Internet death sentence

AT&T disconnects whole families from the internet because someone in their house is accused of copyright infringement

Cory Doctorow at Boing Boing:

The customers who are being disconnected have never been able to face their accusers or have a day in court. The people they live with are not accused of any wrongdoing. The internet they are losing is likely the only option they have for broadband — or one of two options, with the other one likely being a cable company like Comcast who may now join AT&T in a race to the bottom.

The internet is not a video-on-demand service, it’s the nervous system of the 21st century. Terminating someone from the internet terminates their access to family, education, employment, civic and political engagement, health care information, and virtually everything else we use to measure whether a society is functioning well for its citizens.

Harry Truman: Born to lose

Everybody knew for months that Truman was going to lose to Thomas Dewey, so much so that Dewey took long breaks from campaigning, says Lillian Cunningham on the Washington Post’s Presidential podcast. And by the time Truman left office, he was staggeringly unpopular. But now he’s one of the most-respected and best-loved Presidents in American history.

In the newest episode of the Presidential podcast, biographer David McCullough looks at some of the most difficult calls President Truman made during his time in the White House, including the decisions to drop the atomic bomb, push for civil rights legislation and fire Gen. Douglas MacArthur.

Washington Post polling manager Scott Clement also joins the episode to explain the biggest polling failure in presidential history—when Truman won the 1948 election, despite the many polls that seemed to show he didn’t stand a chance.

Idiots

Trump makes it easy to forget what a dumpster fire all the other GOP nomination hopefuls were

Rick Santorum said pregnancy from rape is a “gift from God” and compared gay relationships to “man-on-dog” sex — and he signed a pledge saying that African-Americans had it better during slavery.

He’s not an aberration, either. The whole cadre of GOP presidential nomination hopefuls were a bumper-crop of absolute terribleness: Rick Perry’s summer hunting camp is called “Niggerhead” and he pledged to eliminate three cabinet-level government agencies, but couldn’t remember which ones. He is a young-Earth Creationist, an anonymous GOP governor once said that Perry was “like George W Bush, but without the brains.”

Bobby Jindal named himself after a character on the Brady Bunch and bankrupted Louisiana by cutting taxes on the wealthy. Carly Fiorina is a climate-change denier who tanked HP and thinks Planned Parenthood sells foetal organs. Rand Paul wants to eliminate environmental and civil rights legislation and eliminate welfare. Scott Walker said he could be trusted to fight Isis because he’d defeated Wisconsin’s teachers’ unions. Chris Christie is basically a mafia don, but not a competent one. Jeb Bush thinks that health insurance can be eliminated by giving people Apple watches and that poverty can be solved by everyone “working longer hours.”

Source: Boing Boing (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0). Thanks, Cory!

Civil war

In 1979, the Ku Klux Klan murdered members of the American Communist Workers Party at a rally in a North Carolina small town. Police looked the other way.

39 Shots – Criminal

In 1979, a group of labor organizers protested outside a Ku Klux Klan screening of the 1915 white supremacist film, The Birth of a Nation. Nelson Johnson and Signe Waller-Foxworth remember shouting at armed Klansmen and burning a confederate flag, until eventually police forced the KKK inside and the standoff ended without violence. The labor organizers felt they’d won a small victory, and planned a much bigger anti-Klan demonstration in Greensboro, North Carolina. They advertised with the slogan: “Death to the Klan” and set the date for November 3rd, 1979.

As protestors assembled, a caravan of nine cars appeared, and a man in a pick-up truck yelled: “You asked for the Klan! Now you’ve got them!” Thirty-nine shots were fired in eighty-eight seconds, and five protestors were killed. The city of Greensboro is still grappling with the complicated legacy of that day.

Cops already plotting how to get around Supreme Court ruling requiring a warrant to search cell phones

Notice how the focus is on figuring out more ways to search phones, not more ways to make sure they obey the law. This doesn’t make me feel any safer. Quite the opposite.

Law Enforcement, DOJ Already Plotting How To Get Around Supreme Court’s Warrant Requirement To Search Phones

The BBC, The Guardian, and Daily Mail push back on Google’s right to be forgotten

Among the first beneficiaries of the right to be forgotten: An investment banker involved in the global financial crisis.

“Google is confirming the fears of many in the industry that the ‘right to be forgotten’ will be abused to curb freedom of expression and to suppress legitimate journalism that is in the public interest,” writes BBC economics editor Robert Peston.

This is a terrible law. There is no right to be forgotten.

‘Right to be forgotten’: BBC, The Guardian, Daily Mail push back on Google

The US government is rolling out a “driver’s license for the Internet.” No way this could go wrong.

The National Strategy for Trusted Identies in Cyberspace starts testing in government agencies in two US states. “Calling this move ill-timed would be the most gracious way of putting it,” says Techdirt’s Tim Cushing. (US Government Beings Rollout Of Its ‘Driver’s License For the Internet’)

[A]t a time when the public’s trust in government is ant an all-time low, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST – itself still reeling a bit from NSA-related blowback) is testing the program in Michigan and Pennsylvania. The first tests appear to be exclusively aimed at accessing public programs, like government assistance. The government believes this ID system will help reduce fraud and overhead, by eliminating duplicated ID efforts across multiple agencies.

But the program isn’t strictly limited to government use. The ultimate goal is a replacement of many logins and passwords people maintain to access content and participate in comment threads and forums. This “solution,” while somewhat practical, also raises considerable privacy concerns.

The keepers of the identity credentials wouldn’t be the government, but rather a third party. Banks, technology compaies, and cellphone service providers were suggested as keepers when the program was introduced in 2011. “[S]o theoretically Google or Verizon could have access to a comprehensive profile of who you are that’s shared with every site you visit, as mandated by the government.”

The proposal also raises security concerns, creating a central store of identitiy information susceptible to hacking. And with the government behind the proposal, citizens may not have the option of opting out.

Here’s the original statement on Whitehouse.gov: “President Obama Releases the National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace.” It cites banking and online health records as example applications.