Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Internet of Things? Security Nightmare

Oh, yah, but it's so COOL to use these, right?

The Internet of Things (IoT) has connected everything from smoke alarms to fridges and cars, making life easier and safer – but it has also given hackers a new way to attack their victims, warns HP.
In a study of the ten most popular IoT devices (which it did not name in its report) HP found 250 potentially dangerous security vulnerabilities. 
The devices came from manufacturers of TVs, webcams, home thermostats, remote power outlets, sprinkler controllers, hubs for controlling multiple devices, door locks, home alarms, scales and garage door openers.
All of the devices included remote smartphone applications which were used to control them. 
It was found that 90 per cent of the devices collected personal information, 70 per cent transmitted that data on an unencrypted network and 60 per cent had insecure user interfaces. Eight out of ten failed to require a strong enough password.

Like, ya'know, that garage-door opener you can hit with your smartphone?  Or how about a nice hot stove burning whatever's on top of it?

And that doesn't count the NSA's nosiness, either.

HT:  Ticker

And Lois Lerner's a Bitch. So?

Who'd have ever guessed?

Newly released emails by Lois Lerner, the former IRS official at the center of the tea party targeting scandal, show “deep animus towards conservatives, which she refers to as ‘—holes,’” according to a House committee.  --WaTimes quoted at Gateway

Happy to join Lerner in calling a spade a spade.

Warren Buffett v. Electricity

It appears that Warren Buffett's BNSF railroad cannot meet its contractural obligations to deliver coal to at least one Wisconsin utility.  This means the utility may have to shut down its plant and purchase electricity on the open market.

That, of course, will cost its customers a lot of money.

What the hell is Warren's problem?  A little too much Obozo-worship?

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

V.A.: It's Always "More Money!!"

Yah, so the VA will get another $17 billion or so, $7Bn of which will go toward hiring doctors.

Here's a question:  what was VA spending money on before this?

Einstein's insanity proposition is in play here, folks. 

Monday, July 28, 2014

OK, George Will. We Can Do That

George Will makes one good point.

...“Well, I think Kirsten’s largely right,” Will responded. “I think we ought to say to these children, ‘Welcome to America. You’re going to go to school and get a job and become Americans. We have 3,141 counties in this country. That’d be 20 per county.”

“The idea that we can’t assimilate these 8-year-old criminals with their teddy bears is preposterous,” the conservative columnist went on...

Let's go further and make the cutoff at 13-year-olds.

But none older than that.  Zero.  Zip.  Nada.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Disney's War on Women

Finally!  After 50+ years, the feminazis have discovered the root of all sexism.

Disney.

...Disney cartoons and other G-rated children’s movies are full of “gendered sexuality,” subjecting women to the male “objectifying gaze,” as “heterosexuality is constructed through hetero-romantic love relationships as exceptional, powerful, magical, and transformative.”

These were the conclusions of Women’s Studies professors Karin Martin and Emily Kazyak in their 2009 research paper, “Hetero-Romantic Love and Heterosexiness in Children’s G-Rated Films.” The sociologists examined “all the G-rated films grossing $100 million dollars or more between 1990 and 2005″ and found that these movies convey what feminists call “heteronormativity”...

The Scourge of the Planet, owned by ABC, no less!!

HT:  The Real McCain

Demolishing the Republic

Jefferson and Madison were no fans of Hamilton, who seems to have been a linear ancestor of the Crony Capitalists of today.  It's worth noting that the Cronies are non-partisan; they'll polish the knobs of anyone in office because their god is money.

Anyhoo, their methodology was laid out in 1972 in this newspaper editorial.

1. It being necessary in order to effect the change, to get rid of constitutional shackles and popular prejudices, all possible means and occasions are to be used for both these purposes....

4. In drawing all bills, resolutions, and reports, keep constantly in view that the limitations in the Constitution are ultimately to be explained away. Precedents and phrases may thus be shuffled in, without being adverted to by candid or weak people, of which good use may afterward be made. 

5. As the novelty and bustle of inaugurating the government will for some time keep the public mind in a heedless and unsettled state, let the press during this period be busy in propagating the doctrines of monarchy and aristocracy. For this purpose it will be particular useful to confound a mobbish democracy with a representative republic, that by exhibiting all the turbulent examples and enormities of the former, an odium may be thrown on the character of the latter....

6. But the grand nostrum will be a public debt, provided enough of it can be got and it be medicated with the proper ingredients. If by good fortune a debt be ready at hand, the most is to be made of it. Stretch it and swell it to the utmost the items will bear. Allow as many extra claims as decency will permit. Assume all the debts of your neighbors - in a word, get as much debt as can be raked and scraped together, and when you have got all you can, "advertise" for more, and have the debt made as big as possible. This object being accomplished, the next will be to make it as perpetual as possible; and the next to that, to get it into as few hands as possible. The more effectually to bring this about, modify the debt, complicate it, divide it, subdivide it, subtract it, postpone it, let there be one-third of two-thirds, and two-thirds of one-third, and two-thirds of two-thirds; let there be 3 percents, and 4 percents, and 6 percents, and present 6 percents, and future 6 percents. To be brief, let the whole be such a mystery that a few only can understand it; and let all possible opportunities and informations fall in the way of these few to cinch their advantages over the many....

[8].... (4) A great debt will require great taxes; great taxes, many taxgatherers and other officers; and all officers are auxiliaries of power. (5) Heavy taxes may produce discontents; these may threaten resistance; and in proportion to this danger will be the pretense for a standing army to repel it. (6) A standing army, in its turn, will increase the moral force of the government by means of its appointments, and give it physical force by means of the sword, thus doubly forwarding the main object

9. The management of a great funded debt and a extensive system of taxes will afford a plea, not to be neglected, for establishment of a great incorporated bank. the use of such a machine is well understood. If the Constitution, according to its fair meaning, should not authorize it, so much the better. Push it through by a forced meaning and you will get in the bargain an admirable precedent for future misconstructions. 

There's more at the link.

Why yes, indeed!  Those old dead white guys actually understood human nature!

Who'da'thunk??

HT:  Cold Fury

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Ruling Class Member Descends to Our Level!

The Ruling Class tries living like regular citizens for a week.

Wailing and gnashing of teeth! 

Hell's bells!  Last night I popped a can of tuna into some leftover pasta, sprinkled it with lemon/pepper and grated Parmesan, munched it down cold.  In winter, same recipe, nuked for a minute.

The poor, poor, dear, Ruling Class member.  Oh, the agony!!

S.T.E.M. Storm of Lies

The Official Line of Silicon Valley--that the US does not produce enough Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math graduates--is in conflict with Economics 101. 

You remember Econ 101, don't you?  The supply/demand intersection, where the price rises when supply is short, given constant or increasing demand?

Yah, THAT part.

...Some research suggests that there may be an oversupply of STEM professionals. An Economic Policy Institute study last year found that the supply of STEM graduates exceeds the number hired each year by a ratio of nearly 2-to-1, depending on field of study. In engineering, colleges historically produce about 50% more graduates than are hired into engineering jobs, the study found.....

Oh.

..."The unemployment in STEM is low now, but wage growth in most STEM occupations has been pretty flat for many years and employment growth has only recently shown any bounce," said Lowell....

Let's put it this way:  the market doesn't lie. But Silicon Valley management--well, it DOES lie. 

Friday, July 25, 2014

Halbig

Yah, well, let's see if the Judicial branch maintains its legitimacy by ruling on the plain meaning of the text.

Here's the House's finding:

This joint staff report shows that IRS and Treasury arrived at the decision to extend premium subsidies to federal exchanges without a thorough or proper analysis. There is simply no evidence that IRS conducted an adequate analysis of this issue prior to the issuance of the
proposed rule. 
On three separate occasions, IRS and Treasury employees were unable to provide the Committees with detailed information about the factors they considered before determining
that premium subsidies should be allowed in federal exchanges
When the potential illegality of the rule was raised by members of the general public and Members of Congress after the publication of the proposed rule, the evidence suggests that
IRS and Treasury once again failed to conduct a careful review and simply reiterated their
original assertions
.
While prior to the proposed rule, IRS and Treasury’s failure to conduct an adequate review of whether the text of law and PPACA’s legislative history supported its interpretation was largely due to other pressing priorities with the 36B regulation
....those "priorites" being political, of course. 

IRS did not bother with either the history of the bill, nor its plain language.  What governed the IRS' decision (made by Chief Counsel) was Obozoites at HHS who understood that if the law was implemented AS WRITTEN, residents of 36 States would suffer huge increases in health-insurance premiums.  

And the (D) Party would not survive the elections of '12, '14, or '16--or perhaps ever.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

The "Recovery" Misses Big

While the MSM and its master, the Administration, bleats happy-talk, reality intervenes.

New Home Sales in June plunged to 406k vs 504k in May... (remember that 504k print was the catalyst for 'weather' is over and the market to surge 10%) Now that has soaked in, consider this is equal lowest sales print since September 2013 (and Dec 2012) and the biggest miss since July 2013.The last 3 months of exuberance have all been revised significantly lower (most especially May's appartently make-believe number). What is even more troubling in the "survey" vs "reality" world is this collapse in sales when NAHB Sentiment surged to near cycle highs. For context, this is a 5-standard-deviation miss from economists' expectations,...

Musta been really horrible weather in June.  (Now it's called "climate disruption.")  Looks more like "economic disruption" to me and the only constant in the last 6 years has been Obozo and the Perfumed Princes in Congress.

Hmmmm?

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Where's Obozo's Hashtag Army?

President Girly-Pants' State Department doesn't make mention of SOME war criminals.

With a mass exodus of Christians from Mosul in the face of threats, the Chaldean Catholic Patriarch Louis Raphael Sako said that these Islamic militants are worse than Genghis Khan.

The Islamists are warning Christians that they must essentially convert or die.




Not even a hashtag offensive against the Saudi-sponsored (and US-armed) holocaust perps?



Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Wisconsin Employers Obtain Freedom of Religion

Despite the Senate Republicans, Wisconsin will abide by Hobby Lobby.

The state of Wisconsin will no longer be enforcing a state law requiring employers to provide contraception coverage in insurance plans offered to employees. A spokesman with the Office of the Commissioner of Insurance told Media Trackers on Monday that because of the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. in June, state regulators are no longer requiring employers or insurance providers to abide by the state requirement.

...In 2013, AB 216 and SB 202 attempted to add a religious exemption to the statute. Assembly Republicans passed their version of the reform but the bill subsequently died in the GOP-controlled Senate....

Seems like many Senate Republicans need a remedial primary or two.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Got iPhone? Like Security? Fuggeddaboutit!

Charming.

Apple has endowed iPhones with undocumented functions that allow unauthorized people in privileged positions to wirelessly connect and harvest pictures, text messages, and other sensitive data without entering a password or PIN, a forensic scientist warned over the weekend.

...Zdziarski said the service that raises the most concern is known as com.apple.mobile.file_relay. It dishes out a staggering amount of data—including account data for e-mail, Twitter, iCloud, and other services, a full copy of the address book including deleted entries, the user cache folder, logs of geographic positions, and a complete dump of the user photo album—all without requiring a backup password to be entered. ...

By the way, when you "paired" your iPhone with your car, the data-thief who wants to can use the car as its mode-of-stealing.

HT:  Ticker