My friend Borepatch alerted us to the following:
What could possibly go wrong?
A new “smart” Barbie doll’s eavesdropping and data-gathering functions have privacy advocates crying foul.
Toymaker Mattel bills Hello Barbie as the world’s first “interactive doll” due to its ability to record children’s playtime conversations and even respond once the encrypted audio is transmitted to a cloud server, much in the way that Apple’s Siri voice assistant works.
No word on whether Mattel plans to share suspected Double Plus Ungood Thoughtcrime with Big Brother.
No doubt the software has had extensive security review to make sure it’s not hackable. (snark font!)
We already have ‘them’ prying into our computer use, email, what we purchase, our jobs, what we watch, how we look when we watch(!), our spending, our gun purchases, and now a toy (that could be a tool) to spy on our children?
I wonder if the little brothers of girls receiving such a gift will nip this in the bud by deftly removing Barbie’s head, as he did with all the others?
Or is the microphone in her torso?
And is GI JOE next?
This time at a STATE level! By FEDERAL officials!
Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted found 44 cases of illegal aliens voting in Ohio and could find more but federal officials refuse to hand over crucial data.
Husted’s investigation used Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicle data to cross check voter rolls. However, for a match, the BMV record must be self-identified as a non-citizen.
It just gets better and better, doesn’t it?
h/t Brock Townsend
Found @ Theo Spark
I couldn’t have said it better!
President Obama promised us the the most transparent administration, ever.
Yeah, not so much.
I’ve been reading some news accounts proclaiming (at the time) that Obama would be so much better than President Bush at responding to Freedom of Information Act requests…
Then, I saw this:
White House office to delete its FOIA regulations
WASHINGTON — The White House is removing a federal regulation that subjects its Office of Administration to the Freedom of Information Act, making official a policy under Presidents Bush and Obama to reject requests for records to that office.
That pretty much states all you need, although it might behoove you to go to the link.
So Bush AND Obama – peas in a pod?
At least as far as openness is concerned.
Not that we believed Bush to be terrific, and Obama to be less than terrific…
What has happened to The Republic?
h/t Theo Spark, USA Today
(from the Ref Desk almanac…)
1947 President Truman signs Executive Order 9835 requiring all federal employees to have allegiance to the United States
I’m reasonably certain President Truman did so,
This guy, not so much…
Is EO 9825 still in force?
If so, Valerie Jarrett, Van Jones and many others have some ‘splainin’ to do!
THIS IS THE AMERICAN PARADOX.
How do we, as a Free, Constitutional Republic, with measures taken to preserve Free Speech and Dissent, ensure those charged with the custody of said Republic, continue to maintain her as such?
“Well, Doctor, what have we got—a Republic or a Monarchy?” – a lady bystander
“A Republic, if you can keep it.” – Benjamin Franklin
From Sebastian at Shall Not Be Questioned
, we find out about two Democrat Bills to ban all Centerfire Rifle Ammunition on the basis that the soft body armor worn by police officers which is designed to defeat Handgun ammunition can be defeated by Rifle Ammunition.Bills H.R. 2566
and H.R. 1358
, would redefine how bullets are described as
“Armor Piercing”. As most of us know, a ballistic bullet resistant vest, will not stop most rifle rounds. Nor was it intended or designed to.So once again, please contact your Representatives and Senators and tell them they need to oppose both of these Bills and any Bills like them.If you don’t know who your Representative or Senator is or don’t know how to contact them, please use the following links to search for them and their contact information.
Find Your Representative
Senators of the 114th Congress
Please make your voices heard in Congress. Don’t let them try to slip another zinger past to hurt our Rights.
They keep trying. And, either they are idiots who believe banning something will stop trade in it. (See The War on Drugs). OR, they are evil nazi/commie control freaks who know the criminals won’t obey the law (in fact, criminal enterprise make more money trading contraband), but the legal civilian firearm-owning populus who obey the law will be hampered by it.
You decide which.
h/t The Gun Blog Black List, Mark.GreyLocke
I remember as a child, the whole fam damly (as it was sometimes described) being shuffled into the station wagon, and off to the movies! Usually, a drive in theater. They were ubiquitous, and readily available in the Arizona weather. Much of the time, they were an extension of the TV-as-babysitter, translation: put the boy in from of a moving picture and he’ll go out like a light!
Then later in my youth, being dropped off at a Saturday afternoon matinee, with a friend or two, and funds for goodies – what a way to get them out of the house and from under foot. The only rule was call when the movie let out (translation: make certain you had a dime left from that fiver!)
Being a self-described child of TV, when gadget-addict friend Bob P. (one of the many Bobs) announced he had a videotape player/recorder, I knew something was beginning to change. This Magnavox machine took VHS tapes, but no standard had yet to be decided upon, and tapes made upon it wouldn’t play on later standardized VHS machines! It also had vacuum tubes as part of it’s construction, weighed a ton, and cost about $1000 (in 1975 dollars)!
Thus began the slow decline as technology continued to develop, and people began renting Beta and VHS tapes, (remember Laserdiscs?) then DIVX, then DVD, and now can see many movies/TV shows via the Internet and BlueRay.
And the audience figured out that while the kids used to hang out in the back of the Vista Cruiser in their jammies, and the adults dressed up to go to the theater, it was just more convenient for all to stay in the living room in their jammies. (Or boxer shorts, in the case of my Dad.)
And you didn’t have to trudge across a gravel-laden parking lot in the dark to a grimy snack bar restroom, either.
And while the drive ins have mostly faded away, now the indoor theaters are as well. Few want to pay $15+ each for a seat, plus another $20 for drinks and snacks, when they can watch Netflix or Amazon at home in their skivvies.
Another childhood dream of a secret agent meeting place in an nearly empty theater is going away.
And teenaged fantasies of making out (or more) in Dad’s station wagon now have to be redirected.
Declining Theater Attendance @ a 20 Year Low
(FTC – Magnavox, Amazon and Netflix have given me nothing!)
A professor at Granite State College and chair of the history department at the Derryfield School in Manchester, New Hampshire admitted to writing the Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts in order to end white privilege. According to the response heard on the video, Dr. David Pook shocked the audience at an event at New Hampshire Institute of Politics when he made the following statement:
The reason why I helped write the standards and the reason why I am here today is that as a white male in society I am given a lot of privilege that I didn’t earn[.]
More at the link.
What is is about self-loathing, whether personally (low self esteem) or culturally (Americans who hate America, Jews who hate Jews, White folks who hate White folks or Black folks who hate Black folks)?
Perhaps I would feel differently, had I been born a poor Black child, instead of a lower-middle-class White. I’m more likely to give a random Black stranger I see on the street the benefit of a doubt than myself – low self esteem, and all.
I give girls and women preference, because that is how I was raised. Sometime to my own determent.
But I don’t believe in cultural affirmative action to level the playing field! I worked hard to get to my (marginal) station in life, and expect the same of others.
Regardless of their race or gender.
And I certainly don’t want government nudging society to some further self-loathing standard for the good of all (some).
h/t Theo Spark
NOT the ubiquitous sci-fi movie classic from the 70’s, with Farah Fawcett. Sorry.
(Just to show I don’t just go after leftist weasels. I go after weasels from the right side of the aisle, as well ! – Guffaw)
How did Senate Republicans violate the Logan Act? Well they did that by being war mongers. But more specifically, when 47 members of Congress signed onto a letter that was sent to Iranian officials in an attempt to undermine the peace deal with Iran, they clearly violated the act — and also all committed felonies. According to Cornell University, the act reads:
“Any citizen of the United States, wherever he may be, who, without authority of the United States, directly or indirectly commences or carries on any correspondence or intercourse with any foreign government or any officer or agent thereof, with intent to influence the measures or conduct of any foreign government or of any officer or agent thereof, in relation to any disputes or controversies with the United States, or to defeat the measures of the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.”
You should go and read the whole essay. Republicans do just as many illegal acts as Democrats. It’s actually kind of surprising, with Democrats controling most of the media, that this isn’t being more trumpeted(!)
Of course, based on so many other actions, it does appear Democrats don’t know the law!
(This doesn’t mean I agree with most actions of the current administration, but even a broken clock is right twice in seven years! :-))
h/t Doc in Yuma
Or the Weekly World News!
I’m certainly no fan of the Southern Poverty Law Center. Under the guise of ‘helping the poor and disenfranchised’, they have continued to malign legitimate gun owners and owner’s rights (see The Bill of Rights) and to push a big government totalitarian nanny state, while conflating legitimate gun-totin’ folk with radical, bomb-throwing ‘ so-called militia’ types.
So, when I saw this expose’ of Morris Dees, the founder of the SPLC, I couldn’t resist:
Most young conservative activists see Mark Potok and Heidi Beirich as the face of the SPLC. That is because Morris Dees, the founder, has a sordid past that is dangerous for the organization to have him on any live show. Dees makes rare appearances at campuses. Even, then the Q&A session often get cancelled if their is any opposition in the crowd.
Dees has been denounced as a con artist by people all across the political spectrum. He has been denounced by major newspapers. He has been denounced by people of all races. He has been denounced on the pages of major left-wing websites like Daily Kos and Huffington Post.
Harper’s Weekly, a publication cherished by liberal reporters, even published an expose denouncing Morris Dees.
Most young activists don’t even know about Dees, because their attention is directly at the people Dees’ uses as a buffer.
Young activists should acquaint themselves with the infamous Morris Dees Divorce papers.
Read this expose from Weekly Standard.
Divorce papers? Seriously?
Yep, I’m right up there with Springer.
h/t Free North Carolina