Trump "plans" to make Peter Thiel a supreme court judge


Billionaire trumpkin Peter Thiel's got a law degree and pays lawyers a lot of money to destroy his enemies, so who better to occupy the vacant spot on the Supreme Court of the United States?

Donald Trump has made it clear he will nominate Peter Thiel to the Supreme Court if he wins the presidency, Thiel has told friends, according to a source close to the PayPal co-founder.

Trump “deeply loves Peter Thiel,” and people in the real estate mogul’s inner circle are talking about Thiel as a Supreme Court nominee, a separate source close to Trump told The Huffington Post. That source, who has not spoken to Trump directly about Thiel being nominated to the Court, cautioned that Trump’s offers often fail to materialize in real life.

It’s not clear whether Trump has indeed offered to nominate Thiel ― only that Thiel has said Trump would nominate him and that Trump’s team has discussed Thiel as a possible nominee. Both sources requested anonymity, given that Trump and Thiel have each demonstrated a willingness to seek revenge against parties they feel have wronged them. In Thiel’s case, he secretly financed lawsuits against with the intention of destroying the publication. He succeeded, and his role in the assault was only revealed in the final stages.

Thiel got rich building PayPal and went on to more success as a venture capitalist.

A conservative who occasionally affects the hamfisted libertarianism of people nerdy enough to read one long book when they are a child (but not nerdy enough for it to have been Anarchy, State and Utopia), Thiel complained about women getting the vote, believes that democracy and freedom are incompatible, thinks Lord of the Rings is a parable about economic freedom as the source of human happiness, yet finds taxpayers' money an excellent lining for his own pockets. Read the rest

Interview with teen botmaster whose lawyerbots are saving people millions


Joshua Browder, the teenaged botmaster whose Do Not Pay bot is helping drivers save millions by challenging NYC and London parking tickets and assisting UK homeless people who are applying for benefits, sat down for a chat on the O'Reilly Bots Podcast (MP3). Read the rest

No prison time for teen who raped baby


There something about convicted child molester Kraigen Grooms, 19, that fits the pattern of judicial restraint, even sympathy, shown to young offenders such as Brock Turner and Austin James Wilkerson. Can't quite put my finger on it. Read the rest

Class action suit: smart sex toys spy on their owners and transmit their masturbation habits


An anonymous woman has filed a class action suit against Standard Innovation, a company that makes We-Vibe "smart" sex toys that record exactly how their owners masturbate and transmit detailed dossiers, along with personally identifying information, back to the company. Read the rest

The EU tried to craft a sane 21st century copyright and failed miserably

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The European Commission's "Copyright Modernisation" effort has wrapped up, and it's terrible. Read the rest

Leaked: damning Scott Walker dark money docs that judge ordered destroyed


Again and again, Wisconsin governor Scott Walker flouted election laws to raise millions from some of the richest executives and biggest corporations in America, illegally laundering the money through the nominally independent, nonprofit Wisconsin Club for Growth -- and now we have all the details, thanks to an enormous leak of documents that a Wisconsin judge ordered destroyed. Read the rest

The DoJ is using a boring procedure to secure the right to unleash malware on the internet


The upcoming Rule 41 modifications to US Criminal Justice procedure underway at the Department of Justice will let the FBI hack computers in secret, with impunity, using dangerous tools that are off-limits to independent scrutiny -- all without Congressional approval and all at a moment at which America needs its law-enforcement community to be strengthening the nation's computers, not hoarding and weaponizing defects that put us all at risk. Read the rest

Steven Levy profiles Carl Malamud, Boing Boing's favorite rogue archivist


Steven Levy, author of Hackers and one of the best tech writers in the field (previously), has profiled Carl Malamud (previously), the prolific, tireless freedom fighter who has risked everything to publish the world's laws on the internet, even those claimed to be owned by "nonprofit" standards organizations whose million-dollar execs say that you should have to pay to read the law. Read the rest

Why Facebook's "It's too hard" excuse for Vietnam war photo takedown is bullshit


On Friday, Facebook started deleting posts containing "The Terror of War," Nick Ut's photo depicting a young Vietnamese girl fleeing a napalm attack on her village; Facebook approach this photo with a scorched earth (ahem) policy, even deleting it when it was posted by the Prime Minister of Norway. Read the rest

European court rules that making a link can be copyright infringement


The EU Court of Justice's ruling in GS Media BV v. Sanoma held that any commercial site that linked to a document that infringed copyright is presumed to be a party to the infringement, meaning that if you have a Google ad on your personal page and you link to something that turns out to be incorrectly licensed, you are potentially on the hook for enormous monetary damages. Read the rest

Open licenses don't work for uncopyrightable subjects: 3D printing edition


Michael Weinberg (who has written seminal stories on 3D printing and copyright) writes, "We are seeing widespread adoption of copyright-based open licenses in 3D printing and open source hardware. This is great in that it shows that the culture of openness has really permeated the culture. It is not so great because a significant number of the things nominally licensed in these communities aren't actually protected by copyright." Read the rest

Warner Bros flags its own website as a piracy portal in copyright takedowns

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It turns out that asking a piece of software to decide which websites should be censored and which ones are legitimate has some problems, which I think comes as a surprise to all of us. Read the rest

Court tells cops that license plates from a weed-friendly state are not "suspicious"


The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals has stripped two Kansas Highway Patrol officers of immunity for their detention of a man with Colorado plates whom they believed to be suspicious because Colorado has legal recreational marijuana -- thus any car from Colorado was a potential marijuana smuggling vehicle. Read the rest

Peter Thiel & Y Combinator fund a "litigation financing" startup to make money off other peoples' lawsuits

Legalist is a startup founded by Thiel Fellow Eva Shang and Christian Haigh, backed by Y Combinator: it will use data-mining to identify people who have been legally wronged by deep-pocketed aggressors and offer to finance their litigation in return for a share of the winnings. Read the rest

Florida prosecutor who bumbled George Zimmerman trial is really good at putting children in adult prisons for life


Angela Corey is state attorney for Florida's 4th Circuit, where she's put children as young as 12 on trial as adults, facing life in prison -- in solitary, because children can't be mixed with adult populations -- without counseling, education, or any access to family. Read the rest

As America's temperatures soar, prisoners are dropping dead


Most states have no maximum temperature standards for their prisons: combine that with a succession of hottest-months-on-record and a prison system that provides less water than is medically recommended even when it's not hotter than blazes, and you've got a carceral state that is roasting prisoners alive. Read the rest

Artist who denied authenticity of painting wins in court


Artist Peter Doig, accused of damaging the value of a painting simply by denying that he was its creator, prevailed in court this week. U.S. District Judge Gary Feinerman found that there no evidence that Doig created the work, but plenty that it was by someone else: one Peter Doige, with an "e".

Doig maintained from the beginning that he was the victim of a opportunistic "scam" enabled by similarity of the two artists' names and the recent death of Doige. Meanwhile, the plaintiff claimed Doig was "embarrassed" by a juvenile work that happened to expose a youthful stint in prison [Doige, not Doig, was imprisoned.]

Doige's sister, Marilyn Doige Bovard, testified that the painting was her brother's work.

As Doig's work sells for millions of dollars, much was at stake; the case was watched closely by artists and dealers concerned about an outcome that made it dangerous to discuss their own work lest they be sued by hungry speculators.

Others were angered that the judge had let the case go to trial in the first place, costing Doig heavy sums to defend himself even after producing ample evidence the painting could not possibly be by him.

The case is unusual because disputes over the authenticity of a work of art normally arise long after an artist has died. When artists are alive, it is widely accepted that their word on whether a work is theirs or not is final. Mr Fletcher claimed Mr Doig had renounced the work to avoid admitting he had spent time in prison.

Read the rest

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