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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

Crazyweek links

Thursday, February 18th, 2016
Claire Wolfe

Could it be? Does a big techco finally recognize who really butters its bread?

Thursday, February 18th, 2016

Okay, everybody has now seen Tim Cook’s letter (yes, even Joel).

Short version: Court orders Apple to develop new software for the fedgov that will compromise every Apple customer’s security. Fedgov lies and says it wants only to crack one terrorist’s phone. Cook responds like a real privacy advocate. This response is neither altruism nor political activism. It is — finally! — a tech company recognizing who actually pays its bills. Among other things.

« Read the rest of this entry »

Claire Wolfe

Tuesday links

Tuesday, February 16th, 2016
  • In case Donald Trump wins, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, will roll out the red carpet to Americans. No word on where we’ll go if anybody else wins, but to hell in a handbasket seems a likely option. (H/T MJR)
  • “Nino at the Bridge.” Quote: You know your country has big trouble when the death of one man tosses your political reckonings, your expectations, your fundamental understandings into the briar patch … (Yes, the author’s a bit more enamored of the Constitution that you probably are, but Scalia was a good man.)
  • Borepatch: Don’t buy a Samsung smart TV. I think I’d make that don’t buy any smart TV unless you can easily take it offline. Big Brother will be listening.
  • There are good reasons Europe’s Jews are so nervous. And this article covers only the “right” half of them.
  • You mean Radio Flyer is still around? Here I thought they disappeared with coonskin caps and the original hula hoops. But boy, their little red wagons sure have changed.
  • Since so many hereabouts are so fond of things that go boom, whoosh, and pow, I present Josh Bloom on fluorine: the element from hell. Complete with videos!
Claire Wolfe

Wednesday links

Wednesday, February 10th, 2016
Claire Wolfe

Weekend links

Saturday, January 30th, 2016
  • Well. Now we know why the “service economy” keeps growing even as everything else falls into the Dumpster. The whole story in one graph.
  • Here’s another big story in one graph. This one’s about gold.
  • Are MSM outlets Photoshopping pix of Hillary (or using Photoshopped pix provided by her campaign) to make her look as much as 30 years younger than she really is?
  • This is precisely why we should be using email encryption even for sharing our chocolate chip cookie recipes. Smack that snotty, crowing NSA right in its face. (Tip o’ hat to S.)
  • Will Switzerland end fractional reserve banking?
  • Down with the tyranny of the Fitbit.
  • I know some will object that this little “flash story” is too optimistic. Okay. Still a beautiful, hopeful piece, though. (H/T MJR)
  • And this, dropped into comments by TSO, really is too optimistic. Or swimming too hopelessly against the tide. It also uses technology (provided by industrialization) to decry industrialization. Nevertheless, some truth there.
Claire Wolfe

Wednesday links

Wednesday, January 27th, 2016
  • The feds have broken the Oregon standoff with arrests and one killing. A remnant remains. Leaders were apparently lured out on the pretext of attending a community meeting and trapped at a roadblock. Why? Why not wait them out? (H/T db)
  • David Codrea exposes and righteously blasts the latest junk-science study op-ed from “prestigious” anti-gun medical sources.
  • “Does stupidity cause gun control, or does gun control cause stupidity?” Bear Bussjaeger speculates.
  • I’ve never understood the mentality that official (or family) wrongdoing is fine as long as no one exposes it and that any person exposing the wrongdoing is somehow the problem. I’ve experienced that mentality, God knows (haven’t we all?), but I’ll never understand it as long as I live. Anyhow … sometimes justice eventually prevails. (H/T jed in comments)
  • Speaking of exposing wrongdoing … Are we witnessing the fall of the House of Clinton? We can only hope.
  • Kinda funny. Not surprising, though. The most overconfident students (in one study, at least) are in political science. (Even more interesting where the least confident are — the fields that require hard evidence.)
  • Another drawback of license plate readers. Ugh. Ick. Ptooey!
  • The most fascinating thing about this grid-down survivalist book is that it’s written by respected, ultra-establishment newsman Ted Koppel.
Claire Wolfe

Tuesday links

Tuesday, January 26th, 2016
  • In the schadenfreude department: Melissa Click, the social-justice pecksniff who shoved one reporter and called for “muscle” to remove another from a public demonstration, has been charged with assault.
  • Despite using annoying “gun violence” language, this CNN article brings the good news that mental health professionals aren’t likely to sit still for Obama administration attempts to label every mentally ill person as too dangerous to own a firearm. With statistics, even!
  • From Microsoft: useful, creepy, or both?
  • If this is accurate in describing how classified material “escapes” from secure servers and ends up on private ones, then Hillary and several of her staffers should already be sitting in jail awaiting trial.
  • Everybody was so busy panicking over the recent snowpocalypse that they forgot what billions of little kids have known since prehistory: snow can be fun. (Tip o’ hat to PT)
  • In your cheery dog news for the day: Alabama bloodhound decides on her own to enter a half-marathon; wins ribbon. (H/T ML)
  • And Brigid writes a dogtionary.
Claire Wolfe

Between rains and interviews

Monday, January 25th, 2016

Today we were between rainstorms. In the same way the Inuit are said (even if inaccurately) to have 200 words for snow, the NorthWet ought to have a word for this. Something like “interrainum.”

Be that as it may, by late morning I was also between interviews for this cannabis article I’m working on. I’d just wrapped up one at the coolest retail store and didn’t have another until tomorrow.

The day was already pleasant and just about then turned bright blue. I took the dogs walking on a river trail. We moseyed along in comfort, no fleece-lined jacket for Robbie’s old bones and joints, not even a sweater for me. Then, despite a determination to econommize this month, I splurged a whole $5.63 on a chicken basket (yeah, I really know how to live it up!) and sat in the car near the trail, sharing lunch with the dogs.

About then it began clouding over and by the time we returned home, the day was gray again. But still blessedly dry.

Tomorrow I’m set to meet a couple who had their hearts broken by the cannabis trade — and by the feds — in California and who are starting afresh here.

After that, my final interview is with the area’s pioneer of commercial medical cannabis gardening. Until recently, the medical system has been completely separate from the i502 recreational and I was going to stay away from it because there’s so much else to cover. But last year the legislature began the uncomfortable task of trying to merge the two systems and this guy is in line to score himself a nice, big pair of producer (grower) and processor licenses. He’s also a charmer who probably gets more press than anybody in local cannabusiness. He’s as connected and informed as anybody around, so I stand to learn a lot about what’s going on in the trade.

Wish me luck. The article is growing and I may have to go back to my editors and re-pitch it to them as a two-parter. I’ve already begun the first draft and it’s shaping up as one of the best pieces, as well as being one of the most fun projects, I’ve done in years.

I am loving all these former “criminals” and their newer partners in non-crime.

—–

On another subject, in case you missed it, David Haywood Young dropped into the comment section today to announce that he’s got a new Kindle book, Take Back Your Privacy: The Barefoot Anarchist’s Guide to Navigating Today’s Digital Landscape, and that’ll be free for five days, starting Tuesday. I’ve only read what’s available on “look inside,” but it seems well-written and done in an engaging, easy style.

Claire Wolfe

Well, so much for “do not track”

Wednesday, January 20th, 2016

You remember I had to refresh Firefox last week, wiping away all my settings and add-ons. NoScript and a few key settings went back on right away and so far, so good. No crashing.

In that quick re-set I made sure that “Do not track” was enabled. I didn’t, however, do anything with cookie management.

Just now I was cruising through Firefox Preferences looking for additional settings to put back to normal and I had to laugh. My browser was infested by hundreds of tracking cookies — so many that I couldn’t wipe them out selectively and keep the “good” cookies that enable quick logins and such. I just had to blow all cookies away and start afresh.

So it’s true what they say and what anyone living in the age of Little Brother should assume: “Do not track” means “Oh, please, Mr. or Ms. Ad-Person; despite the fact that I know you’re going to ignore this plea, I’m still going to go ahead and beg you — beg so very, very humbly on bended knee! — not to track me.”

Firefox is now set where it ought to be. No third-party cookies allowed, period. All other cookies deleted upon exit, except those I explicitly want to keep. During long online sessions I’ll periodically go in and clear cookies that benefit some website more than they benefit me.

The “Do not track” box is still checked. Just because it was easier than unchecking it.

Now off to see if I can install a new ad blocker to replace the sadly compromised (and possibly crash-causing) AdBlockPlus. (UPDATE: I’ve decided to try uBlock Origin. Will let you know how it goes.)

Claire Wolfe

Wednesday links

Wednesday, January 20th, 2016
  • Wow. But not surprising. The ATF and the Obama administration, via Fast & Furious, supplied drug lord El Chapo with .50 cal weaponry.
  • Zombie ships ply the ocean in hopes of paying just the interest, not the principle, on shipowners’ debt. One more place all that central bank bubble capital has been going for the last eight years.
  • Right analysis? But completely crazy proposed solution to global bubbles.
  • With state legislatures in session, it’s become political silly season. Most of the goofy new bills will never pass, so you can stop sending me alarming emails about junk that might not even make it out of committee, okay? But politicians are getting their jollies with bills enabling random acquaintances to deprive you of your gun rights, create new gun bans even in southern states, and requiring “journalists” to register with the state. Yeah, that one’ll really meet the First Amendment test, for sure.
  • Good news, however! Although politics clearly rots your brain, you may be pleased to know that, contrary to recent reports, cannabis probably doesn’t.
  • Being the grey man in a surveillance society. (Jim Bovard, who led me to this link, gets called out for one of his notable failures in the grey-man department. OTOH, I don’t think Jim has ever aimed to be grey.)
  • Or you could become the opposite of the grey man. Like this first guy in the world to travel with a passport chip in his hand. (Via David Codrea.)
  • RIP, Bitcoin? Despite this week’s developments, I don’t know whether Bitcoin is dead or not. I’m outside the Bitcoin universe. I do know, however, that there has always been good reason to watch from the sidelines before jumping in. The volatility. The out-of-thin-air nature of the currency. The ability of small groups to control it. And — above all — the fact that true believers have promoted Bitcoin at me as though it were the second coming of Jesus. Never a good sign, that.
  • She got jilted at the altar, sold all her stuff and became a world traveling writer.
Claire Wolfe

What is lost when a civilization wearies

Tuesday, January 19th, 2016

Commentariat member Dana got me reading Thomas Cahill’s How the Irish Saved Civilization: The Untold Story of Ireland’s Heroic Role From the Fall of Rome to the Rise of Medieval Europe. It’s short, lively, and even if it’s not totally satisfying in describing how the Irish did the saving, it’s full of smack-upside-the-head insights.

The best material is on Rome’s collapse. (The first chapter was so persuasive it darned near made me feel sorry for tax collectors.) Before I return the book to the library, I want to post a couple of paragraphs. In the first, Cahill is mostly quoting from Kenneth Clark’s Civilization (spelling Americanized).

« Read the rest of this entry »

Claire Wolfe

Monday links

Monday, January 18th, 2016
  • Brad, over at WendyMcElroy.com, says, “Adios, Forbes.” I’ll follow that with my own “Sayonara.” I used to check Forbes often; now it won’t let me in even when I try to accommodate its demands. Seems that’s just as well, really.
  • You might not favor this guy’s environmental stance, but the way he went about saving a patch of old-grown forest is an inspiration.
  • Yikes! Village endures “biblical” rains. (Commentariat member Roger: I hope you don’t live anywhere near this place!) (H/T jed)
  • David Codrea reminds us of a few more things Mike Vanderboegh has done for freedom.
  • Google’s (unsurprisingly) creep plan to replace passwords with 24-hour behavior monitoring. Eeeeew.
 
 


 
 

 
 
 
 
 
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