Trump's war on leakers has neutered the intelligence community's whistleblower program, which diverts leakers

The Intelligence Community Inspector General office is the place where spies and spook contractors who discover wrongdoing are supposed to be able to confidentially report their suspicions and know that they'll be investigated and acted upon. Dan Meyer, who is in charge of liasing with whistleblowers is now prohibited from talking with whistleblowers, from briefing agencies or congress or send out the office's newsletter. He has been stripped of his deputy and staff. Read the rest

Corporations form coalition to ask a court to ban coalitions (of people the corporations have screwed over)

One of the major triumphs of Elizabeth Warren's Consumer Financial Protection Bureau was a rule that banned the finance industry from using binding arbitration clauses to prevent defrauded customers from joining in class action suits to sue crooked banks. Read the rest

Trump's cutback-crazed health secretary loves billing private jets to the US taxpayer

Obama's cabinet secretaries flew commercial or took the train, with a few, rare exceptions that were approved at the highest level, but Trump's aptly named Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price sure loves to charter private jets and bill them to the US government. Read the rest

America's dirtiest, biggest student lender neutralized by federal watchdog

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, founded by Elizabeth Warren prior to her career as a senator, has entered into an unprecedented settlement with National Collegiate Student Loan Trusts, the largest holder of student debt in the country. Read the rest

Bipartisan Congress blocks Jeff Sessions' plan to revive civil asset forfeiture

Civil asset forfeiture allows police departments to confiscate and keep property they claim results from criminal activity, without having to prove that any criminal activity took place -- this turned into a national scourge, until cops were stealing more from Americans than burglars, until the Obama administration shut down the DoJ's enabling program in 2015. Read the rest

Deposit "tips" that are actually fake money with Bible verses in the church collection plate

A recurring outrage theme on the internet is hard-working restaurant servers whose "tips" turn out to be fake US currency printed with Bible verses, bearing the reassurance that these are "more valuable than money." Read the rest

Monsanto's lawyers forgot to ask a court to suppress damning evidence about cancer and corrupt science

Monsanto is facing over 100 lawsuits in a Federal district court in San Francisco brought by people who attribute their non-Hodgkin's lymphoma to exposure to glyphosate in Monsanto's Roundup weed-killer, and as part of the discovery process, it submitted internal documents to the court that detailed shenanigans in the company's internal science and its dealings with regulators and the press. Read the rest

Norwegian Islamophobes mistake bus-seat-covers for burkhas, go bonkers

Members of the Norwegian Facebook group "Fedrelandet viktigst" ("Fatherland first") mistook a photo of an empty bus whose seats had been draped with black covers for a bus full of women in burkhas and went Brevik-bananas, decrying the rampant Islamification of Norway and generally being easily frightened, fragile Aryans. Read the rest

Malware sucks: crappy code makes it easy to hack hackers

Common Remote Access Trojan (RAT) tools -- which allow hackers to remotely control hijacked computers, from the cameras and mics to the hard-drive and keyboard -- are very badly written and it's easy to hijack computers running the "command and control" components that malicious hackers use to control RATted systems. Read the rest

Selling arms to alien arthropods is a tricky business

Good Business is a short science fiction film about a very dodgy arms deal indeed, with a sting in its metaphorical tail; the film was created by Ray Sullian, adapted from Simon Roy's comic of the same name. (via JWZ) Read the rest

Trollcakes: sleuthing bakers will hunt down your trolls, inscribe their hate in icing, and deliver edible words

Ever wish the anonymous jerks who comments on your online life would be made to eat their words? Wish no more, Trollcakes is here. Read the rest

Retracted! Wcry ransomware is reborn without its killswitch, starts spreading anew

Motherboard has retracted this story: "Correction: This piece was based on the premise that a new piece of WannaCry ransomware spread in the same manner as the one that was responsible for widespread attacks on Friday, and that it did not contain a so-called kill switch. However, after the publication of this article one of the researchers making this claim, Costin Raiu, director of global research and analysis team at Kaspersky Lab, realized that was not the case. The ransomware samples without the kill switch did not proflierate in the same manner, and so did not pose the same threat to the public. Motherboard regrets the error."

Yesterday, the world got a temporary respite from the virulent Wcry ransomware worm, which used a leaked NSA cyberweapon to spread itself to computers all over the world, shutting down hospitals, financial institutions, power companies, business, and private individuals' computers, demanding $300 to reactivate them. Read the rest

Billboards go up targeting lawmakers who voted to gut Internet privacy

Evan from Fight for the Future writes, "The Internet strikes back! Hundreds of people chipped in small amounts to crowdfund these billboards targeting U.S. lawmakers who voted to gut the FCC's Internet privacy rules and allow ISPs like Comcast and Verizon to collect and sell their customers' personal information and web browsing history without our consent. Check out photos of the billboards here. Read the rest

United's CEO just lost out on the Chairmanship of United's board

When United CEO Oscar Munoz lied about Dr David Dao, slandering the passenger that was beaten unconscious as a direct result of his employees enacting the policies he put in place, he was acting in the knowledge that he would shortly be elevated to the Chairmanship of United's board of directors. Read the rest

The latest NSA dump from the Shadow Brokers tells you how to break into banks

The mysterious tragicomic hacking group The Shadow Brokers continues to dump incredibly compromising cyberweapons and internal information looted from the NSA, accompanied by Borat-compliant gibberish that reads like someone trying to make you guess whether there's a false flag in play, and if so, who is waving it. Read the rest

Kentucky coal museum installs solar panels because conventional energy is too expensive

The Kentucky Coal Museum in Benham, KY, spends $2,100 a month on electricity; to save money, they're putting in 80 solar panels, which will save them $8,000/year. Read the rest

Uber threatens to leave Seattle if drivers can unionize; drivers rejoice

The City of Seattle voted to allow Uber drivers to form a union, and Uber says that if its court challenge to the rule is unsuccessful, it might leave Seattle. Read the rest

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