Following on this week's Snowden leak detailing how Canadian spy agency CSEC illegally intercepted free airport Wifi and used it to track Canadians as they moved around the country, Paul Calandra, parliamentary secretary to Prime Minister Stephen Harper, stood up in Parliament and issued a non-denial saying that the CBC had it all wrong, but not saying in what way.
The most shameful part of this was when Calandra used ad hominem to distract his audience from his government's criminal acts, slandering journalist Glenn Greenwald by calling him a "porn-spy," incorrectly stating that Greenwald had sold the leaked documents to the CBC, and then making a big deal out of the fact that Greenwald's bank account is in Brazil. The last part would be a bit mysterious, except for the fact that Greenwald lives in Brazil.
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Personhood, Lauren Zuniga's 2012 performance at the Urbana Poetry Slam, is a powerful piece about choice, social justice, reproductive rights, and rape [TW]. Set against the backdrop of Rick Santorum's remarks on rape (calling pregnancies arising from rape a "gift from God"), the performance tries to bridge the gap between Zuniga's life and beliefs and her conservative grandfather's staunch opposition to choice on abortion.
Lauren Zuniga's "Personhood"
(via Wil Wheaton)
Omaha police officer Bradley D Canterbury was fired after he beat up a suspect and then participated in a brutal, illegal retaliatory raid on the home of a citizen who'd video-recorded the incident. Canterbury was one of over 30 Omaha police officers who broke into a family home without a warrant intending to destroy mobile phone video evidence of his violent actions, and was one of six officers from that cohort who were fired for the beating.
Now he's got his job back.
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Jeffrey sez, "The nice responses to my essay on 'Hotel California', has emboldened me to send a follow up on the curious life in China of another American song from the 1970s. Namely, the one that finds John Denver waxing nostalgic about West Virginia."
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Congressman Michael Grimm (R-NY/Staten Island) felt a little tense after the State of the Union. After giving a terse statement to an NY1 reporter, he was asked about the ongoing issue of his campaign finance. He declined to discuss the matter and stormed off, then returned a moment later, apparently unaware that the camera was still rolling, and threatened to "throw [the reporter] off this fucking balcony." Grimm followed this with "you're not man enough, you're not man enough. I'll break you in half. Like a boy."
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Justin Hall sez, "My personal web site just turned 20 years old today! I posted a short film to celebrate."
Happy 20 - long time linking
Might Mike's Imagine/Jump mashup has a lot of precision in its execution, a great tempo/pitch match. I can't say as it's the catchiest tune I've yet heard, but I can really appreciate the execution.
Mighty Mike - Imagine a jump (John Lennon vs. Van Halen)
Here's more bad news from historic computing site Bletchley Park, where a new, slick museum is being put together with enormous corporate and state funding. Last month, it was the fact that McAfee had apparently banned any mention of Edward Snowden in a cybersecurity exhibit.
Now there's this heartrending BBC report on how volunteers who've given decades of service to Bletchley have been summarily dismissed because they don't fit in with the new plan. The museum of Churchill memoribilia that shared the Bletchley site has been evicted.
For people like me who've donated over the years, fundraised for it, and joined the Friends of Bletchley, this is really distressing news. I've always dreamt of Bletchley getting enough funding to do the site and its collection justice, but if it comes at the expense of decency and integrity, they may as well have left it as Churchill did -- abandoned and forgotten.
BBC News Bletchley Park s bitter dispute over its future
Patrick Boivin is a stop-motion animation genius who does insanely amazing and expressive things with cheap action figures. I could watch Einstein kicking Vader's ass for hours.
Patrick Boivins' channel
(Thanks, Fipi Lele!)
Timo writes, "Digital Science Concepts showcases our thinking on how technology might shape the laboratory of the future. These are products that are not currently under development but one day they might be commonplace in laboratories...who knows?
See how we imagine the lab of the future..."
In this video, the second in the Digital Science Concepts series, we take a look at how voice and gesture activated video augmented glasses might enhance the way we work at the bench. Such technology could allow scientists to view a protocol, check availability of reagents, book equipment, check the status of equipment in use, as well as checking email and video calling colleagues - all from your bench.
Digital Science Concepts: Protovision. Imagining the laboratory of the future [Laura Thomson/Digital Science]
In this video, Ukrainian riot police have stripped a protester naked in subzero conditions and are parading him in public before putting him in a police van. The protester is stoic in the face of humiliation.
Daniel, who wrote our feature on #euromaidan, says that it's getting worse there: "Tires burning, police started shooting to kill, body count was at 7
this morning. Hard to say, lots of people disappear. I'm wearing
Of the protester in the video, he says, "look at his statue - what a spirit."
Stay safe, Daniel.
Mike from Mother Jones writes, "Mother Jones' James West looks into the dark side of the network's turn toward wildlife reality TV, and uncovers some disturbing revelations about a hit show. It boils down to this, West writes: 'The raccoon incident is just one of numerous instances on 'Call of the Wildman' sets of alleged animal mistreatment and possible infringements of state and federal law, the result of what sources describe as cavalier and neglectful production practices. A seven-month Mother Jones investigation -- which drew on internal documents, interviews with eight people involved with the show's production, and government records -- reveals evidence of a culture that tolerated legally and ethically dubious activities, including: using an animal that had been drugged with sedatives in violation of federal rules; directing trappers to procure wild animals, which were then 'caught' again as part of a script; and wrongly filling out legal documents detailing the crew's wildlife activities for Kentucky officials.'"
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In the New Yorker, Tim Wu reviews The Internet's Own Boy, a documentary about the life and death of Aaron Swartz. Wu, the scholar and lawyer who coined the term "Net Neutrality," does a good job of framing Aaron's life in the context of his activism. The film has just premiered to good reviews at Sundance.
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A video of Toronto Mayor Rob "Laughable Bumblefuck" Ford drunk and bellowing obscenities in a jafaican accent has surfaced. Ford, a luminously white and privileged man who was born into millions in a quiet suburb of Toronto, affects an embarrassing West Indian accent as he thunders to a captive audience at a west-end steak joint.
The subject of his rant was Toronto police chief Bill Blair, who instigated the long-running investigation into Ford's association with drug-dealers and gangsters, and which surfaced evidence that the mayor had smoked crack, driven drunk, and lied to the public and to council. In the video, Ford calls Blair "Cocksucking fucking Chief Blair."
He also says "bumbaclot." A lot.
When the scandal broke, Ford admitted to his drug use and swore he'd gone sober. But he told reporters who questioned him about this video that he was drunk, and that the events depicted in it were his "my personal life, with my personal friends, that's up to me. This really has nothing to do with you guys."
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