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The Matrix

Journal Journal: Mysteries in the Snowden Revelations 28

+5 Insightful, over at Naked Capitalism.

"There are some other mysteries in the Snowden revelations. With the massive surveillance, it should have been easy to unravel the drug trade. This suggests a large involvement by the government. The other obvious target is the financial system. Transactions may be encrypted, but any M&A activity will leave a huge footprint of phone calls, travels to company headquarters, involvement of law and accounting firms."

Books

Journal Journal: Why Are Schoolchidren in USA Today Required? 5

Why are they required to read "Diary of Ann Frank", but not "Black Like Me"?

Which one is really relevant to the actual understanding of social, civil and human rights in the society that they are a part of?

Which one do they have a daily context for approaching and doing something about?

Privacy

Journal Journal: What Can We Learn from LoTR About the Surveillance State? 2

Slate has an article: The Eye of Sauron Is the Modern Surveillance State. Although the insights provided are not necessarily unique, and echo the observations of some like Bruce Schneier, Glenn Greenwald and Chris Hedges, they do illustrate them nicely, through an unexpected allegorical reading of Tolkien's familiar epic. The gist is that unlike most dystopian fantasy - especially the explicitly political variety - Tolkien understood that the minions of absolute power were untrusted by that power, itself. It's also worth reading for the defense of the fantasy-epic genre, which offered Tolkien the opportunity to explore themes like the "distinction between omnipotence and omniscience," that were under-examined in modern idioms, but relevant to Tolkien from a theological interest and connected to the experience under tyranny.

United States

Journal Journal: "Another Important Difference" 1

"Another important difference between my administration and the Bush administration is that when the Bush administration secretly spied on you, the Bush administration could not point to a single judge willing to say their program was legal. We, on the other hand, can point to such a judge. I'm not going to tell you who this judge is, or why he or she thinks our program is legal. If I did that, it would, obviously be harder for me to convince you that the program is legal. Instead, I'm just going to tell you that we secretly found one judge who was willingly to secretly say that it was legal for us to collect all of your data..."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w25GDPlF12g

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There is no likelihood man can ever tap the power of the atom. -- Robert Millikan, Nobel Prize in Physics, 1923

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