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Living Freedom by Claire Wolfe. Musings about personal freedom and finding it within ourselves.

Want to Comment on a blog post? Look for and click on the blue No Comments or # Comments at the end of each post.

Archive for the ‘Privacy and self ownership’ Category

Claire Wolfe

Thursday links

Thursday, June 12th, 2014

Okay, cat people. Enjoy. It’s a commercial, but another good one:

If the voice and approach sound familiar, it’s because you remember Sad Dog Diary and Sad Cat Diary.

Claire Wolfe

Week drawing to its hectic, weary end links

Thursday, June 5th, 2014
Claire Wolfe

Omni-biometric surveillance: Coming to your neighborhood soon …

Wednesday, June 4th, 2014

… courtesy of the U.S. military and the war in Afghanistan.

The stated goal of the Afghan effort is no less than the collection of biometric data for every living person in Afghanistan. At a conference with Afghan officials in 2010, the commander of the U.S. Army’s Task Force Biometrics Col. Craig Osborne told the attendees that the collection of biometric data is not simply about “identifying terrorists and criminals,” but that “it can be used to enable progress in society and has countless applications for the provision of services to the citizens of Afghanistan.” According to Osborne, biometrics provide the Afghan government with “identity dominance” enabling them to know who their citizens are and link actions with actors.

Yep. It’s always tried out first on prisoners, “enemies,” the mentally defective, children, and others who aren’t in a position to resist effectively. Then it comes to our neighborhoods.

But no problem! Hey, it’s to help “provision of services”! I’m sure they’ll drop the creepy “identity dominance” discription when it comes time to apply all this to us. It’ll go away. Just like “Total Information Awareness” did.


(Article is from April. I just found it this morning — and I don’t think much will have changed (at least not changed for the better) since it was published.)

Claire Wolfe


Tuesday, June 3rd, 2014

Last week during the install-a-door-and-discover-that-your-whole-house-is-rotten project, the kid doing gofer work took advantage of his boss’s momentary absence to wander into the kitchen, where I was on the computer, and talk to me.

Now I’ve exchanged maybe five sentences with this kid in the past, all completely casual. But with virtually no preamble, he informs me that he’s had a bad month because on his birthday he came home to discover his girlfriend and his roommate doing guess what on the living room sofa. He commences to go into detail.

I make a few politely sympathetic noises while trying to indicate that I’m doing something really, really — I mean really, vitally! — important on my computer. I eventually have to say outright that I’m deadlining.

I’m embarrassed that any young man would think that a stranger either would want to hear the intimate details of his relationships or should hear them.

Where are the boundaries? Are there boundaries any more?


« Read the rest of this entry »

Claire Wolfe

Heads-up for TrueCrypt users

Thursday, May 29th, 2014

Nobody seems sure what’s going on, not even the spectacularly well-informed Bruce Schneier. But TrueCrypt, the whole-disc encryption program many have relied on for a decade, has either been mysteriously compromised or somebody’s pulled off a hoax. Brian Krebs thinks it’s the real deal and that the secretive TrueCrypt team is sending us all a warning.

As some have pointed out, the cryptic “official” announcement that “TrueCrypt is not secure as it may contain unfixed security issues …” could be read as “Not Secure As …”

Let’s hope for a hoax. TrueCrypt being subverted would be a major heartbreaker. And always … be careful out there.

(Tip o’ hat to S.)

Claire Wolfe

There go the last thin shreds of medical privacy

Wednesday, May 28th, 2014

Is is ominous that these two stories came out within days of each other?

Pills containing tracking chips are now being tested on real people. (H/T Wendy)

The fedgov is creating a “biosurveillance” system to gain near real-time access to our medical records. In the name of “national security,” of course.

And is it even more ominous that these plans are moving ahead just as the fedgov consolidates its control over the U.S. entire U.S. medical system?

Claire Wolfe

Friday links

Friday, May 23rd, 2014
Claire Wolfe

Thursday links

Thursday, May 15th, 2014
Claire Wolfe

Weekend links

Sunday, May 11th, 2014
Claire Wolfe

Operation Choke Point: freedom, guns, and civilization

Thursday, May 8th, 2014

When I first started reading about Operation Choke Point, I wasn’t even sure it was real. Or perhaps it was real but egregiously exaggerated.

The more I read, the more ominous the future looks.

The great Maggie McNeill has an excellent overview. (H/T S.)

David Codrea covered it with an eye to its effect on gun rights. Then came back again for a broader look.

My worries are broader yet. Covert ostracism of groups of people — any group of peaceable people — starts a dangerous (to the point of deadly) trend. Covert ostracism by private corporations at the direction of government is fascism (and I don’t use that term in any figurative or overblown way; that’s one normal function of the corporate-government partnership that’s the definition and essence of fascism).

Covert ostracism as a tool of government for getting its way when it can’t get its way through open law-spewing is … a big, big step on the path to destruction. Of trust. Of human decency. Of the concept of equal protection under law (never mind that equal protection has always been a myth; even a myth can have a civilizing purpose). Of civil society. Of so many valuable things.

Yeah, we’re already on that path. I know. But once you start shutting masses of peaceable people and businesses out of normal commerce, you create pariahs. You don’t drive them out of business; you merely drive them … elsewhere. You also drive them to be something other than what they are.

And like so many other attempts to force some governmental ideal of “morality” on people, you end up driving immorality.

Of course, you also create Freedom Outlaws. So the ostracism promised by Operation Choke Point (and its inevitable successors) wouldn’t be a total loss. But OCP is both a sign of and an “advance” upon the irreplaceable loss of all that makes civilization worthy of the name.

Claire Wolfe

Monday links

Monday, May 5th, 2014
Claire Wolfe

Midweek links

Wednesday, April 30th, 2014
  • This is both fun and educational: How Secure is My Password? Just in case, I suggest you not enter any real passwords, but something entirely different that just has the same general mix of numbers, letters, and symbols as any password you might use. And of course, how long it takes a PC to crack your password and how long it takes some creepazoid with the full power of government behind him are two very different things.
  • Why we should all watch Groundhog Day. (Contains spoilers; but then, is there anybody who hasn’t already seen or doesn’t already know how that great movie unfolds?)
  • Don’t you just hate that trendy new put-down by our superiors on the left? Well, here’s somebody who snotty “check your privilege” types the smackdown they deserve.
  • John Lott has some good observations about Bloomberg’s latest.
  • Bob Hoskins has died. Damn. He was a terrific actor and sure was a lot of fun in Roger Rabbit.


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