wake up on Christmas morning, the wealth the two men will have accumulated throughout the night could get a room for the night for every one of the 633,000 homeless Americans.

To Americans without a place to live, we apologize for a society that allows almost all of its new wealth to be redistributed to people who are already rich.

2. To Our Most Vulnerable Citizens

Eight years ago 2 out of every 100 children were homeless. Now it’s over 3 out of 100, a stunning 50% increase.

At the other end of society, elderly people are the most unequal group among us.

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This Is the Stupidest Anti-Science Bullshit of 2014

Via Mother Jones:

2014 had its fair share of landmark scientific accomplishments: dramatic cuts to the cost of sequencing a genome; sweeping investigations of climate change impacts in the US; advances in private-sector space travel, and plenty more. But there was also no shortage of high-profile figures eager to publicly and shamelessly denounce well-established science—sometimes with serious consequences for public policy. So without further ado, the most egregious science denial of 2014:

Basically everything said by Donald Trump:

You can always count on The Donald to pull no punches. He got started early this year, when he pointed to freezing temperatures in parts of the country as evidence that “this very expensive GLOBAL WARMING bullshit has got to stop” and then told Fox News that the global warming “hoax” was merely the result of scientists“having a lot of fun.”

In September, Trump went on a Twitter screed linking vaccines to autism.

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