As technology continues to fragment communication and the spread of ideas, people will continue to pursue their own individual interests with the effect of further cultural divergence. We are heading toward a world where we can build our own echo chambers and shut off anything we find offensive or unpleasant. In other words, if you think that cultural fragmentation is bad now — or that the Trump supporters are suggesting extreme measures in order to reimpose a degree of cultural hegemony - you ain’t seen nothing yet. The decentralization of warfare through the adptation of drone technology and things like 3-D printed guns and bullets means that many skirmishes will likely be fought over this stuff again.
Forget McDonalds and minimum wage blowback, the U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC) is set to send a convoy of vehicles along a stretch of Interstate 69 in Michigan as part of an initial testing of driverless military vehicle equipment on public roadways. The autonomous technology, designed to "save the lives of soldiers serving overseas," is the latest step for the army as it progresses towards its goal of unmanned Abrams tanks and helicopters.
In light of the continued push by state AGs to go after Exxon on climate change, five senators have sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch demanding that in two weeks, the Department of Justice "immediately cease its ongoing use of law enforcement resources to stifle private debate on one of the most controversial public issues of our time - climate change." Or, said otherwise, to end the government witch hunt against political opponents of president Obama's energy agenda.
After months of haggling, Germany's coalition government has agreed on a new "Integration Law" aimed at regulating the rights and responsibilities of asylum seekers in Germany. The main focus of the law is to encourage refugees to learn enough German to be able to find a job and help pay for their living expenses. Chancellor Angela Merkel has hailed the new law as a "milestone," but critics counter that the new law is a largely symbolic measure directed at reassuring German voters and blunting the rise of the anti-immigration Alternative for Germany party, accusing Merkel of "no longer being concerned about the interests of Germans and the future of their nation, the protection of their living environment and their cultural identity."
"...if I win believe me we're gonna start opening up the water so that you can have your farmers survive, so that your job market will get better..."
The Fed’s crusade to pump-up inflation toward its 2.00% target by hammering-down interest rates to the so-called zero bound is economically lethal. The former destroys the purchasing power of main street wages while the latter strip mines capital from business and channels it into Wall Street financial engineering and the inflation of stock prices.
With the S&P closing at 2,099 on Friday, here - courtesy of Citi - is a reminder of the recent monthly highs in the S&P 500, all of which have managed to rise above 2,100 only to slide right back down again. There is one more trading day in May, or as CitiFX' Brent Donnelly puts it, "here we go again."
When NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden first exposed the world to just how easily the government could compromise their technology and spy on them, many immediately sought ways to secure their data and protect their gadgets. But, as Wired.com reports, Snowden is here to help. "'Going Black' is a pretty big ask," he tells VICE's Shane Smith, but not impossible, as Snowden shows how to "make sure your phone works for you... instead of working for someone else."
"'Hoffnung', the German word for ‘hope’, is my dad’s favorite word because it has carried him through many tribulations. Hope sustained him when the Nazis ripped him from his home. Hope lifted his spirits as a prisoner of war. Hope kept him alive when the Russians released him to the British, and he worked in a coal mine under terrible conditions near Scotland for a few years to pay off his “debt”. Hope is what brought him and his family to America for a better life. I just wonder if he would have left Austria if he knew that 57 years later his very own son would have no hope whatsoever for the America he was about to call home. So sorry, that’s just the way I feel right now, and for the past six months or so. Hoffnung ist tot."
If the ‘deep state’ is really delusional enough to trigger a war with Russia, in Europe or elsewhere, the narcissistic and hedonistic West, drunk on its own propaganda and hubris, will discover a level of violence and warfare it cannot even imagine and if that only affected those responsible for these reckless and suicidal policies it would be great. But the problem is, of course, that many millions of us, simple, regular people, will suffer and die as a consequence of our collective failure to prevent that outcome.
“This bill takes a hatchet to important protections for Americans’ liberty,” Wyden said following the vote. “This bill would mean more government surveillance of Americans, less due process and less independent oversight of U.S. intelligence agencies. Worse, neither the intelligence agencies, nor the bill’s sponsors have shown any evidence that these changes would do anything to make Americans more secure. I plan to work with colleagues in both chambers to reverse these dangerous provisions.”
“Secretary Clinton should have surrendered all emails dealing with Department business before leaving government service, and because she did not do so, she did not comply with the Department’s policies that were implemented in accordance with the Federal Records Act,” the audit report said. Bottom line: Mrs. Clinton violated the Federal Records Act. However, what is probably the most troubling about all of this is that, despite these blatant violations, there will be absolutely no legal repercussions for Mrs. Clinton for this offense. She’s off the hook! Why aren’t all the pundits screaming about that?
Who is to blame for Trump and Sanders?
Late Thursday evening the Justice Department, under US attorney general Loretta Lynch, first appointed in 1999 by none other than Bill Clinton, filed a court motion opposing the Clinton deposition request from conservative legal watchdog Judicial Watch, claiming that the organization was trying to dramatically expand the scope of the lawsuit.
In a shocking turn of events, a law passed on May 22 by Iceland's parliament is offering the foreign holders of about $2.3 billion worth of krona-denominated bonds a choice of either selling out in June at a below-market exchange rate, or have the money they receive upon maturity be impounded indefinitely in low interest bank accounts. In other words, Iceland is trying to kick out foreign investors.