Archive for November, 2008

Black Swans and Monetary Monocultures

Sunday, November 30th, 2008 by Irdial 1DnwFLXczVZV8kLJbMYoheUrpqHesjxrSi

Trawling through links on a Sunday afternoon, we see that one of my favorite mathematicians

Disclose.tvThe REAL Maverick: Present Economy worse than Depr Video

confirms the ‘Monetary Monoculture Danger’ BLOGDIAL post, and introduces us to a new smart guy, Nassim Nicholas Taleb:

“My major hobby is teasing people who take themselves & the quality of their knowledge too seriously & those who don’t have the courage to sometimes say: I don’t know….” (You may not be able to change the world but can at least get some entertainment & make a living out of the epistemic arrogance of the human race).

I like it.

He wrote a book called ‘Black Swans’, and on his page there is this line:

The Black Swan: Quotes & Warnings that the Imbeciles Chose to Ignore

I REALLY like it.

Nassim Nicholas Taleb: The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable (April 2007)

For the last 12 years, I have been telling anyone who would listen to me that we are taking huge risks and massive exposure to rare events. I isolated some areas in which people make bogus claims –epistemologically unsound. The Black Swan is a philosophy book (epistemology, philosophy of history & philosophy of science), but I used banks as a particularly worrisome case of epistemic arrogance –and the use of “science” to measure the risk of rare events, making society dependent on very spurious measurements. To me a banking crisis –worse than what we have ever seen — was unavoidable and NOT A BLACK SWAN, just as a drunk and incompetent pilot would eventually crash the plane. And I kept receiving insults for 12 years!

Regular readers of BLOGDIAL will know why this man and his work has such a strong appeal to us.

From what little we can glean from an hour of digging around, this man is a real scientist i.e. a scientist that is outside of the Science Cult.

His Black Swan Theory dovetails perfectly with what we and many other people have been saying about UFOs for decades. All you need is a single event to prove that everything you believe is wrong; in this case, all you need is a single instance of a UFO being of ET origin to demonstrate that there is Extraterrestrial Life and that some of it is intelligent and some of it can get here from wherever it is they come from. Such an even would also trash the mistaken idea that the distances are too far, and every other false piece of reasoning to exclude the possibility that Alien scientists and explorers coming here.

No matter what you think, no matter what you want to believe, facts are either true or they are not and the rules of evidence do not change simply because you do not like what they imply. Putting people out of work for their entire lives does not make something you find unthinkable not true.

But I digress.

We can now add Benoit Mandelbrot and Nassim Nicholas Taleb to the list of people who have been warning about an impending financial super crash, and Dr Mandelbrot brings a particularly interesting point of view to the table=, because in the discipline that he pioneered we can find a solution to the booms and busts that are created by interfereing in markets, and I wrote of it in my Monoculture post.

If it is true that economic systems are ‘far more complicated than the weather’ AND (for the sake of argument) we want to stop polluting to prevent an environmental disaster from happening, then governments should also get out of the way of how economies spontaneously and naturally order themselves.

On the surface, governments implicitly agree that market forces exist and that you can precisely alter their behavior by chanting the rates of taxes; Gordon Brown’s government is lowering VAT to 15.5% from 17.5% to encourage spending. This is an admission that indeed, human beings are rational, and that the market reacts to prices rationally. If we extrapolate this move and eliminate all government from the equation, that is, all taxes, would not the economy experience a boom big enough to correct the problem? If this is the case, then why not reduce VAT to 0% if this is the greatest crisis since the great depression? Why keep any VAT at all?

Then we read that there is a secret plan to increase VAT to 18.5% after this ‘VAT holiday’ is over. Wait a minute, if more buying and selling is a good thing, and lowering VAT makes this happen, raising VAT will cause buying and selling to slow down, which is exactly what ‘we do not want’.

Looking at this even in these most simple of terms, and then taking into account the true nature of the scale and complexity of billions of people interacting on the smallest of scales, its clear that this government and in fact no government could possibly understand and regulate any economy for any purpose, and they demonstrate the absolute pinnacle of conceit by thinking that they actually can control the economy. This is quite apart from the moral aspects of their ‘running’ the economy by having a monopoly on initiating force.

We are faced with two choices when we observe government interfering with markets.

The first, is that they do not know what they are doing; they are incompetent and are recklessly tampering with something that they do not understand, and that this crisis is a direct result of this incompetence.

The second, they DO know what they are doing, and they have in their possession a complete scientific model that explains every part of the economy, and that they have deliberately created this crash as a means to some end.

No government, not even that of Gordon Brown would claim that they have a complete, mathematical model of the economy that they work from and use to make decisions. This means that they cannot possibly know what they are doing or what the effects of their decisions will be in the future.

Both of these cases mean that no government should be involved in any aspect of any economy, since it is inevitable that they will do harm and not good either by incompetence or by malice. This is, once again, completely separate from their lack of a right to interfere in the private transactions of people who do no harm to others while transacting.

In order for any reasonable man to accept that these evil entities should have any say in the economy, just for the sake of argument, they would have to demonstrate that a government was competent, but this presents problems by itself; what metrics should be used, who is to say what a success is or is not etc etc. The fact of the matter is that there is no man alive and no group of men that has either the tools or the experience or the knowledge of what is happening right now to be able to steer the behemoth that is an economy of even a small country.

Like I said in my other post, if people are left to their own devices, we will get stability; long term stability where everyone knows, more or less, what is going to happen in the long term future in a narrow field. What is for certain is that once the government, whether it is incompetent or evil, is taken out of the equation if there are future crashes we will be able to respond to them in ways that ameliorate the situation much more rapidly. By nature also, since we would not be in a monetary monoculture, these crashes would be highly localized and not international or even continental.

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MMR: More Measles Rubbish

Friday, November 28th, 2008 by Strep Throat

Jab offered over measles outbreak

More than 10,000 youngsters across Cheshire are being offered the MMR vaccine in an attempt to contain an outbreak of measles.

Health officials said there had been 62 reported cases of the illness mainly around Crewe, Sandbach and Middlewich.

The Health Protection Agency (HPA) said there had been 106 cases in the county since January.

Cheshire has the highest rate of reported measles cases in the UK outside of London in 2008.

Professor David Salisbury said: “This is the legacy. This is the milestone [sic] we carry because a decade ago we didn’t vaccinate our children because of fear over the MMR jab.”

More than 50% of cases have occurred in children of nursery and primary school age, said a HPA spokesman.

This is the milestone [sic] we carry because a decade ago we didn’t vaccinate our children because of fear over the MMR jab.

No.

No. This is the consequence of government policy.  Consider: you are HMG, an altruistic body whose only purpose is to serve the public interest.  You know that, of measles, mumps and rubella, only measles is potentially a serious public health concern.  However, in a misguided moment you have (1) withdrawn licences to produce single vaccines against these diseases and (2) given a monopoly to a triple-jab, MMR, despite this seeming to go against your stated aim of allowing patient choice.   For whatever reason, confidence in MMR decreases and the incidence of measles increases. Since you are an altruistic body whose only purpose is to serve the public interest, you wish to protect the nations children against measles.

Do you:

(a) rapidly re-introduce single vaccines for those children whose parents who prefer them, leading to increased uptake, increased protection and removing any question of dereliction of duty, or…

(b) blame the media for anti-MMR hysteria, blame parents for being paranoid and attempt to induce a compulsion to vaccinate by MMR through fear-mongering, while refusing to change policy on single vaccines and sneering ‘told you so’ as children are hospitalised by measles.

Listen to Prof David Salisbury in this article:

Measles cases reach 13-year high

Hear him blame parents for not taking up MMR. Hear him acknowledge he has been worrying about a measles epidemic for “a considerable period of time”.

But what has he done? Nothing. He is useless. Worse than useless, he is perpetuating the problem. He will not propose single vaccines, but repeatedly says it is up to parents to give children MMR, or else it’s their fault when measles increases. He is no longer acting as a physician, but as a political puppet acting in the interests of… well, who knows? BigPharma? HMG? Certainly not you, the people, who pay his wages.

Some information on single vaccines is here.

In a sneaky move, BBQ have been utilised to further fear-moger against single vaccines and for MMR.

Single vaccine ‘safety’ warnings

So, after several paragraphs suggesting your child may die due to anaphylaxis if you give it single vaccines and not the MMR we get:

Study leader Dr Mich Lajeunesse, a consultant in paediatric allergy in Southampton, said: “It is so unusual that if you saw one case of anaphylaxis to vaccines you would be surprised.

We can’t think of any reason why it would be higher for single vaccines and it’s probably an anomaly.

The data are extrapolated from estimates because single vaccinations are essentially unregulated because… government policy does not allow your GP to administer them!!!

So HMG have not only watched as your risk of measles increased and refuse to do anything about it, but may also be increasing your risk of side effects from single vaccines because these vaccines can now only be given by unmonitored clinics.

What a farce!

Vaclav Klaus to Become President of European Union

Tuesday, November 25th, 2008 by Irdial 1DnwFLXczVZV8kLJbMYoheUrpqHesjxrSi

Just when it looked like statism was in an unchallenged political trajectory in the U.S. and Europe, the classical liberal President of the Czech Republic, Dr. Vaclav Klaus, stands to become the next President of the European Union, the world’s biggest trading bloc. Needless to say, those who F. A. Hayek dubbed “the socialists of all parties” (be they red, brown, or green) are none too pleased. As the New York Times reports:

Now the Czech Republic is about to assume the rotating presidency of the European Union and there is palpable fear that Mr. Klaus will embarrass the world’s biggest trading bloc and complicate its efforts to address the economic crisis and expand its powers. His role in the Czech Republic is largely ceremonial, but he remains a powerful force here, has devotees throughout Europe and delights in basking in the spotlight.

“Oh God, Vaclav Klaus will come next,” read a recent headline in the Austrian daily Die Presse, in an article anticipating the havoc he could wreak in a union of 470 million people already divided over its future direction.

A professional economist and devotee of the work of Hayek, Milton Friedman, James Buchanan, and other free market thinkers, Dr. Klaus is well-known for challenging the extremely harmful folly of central government planning and interventionism. For example, he has called the current climate change hysteria “a dangerous myth” in misguiding western officials to adopt pointless and anti-social measures, he has derided the bailouts of European banks as “irresponsible protectionism,” and when it comes to the European Union (EU), he is a vocal opponent of the Lisbon Treaty and has called for nothing less than for the EU itself to be “scrapped.” And while other western leaders rattle their swords at Russia, Dr. Klaus has forged closer ties for expanded trade and other peaceful relations.

His accomplishments in the former Czechoslovakia are impressive, as the Times notes:

As a former finance minister and prime minister, he is credited with presiding over the peaceful 1993 split of Czechoslovakia into two states and helping to transform the Czech Republic into one of the former Soviet bloc’s most successful economies.

For the Independent Institute, Dr. Klaus has served as Honorary Co-Chairman and a featured speaker at our 1998 Dinner to Honor Sir John Marks Templeton (listen here), and Honorary Co-Chair of our recent event, A Gala for Liberty, at which we honored entrepreneur William K. Bowes, Jr., actor/director Andy Garcia, and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Desmond Tutu.

[...]

http://www.independent.org/blog/?p=581

I simply cannot believe it.

My favorite Czech is going to get a chance to make real trouble!

We have already written about this particular individual before.

And of course, the timing could not be better. At the very least, he will be able to bring reality to the table in the form of Austrian Economics and plain common sense.

The first legitimate and moral bank in an age

Monday, November 24th, 2008 by Irdial 1DnwFLXczVZV8kLJbMYoheUrpqHesjxrSi

In the age of ‘teh inernetz’ it is always a safe bet that someone, somewhere, is thinking the same thing that you are thinking.

It seems that the Lakota Sioux have taken the initiative and are starting a clean, no fractional reserve, no Federal Reserve Note bank. The word about this is spreading like wildfire; this is because everyone is slowly coming to the conclusion that the only real money is Gold, Silver and other precious metals, and that Fractional Reserve Banking is fundamentally immoral and a form of legalize counterfeiting and that the best sort of bank for your savings would be one that only held gold that you deposited.

Consent of the Governed does the hard work:

Remember my blogpost about the Liberty Dollar? Those are still available – but now the People of Lakota are launching a Private Bank for Only Silver and Gold Currencies; and you can convert your US Dollars for their Gold and Silver. You don’t even have to be an honorary Sioux to participate.

In a stunning development, the Free & Independent People of Lakota announced today the introduction of the world’s first non-reserve, non-fractional bank that accepts only silver and gold currencies for deposit.

“Today is a great day for us, a day that we begin to exercise our rights as a sovereign people with strength and pride,” comments Canupa Gluha Mani, Tetuwan Council Judicial Member of the Cante Tenza “Strong Heart” Warrior Society. Mani’s 2500 member warrior society has contracted to provide private security services for the Free Lakota Bank.

“We invite people of any creed, faith or heritage to unite in an effort to reclaim control of wealth. It is our hope that other tribal nations and American citizens recognize the importance of silver and gold as currency and decide to mirror our system of honest trade.” Mani, also known as Duane Martin Sr, is a member of the delegation that declared Lakota independence on December 17th, 2007.The Free Lakota Bank issues an American Open Currency Standard Approved currency, making it readily accepted for trade by over 10,000 merchants and businesses across the continent; this is similar to the Liberty Dollar.

The announcement about this also mentioned that:

The launch of the Free Lakota Bank is also an incredible victory for StrikeForce Technologies, the access control experts providing depositor Out-of-Band Authentication. As the Free Lakota Bank does not require a name, photo identification or social security number to transact, StrikeForce’s technology met the challenge of limiting fraud without requiring controversial biometric technology.

They are using some security software for deposits and withdrawals, and since people have become used to doing banking online even with institutions that don’t have physical “branches” like ING, this is nothing new.

It looks like the Native Americans are flexing their position of sovereignty to create gold and silver backed currency – I sure wish the United States would do the same. Instead the US is just printing up gobs of fiat money that shows signs of eventual collapse. I’ll bet the Lakota’s website and phones will be very busy.

The People of Lakota invite depositors to establish accounts and invest in the Free Lakota Bank’s General Investment Fund, the fund it uses to develop profitable free-market enterprise inside Lakota territory. Mani comments that the nation despises donations and charity, and instead insists instead on “earning our wealth by creating value for those that place their faith and trust in our system.”

Let’s hope that the Feds don’t raid them and steal all their Gold and Silver like they did to the Liberty Dollar folks.

“Money is the barometer of a society’s virtue. When you see that trading is done, not by consent, but by compulsion…when you see that in order to produce, you need to obtain permission from men who produce nothing…when you see your laws don’t protect you against them, but protect them against you…when you see corruption being rewarded and honesty becoming a self-sacrifice…you may know that your society is doomed.” – Ayn Rand – “Atlas Shrugged”

[...]

Consent Of The Governed

If the Lakota Sioux are indeed a sovereign people, then the Feds cannot go there and raid this bank. What they might do however, is order a Gold and Silver confiscation, and make it illegal for you to take your money off of Lakota Sioux land. We shall see.

I do not think that this will be the first bank of this kind. The more people wake up, the greater the demand will be for a no Fractional Reserve bank that keeps your savings in something other than Federal Reserve Notes.

I have to read their privacy page. If they keep your affairs 100% private no matter what, then they have ‘the total package’.

Marijuana plantations for Eindhoven

Monday, November 24th, 2008 by Irdial 1DnwFLXczVZV8kLJbMYoheUrpqHesjxrSi

The Dutch city of Eindhoven has caused a stir with a plan to set up a cannabis plantation to supply marijuana to its coffee shops. The move was announced at a “weed summit”, when dozens of Dutch mayors urged the government to back the pilot project in an effort to clamp down on the criminals who supply the drug.

The Netherlands, famed for having one of Europe’s most tolerant policies on soft drugs, allows for the possession of less than 5g of marijuana and its sale in coffee shops, but bans the cultivation and supply of the drug to these shops. The majority of Dutch mayors say this legal “back door” has spawned an illicit industry worth €2bn (£1.7bn) a year.

“It’s time that we experimented with a system of regulated plantations so we can have strict guidelines and controls on the quality and price,” Rob de Gijzel, the Mayor of Eindhoven, told the Dutch newspaper Volkskrant. “Authorities must get a grip on the supply of drugs to coffee shops.”

There are also concerns about the increasing strength of unregulated cannabis, with the content of tetrahydrocannabinol, the active chemical ingredient, doubling in recent years.

The weed summit was called to thrash out a revamp of drugs policy after the provincial cities Roosendaal and Bergen op Zoom announced plans to shut all their coffee shops in the next two years to combat drugs tourism and criminal activity. They complain that the 1.3 million French and Belgians who come every year for a puff of weed or dash of hash are often badly behaved. Worse still, they are targeted by “drugs runners” who lure them away from legal outlets to back-door suppliers that offer harder, illegal drugs.

Han Polman, the Mayor of Bergen op Zoom, said: “We are in favour of the Eindhoven experiment but we don’t see it happening quickly. That’s why we are going ahead with our shutdown.”

The Justice Minister Ernst Hirsch Ballin, of the conservative Christian Democratic Appeal party, has applauded these “courageous” efforts to wipe out coffee shops.

The capital, Amsterdam, was in shock over the weekend after news that one in five of its coffee shops would be forced to close under a new law. The city council said 43 of 228 sites must close by the end of 2011 because they are within 250m of a school. This includes the famous Bulldog coffee shop, a tourist magnet housed in a former police headquarters on the Leidseplein. Three Canadian visitors were reeling from the news. One said: “We come here twice a year, we fly thousands of miles, spend probably €4,000 while we are here. It’s the place to be!”

The headmistress of a nearby school, Margriet Bosman, was equally unimpressed by the new measure: “This is just for show. Children will get their drugs if they want to anyway, and closing the shops, which are quite regulated, is not a very good solution.”

Amsterdam’s mayor, Job Cohen, is also in favour of permitting the sale of soft drugs. “There should be a system… in which it is clear where soft drugs come from,” he said. Many Dutch also want the tolerant approach to remain in place, with a newspaper poll this week showing 80 per cent of Dutch opposing coffee shop closures.

Experts agree that a ban is not the answer. “A ban is even more dangerous than the grass itself because consumers will turn to illegal circuits and criminality will explode,” said Tim Boekhout, a criminologist.

[...]

The Independent

The only thing wrong with this plan is that the state is going to be the one setting up the plantation. They should completely legalize the growing and selling of marijuana, so that anyone can grow it anywhere and anyone can sell it….just like tomatoes.

It is completely insane and absurd that you are allowed to posses marijuana, but not allowed to grow it or sell it.

When people say, “the law is an ass”, this is what they are talking about.

There are no irrational regulations on the plantation of other crops for eating, and so there should be no irrational regulation on the growing of marijuana. If there are irrational regulations, i.e. what strains you cannot grow, someone, some ‘criminal’ is going to grow those strains simply because she should not. In any case, the crime routing around the law argument is irrelevant; no one has the right to stop you from growing whatever you want. Period. (GM being the exception, since the GM pollen can contaminate other people’s crops….small digression).

Words about the ‘increasing strength of unregulated cannabis’ come directly from the prohibitionist position, and are totally wrong. The strength or weakness of what you smoke should not be regulated by anyone, except you.

As for the Belgians and French who come to get a taste of liberty, that is a problem for the French and the Belgians to sort out. If their countries were operating correctly, there would be no reason to come to the Netherlands to smoke a plant and its extracts.

This nonsense about coffee shops being near schools is, as the teacher says, “just for show”. I’m sure no one is buying it there…what amazes me is that people are so stupid as to think that such a law would be taken seriously in the first place, or that it would in any way ‘work’ whatever they think ‘working’ is in this case.

Job Cohen is wrong to say there should be a system to show where ‘drugs’ come from.

Take a look at bread making:

when people are left to get on with their stuff in what ever way they want, they set their own standards, make what people want and everyone is catered for.

Artisan Bread Original makes a wide variety of high quality breads. No one told them how to do it, what the quality should be or anything else. It sells on its own merits and people buy it and are satisfied.

The same goes for marijuana. Growers will package it and categorize it themselves and the ones who know how best to do this will sell the most, with every other seller finding their own place in the market by virtue of people selecting them or not.

Finally, the argument about what is or is not in marijuana is simply nonsense. Cigarettes are full of toxic chemicals (599 to be exact) to aid the rate of burning and other qualities that the manufacturer is not required to list on the box:

The list of 599 additives approved by the US Government for use in the manufacture of cigarettes is something every smoker should see. Submitted by the five major American cigarette companies to the Dept. of Health and Human Services in April of 1994, this list of ingredients had long been kept a secret.

Tobacco companies reporting this information were:

  • American Tobacco Company
  • Brown and Williamson
  • Liggett Group, Inc.
  • Philip Morris Inc.
  • R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company

While these ingredients are approved as additives for foods, they were not tested by burning them, and it is the burning of many of these substances which changes their properties, often for the worse.

[...]

Marijuana does not currently have any of these artificial additives…but I can assure you that if the state gets involved in the marijuana trade, those deadly chemicals and others will be added.

Holyrood rejects identity cards

Thursday, November 20th, 2008 by Irdial 1DnwFLXczVZV8kLJbMYoheUrpqHesjxrSi

Before you read this post, press play on this:

The Scottish Parliament has voted against the UK Government’s plans to introduce ID cards.

MSPs backed a Scottish Government motion stating the scheme would not increase security or deter crime, while raising concerns about civil liberties.

Scots Community Safety Minister Fergus Ewing said the estimated £5bn needed for ID cards should be spent elsewhere.

But Labour declined to back the motion, saying parliament should focus on issues which were devolved to Scotland.

The first identity cards will be issued to foreign nationals from next week, while young people will be asked to sign up from 2010 before their expected general introduction from 2012.

Mr Ewing told parliament ID cards were a “colossal waste of money”, and that the UK Government could not be trusted to keep the data safe.

“This scheme won’t achieve its primary stated objective of making people safer nor reducing the terrorist threat,” he said.

“We do believe that it poses an unacceptable threat to citizens’ privacy and civil liberties.”

Liberal Democrat MSP Robert Brown said he was uneasy at the decision to issue cards to foreign nationals.

He said: “It goes under the rather unpleasant title of identity cards for foreign nationals, with all the nasty implied innuendo of the recipients being aliens, other people from far-off countries that we know nothing about and probably terrorists anyway.”

Tory Bill Aitken said governments had every justification to take action on improving security, but added: “Where there have been terrible terrorist outrages in the past, in countries where identity cards are compulsory, they have made not one whit of difference.”

Pointing out Holyrood had no jurisdiction on ID cards, Labour’s Richard Baker said there would be no obligation on people to carry ID cards.

He said the UK Government was bringing forward a series of measures to enhance national security and public safety.

He added: “ID cards are a part of that.

“There’s nothing extreme or unusual in the introduction of ID cards and the kind of data which will be on them.”

The government motion was passed by 69 votes to zero, with 38 abstentions.

[...]

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/7736588.stm

Amen.

Don’t be too quick to laugh at the BNP’s database leak

Wednesday, November 19th, 2008 by Irdial 1DnwFLXczVZV8kLJbMYoheUrpqHesjxrSi

The entire membership list of the BNP has been released by a disgruntled BNP member.

People all over the internets are laughing their heads off as they read about the teachers, lawyers and others who will now face the sack and lots of trouble for being a member of the BNP.

This is an example of the brainless bile being shot out:

this is so good!
18.11.2008 15:14

Hi.

This link has some info :-

https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=32095749&postID=300681785381908982

Hopefully gangs of illegal immigrants will rape their families………..
interzoneman

BLOGDIAL and its readers are not easily distracted by propaganda however. We think, and think ahead.

This BNP database release is a perfect example of why you should NEVER collect and keep sensitive lists of personal details on a database. Let’s do a little substitution shall we?

Replace the phrase ‘BNP Database’ with the word ‘ContactPoint’.

It’s not so funny now is it?

This database leak of 12,802 names, addresses, email addresses and occupations is NOTHING compared to the size and scale of ContactPoint; and bear in mind that the ease with which ContactPoint could be released onto the internet is exactly the same for both the BNP list and ContactPoint.

The BNP database was accessible to only a hand full of people and it contained a small number of people. ContactPoint contains the names, addresses, telephone numbers and parental details of ELEVEN MILLION CHILDREN and it is accessible to ONE MILLION people via the internet.

When you bear those facts in mind, and then connect them with this BNP membership database leak and the real harm it is going to cause to each and every one of the people on that list, you begin to get a sense of the scale of the disaster that ContactPoint is. The same is true of course of the National Identity Register (NIR) which powers the proposed ID Card. ALL databases are subject to this risk; the size of the list is irrelevant and leaks are not something that can ever be prevented, and in any case, ContactPoint and the NIR are designed to be accessed (which means copied) easily.

The shock that everyone feels at this list being released, the strong nosey desire to see who is on it; this will be replicated on an unprecedented scale if the NIR and ContactPoint are rolled out. It would certainly create a huge demand and market for illicit access to both these databases.

There could not be a better example of why these government databases are a bad idea. Everyone should now understand that the people on the BNP list are in danger, forever, because they were on a list that was released once by a single disgruntled person.

If such a release were to happen to ContactPoint, all 11 million children in the UK would be put at similar risk.

Here is a scenario that you might not like to think about.

Imagine a disgruntled employee makes a copy of the ContactPoint database and then does not make it public but sells it secretly to a criminal gang. No one would ever know that the copy had been made. Out of the 11 million children, hundreds would be cherry picked for kidnapping, and no one would be able to connect these kidnappings to the covert release of ContactPoint. That criminal gang could operate for years off of the ContactPoint data without anyone knowing.

That is a far more horrible scenario is it not? Do you feel queasy?

And of course, piecemeal copying of ContactPoint is just as bad; with one million people granted access to it, printing off pages, saving screen grabs and just writing down details with a pencil and a piece of paper, these sorts of criminal activities could happen without a wholesale data breach.

ContactPoint and the NIR / ID Card must be scrapped and never proposed again. They are perfect recipes for irrevocable disaster.

UPDATE

Some people who can code have put together mashups of the postcode / address lines and Google maps:

That one has been taken down.

This one is anonymized:
http://www.bnpnearme.co.uk/

Pilots to strike over ID cards

Tuesday, November 18th, 2008 by Irdial 1DnwFLXczVZV8kLJbMYoheUrpqHesjxrSi

Pilots threaten to strike over ID cards
The first wave of ID cards to be issued to British citizens has prompted airline pilots to threaten a strike rather than accept the documents.

The second Brass Balls™ award goes to the airline pilots who vote to strike.

Aviation workers have warned that proposals to make airport staff register for the cards from next year would do little to improve security. The British Airline Pilots Association (Balpa), which represents 10,000 of the 12,000 commercial pilots and flight engineers in Britain, said its members were being treated as “guinea pigs”. Jim McAuslan, Balpa’s general secretary, said the Government’s “early warning system should be flashing” over opposition to the plans.

The government doesnt have an early warning system. They are blind dumb and deaf when it comes to what actually works and what people’s concerns are. That is how they could ignore two million marchers demonstrating against an illegal immoral and unjustified attack against Iraq.

Pilots going on strike however is a different thing. These highly trained and completely indispensable people going on strike will cost the airlines millions of pounds. These pilots cannot be replaced with scabs. This action is going to hurt where the pain is felt most strongly; in the realm of money.

The Home Office insists the scheme will help airport workers improve security and streamline pass applications when staff move jobs.

They cannot demonstrate how these cards will improve security. All the people who work at airports currently are already carrying ID cards and have already been vetted. Another, state issued card cannot add any further security. If this is not the case, then they need to demonstrate how having TWO ID cards is better than having one.

Ministers will publish draft regulations on Friday to set up a trial requiring airside staff at Manchester airport and London City airport to sign up for an ID card before they can get security passes allowing them to work there. If the regulations are approved, the first ID cards will be issued at the two airports from autumn next year as part of an 18-month trial.

They should ALL go on strike and shut down the entire airport and air transport system of the UK. That would cause real economic damage and would force the government to back down.

Under the proposals, airport workers will be the first British citizens to be given ID cards, which are due to be introduced for young people from 2010.

But Mr McAuslan, whose union holds its annual conference at Heathrow later this week, said he would be consulting members on the possibility of industrial action if the Government presses ahead with the plans. “It may come to an industrial dispute,” he said. “We would want to avoid that. We would want the Government to think again about the compulsory nature of it and think again about the whole scheme. The Government has said previously that ID cards will be voluntary but the indications are that if you choose not to have a card you will not get an airside pass.”

That is a very diplomatic way of drawing a line in the sand. Bugs Bunny would have said, “Of course you know, this means war”.

The British Air Transport Association, which represents airlines including British Airways and Virgin Atlantic, branded the scheme a “dubious PR initiative by the Government and one that fails to offer any real benefits”.

Thats more Wile E Coyote.

The shadow Home Secretary, Dominic Grieve, said: “Labour should take their heads out of the sand and abandon this £19bn white elephant which will do nothing to improve our security but may well make it worse.” The Tories have pledged to scrap the scheme if elected. Chris Huhne, the Lib Dem home affairs spokesman, added: “It is no surprise that pilots are up in arms since they are one of the few groups selected as guinea pigs for this benighted experiment.”

And they will be the first to be lined up and violated; fingerprinted and scanned and given a number like concentration camp cattle. It is sickening, and finally everyone is starting to feel queasy.

But a spokesman for the Identity and Passport Service said: “Identity cards will directly benefit airside workers – not just by improving personnel security, but also by speeding up pre-employment checks and increasing the efficiency of pass-issuing arrangements.”

This is twice that they have said it would increase efficiency. This is a lie. Without an ID card no time is made making a meaningless check against the NIR when you apply for a job or go and buy a bottle of wine. And as for the lie of it “improving personnel security” they have to demonstrate how people who are already vetted and who already carry ID cards are going to be ‘more secure’ if they also carry a government ID card.

The timetable

*21 November 2008: Home Office issues draft rules on ID card trial at Manchester and London City airports.
*25 November: Home Office starts issuing ID cards for foreign nationals.
*March-May 2009: Regulations on trial scheme debated by Parliament.
*Autumn 2009: First airport staff to be given ID cards.
*2010: ID cards made available to young people for the first time.
*2011-12: Public invited to register for ID cards.
*2017: Vast majority of the population enrolled on ID card database.

[...]

The Independent

This timetable is nonsense of course.

They no doubt had a similar timetable for the adoption of the Poll Tax…and we all know what happened with that idea.

This idea is going to die.

Every group that they try and use as guinea pigs to stress test the enrollment system are going to violently refuse to be numbered and fingerprinted like criminal cattle.

If everyone says ‘NO!’ then the scheme dies. We have said this over and over and over again.

Of course, the Independent fails to ask any of the questions that a normal person would ask, like “how will this increase security”. They simply parrot the line from the Passport service and the Home Office like trained dogs.

But we expect that.

Don’t Talk to Sociologists

Tuesday, November 18th, 2008 by meau meau

Now in the relations between man and man, the worst that can hapen is for one to find himself at the mercy of another, and it would have been inconsistent with common sense to begin by bestowing on a chief the only things they wanted his help to preserve. What equivalent could he offer them for so great a right? And if he had presumed to exact it under pretext of defending them, would he not have received the answer recorded in the fable: ‘What more can the enemy do to us?’ It is therefore beyond dispute , and indeed the fundamental maxim of all political right, that people have set up cheifs to protect their liberty, and not to enslve them. ‘If we have a prince,’ said Pliny to Trajan, ‘it is to save ourselves from having a master.’
Politicians indulge in the same sophistry about the love of liberty as philosophers about the state of nature. They judge, by what they see, of very different things, which they have not seen; they attribute to man a natural propensity to servitude, because the slaves within their observation are seen to bear the yoke with patience; they fail to reflect that it is with liberty as with innocenceand virtue; the value is only known to those who possess them, and the taste for them is forfeited when they are forfeited themselves. ‘I know the charms of your country,’ said Brasidas to a Satrap, who was compaing the life at Sparta with that at Persepolis, ‘but you cannot know the pleasures of mine.’

[…]

We cannot therefore , from the serility of nations already enslaved, judge of the natural disposition of mankind for or against slavery; we should go by the prodigious efforts of every free people to save itself from oppression. I know that the former are forever holding forth in praise of the tranquility they enjoy in their chains, and that they call a state of wretched servitude a state of peace: miserrimam servitutem pacem appellant. But when I observe the latter sacrificing pleasure, peace, wealth, power, and life itself to the preservation of that one treasure, which is so disdained by those who have lost it; when I see free-born animals dash their brains out against the bars of their cage, from an innate impatience of captivity; when I behold numbers of naked savages, that despise European pleasures, braving hunger, fire, the sword, and death, to preserve nothing but their independence, I feel that it is not for slaves to argue about liberty.

Jean-Jaques Rousseau, A Discourse on the Origin of Inequality

The mother of invention

Tuesday, November 18th, 2008 by Strep Throat

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/fury-mounts-over-childs-death-1021670.html

It is completely unsurprising that some people will overreact when confronted by a story in which harm has been done to “kiddies”.

What is surprising in this case is the means chosen to protest. This angry local chose to suggest that council tax payers of Haringey withold their taxes until their demand (sacking of an ‘incompetent’ official) is met.

Who knows for sure why, but one may imagine it felt right, one may say logical, to this person that this was a way to directly affect the council and make them take notice… Now if one irate ranter can find the right answer, why do so many ‘intellectuals’ still insist on marching and signing pieces of paper?!?

Mark Shuttleworth, gold, Ubuntu, capitalism, freedom and software

Monday, November 17th, 2008 by Irdial 1DnwFLXczVZV8kLJbMYoheUrpqHesjxrSi

Let’s start with a superb essay by Lew Rockwell:

The Myth of Good Government

by Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr.

One of the great and most persistent errors of classical liberals is to believe in “good government,” a government that does “what it is supposed to do.”

There is nothing the state can do, which society needs done, that cannot be done far better by the market. Another point that is just as telling: no state empowered to do what is supposedly necessary will restrain itself to those things. It will expand as much as public opinion will tolerate.

Sometimes the point is easier to see when looking at foreign governments, such as the tragic case of China. The government is embarking on an explosive venture to dump $586 billion into “infrastructure” over two years. The reason is the classic Keynesian excuse: the spending is needed to stimulate investment. Never mind that this trick has never worked in all of human history. This is instead a grand plan to loot the private sector on behalf of the Communist Party, which will then spend the money bolstering its power.

No country knows more about the failures of this type of central planning than China. Every form of collectivism has been tried out on these poor souls, and tens of millions lost their lives in the course of Mao’s insane collectivist experiments. That this new plan is being enacted in the name of Lord Keynes rather than Karl Marx is irrelevant. The effects are the same: expand power and reduce liberty.

China’s recovery from communism is one of the most inspiring stories in the history of economic development. The country went from being a suffering and impoverished land of catastrophe to being modernized in just 15 years. The state shrunk in scope nearly by default as the private sector grew and grew. This wasn’t the plan. It was the de facto result of the new tolerance of free economic activity. The state went into protective mode to keep its power, and did nothing to stop the swell of private enterprise. The result was glorious.

Keep in mind this critical point. China’s restoration as a civilized society came about not due to some central plan, but by its absence. The fact that the state did not intervene led to prosperity. Again, it wasn’t a policy or a constitution or a law that made the difference. There was no switch from a communist-style government to a night-watchman state. Because the state abandoned its posts under public opposition and contempt, society could flourish.

But the state never went away. It’s just that its depredations have been spotty and unpredictable. Had history taken a better course, the central state would have melted away completely, and law would have devolved to the most local levels. Sadly for the Chinese, the state persisted in its old structure, even as the private sector grew and grew. The state still had its hand in the large industries such as steel and energy, and, of course, it controlled the banking sector.

The government never became good (an impossibility). It was and is bad. It was just less bad than in the past because it did less. But all states lie in wait for a crisis. The earthquake in the southwest provided one great excuse for intervention. But nothing except war compares with an economic crisis as a great excuse for state expansion. Chinese officials can count on support from Western “experts” here, and the thoroughly disgusting US response to our own economic downturn has provided an awful model for the world. Think of it: the Communist Party in China is now citing the US as the main reason for its plot to loot the private sector and bolster its own power at the expense of the country.

So much for being a beacon of liberty in a dark world! Instead, the US is helping to shut out the lights and bolster decrepit despotisms. This is surely one of the great ironies of the current political moment. Instead of teaching the world about liberty, the US’s newly empowered unitary executive is christening various forms of dictatorship.

There can be no question that China’s spending will not improve economic growth. It will instead extract $586 billion from the private sector and spend on political priorities. Never forget that no government has wealth of its own to spend. It must come from taxation, monetary inflation, or debt expansion that must be paid later. And government’s spending choices will always be uneconomic relative to how society would use that wealth. That is to say, it will be wasted.

But won’t the spending spur investment? It can create local boomlets, but they will be temporary. To the extent that the new spending causes a spending response from investors and consumers, this is more evidence of an uneconomic use of scarce resources. If the money is used to prop up failing companies, that’s particularly bad since it is an attempt to override market realities, an attempt that is about as successful as trying to repeal gravity by throwing things up in the air.

The nature of the state – and the core of its rationale for existence – is the conviction that it stands apart from and above society, to correct the failings of the market and individuals. A presumption of superiority is at the very claim of the state, whether it is minimal or totalitarian. Who is to say when and where it should intervene? Well, think about it. If the state is inherently wiser than and superior to society, standing in judgment over what is working and what is not working, the state alone is also in a position to decide when it should intervene.

No government is liberal by nature, said Ludwig von Mises. This is the great lesson that people who advocate “limited government” have never learned. If you give the government any jobs to do, it will presume the right to police its own conduct and then inevitably abuse its power. That is true in China and it is true in the US.

It was the science of economics that first discovered the radical incapacity of the state to make any improvements in the social order. It turns science on its head to invoke economics as a reason for the government to loot and pillage in the name of “stimulating investment.” Stimulation here, there, and everywhere amounts to a diminution of freedom, security of property, and prosperity.

Keynes famously praised Nazi economic policies in the introduction to the German edition of his worst book, the General Theory. After a century of horrors, free men and women, in China, the US, and the world surely deserve better.

[...]

Lew Rockwell

Fascinating and true.

If China can turn itself around in 15 years and the state shrink in scope nearly by default, and if banking is the last and most important bastion of state control, what could we expect if the resourceful Chinese adopt a private currency on a large scale?

There would be nothing that the state could do without destroying the economy if the currency was spread quickly and widely enough.

The question is how should such a currency be designed and rapidly deployed?

It would have to be some form of precious metal in denominations that made it practical for many types of transaction, from small groceries to buying a car.

In the past the wealthy of China used ingots:

and of course, the peasants used many different types of coin:


Chinese bronze coin from the Han Dynasty

and look at these coins, with their tamper evident edges:

And this is pretty…sorry, just had to throw it in:

Essentially, you need a mint, to think about the denominations and then to distribute the coins and bullion. It would be a good idea to get hundreds of millions of people to use vast amounts of low denomination gold coins; then by exchange, certain individuals, probably shop owners, would start to accumulate large numbers of coins.

Thinking about it, that is absolutely the way to seed a new economy that runs on a private currency; many small coins whose value goes up to, say the equivalent of a €500 note, spread to as many individuals as possible, so that daily exchange is made as easy as possible for everything from a bowl of noodles to a bicycle.

This brilliant piece by Lew Rockwell is well timed. Some people are organizing demonstrations outside every Federal Reserve building to ‘End The Fed’. These people haven’t got a hope in hell of ending the Federal Reserve system if all they have in their arsenal are the discredited tactics of the twentieth century.

They correctly identify the Federal Reserve as the cause of many ills and the recent crash; what they do not understand is the true nature of the force that should operate to control interest rates in absentia of central banks. The Market.

If they understood the true the power of the market, they would try and harness it directly to end the Fed, and not protest like beggars asking for oatmeal in the poor house. If they understood anything at all about problem solving they would never opt to demonstrate. Readers of BLOGDIAL know the truth about demonstrating.

If they want to solve this problem, they need to attack it directly. That means attacking the Federal Reserve Notes by issuing their own private currency, and then using it for all their transactions. There are difficulties in doing this, and one of them is Gresham’s Law:

Britannica Concise Encyclopedia: Gresham’s law

Observation that “bad money drives out good.” It is named for Sir Thomas Gresham (1519 – 1579), financial agent of Queen Elizabeth I, who was one of the first to elucidate it (he had been preceded by Copernicus). The meaning expressed is that, if two coins have the same face value but are made from metals of unequal value, the cheaper will tend to drive the other out of circulation; the more valuable coin will be hoarded or used for foreign exchange instead of for domestic transactions.

If that law is true, then issuing a private currency made of gold will have difficulty driving out Federal Reserve Notes. Hmmmmmm.

Small digression.

With the internet, it should be possible to distribute a private physical currency everywhere in a very short amount of time, and to spread information about it virally.

While we are at it, Obama wants to shut down internet payment systems that he does not like:

Develop a Cyber Crime Strategy to Minimize the Opportunities for Criminal Profit: Barack Obama will shut down the mechanisms used to transmit criminal profits by shutting down untraceable Internet payment schemes. Barack Obama will also initiate a grant and training program to provide federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies the tools they need to detect and prosecute cyber crime.

[...]

Barack Obama

“shutting down untraceable Internet payment schemes” means shutting down any payment system that does not allow back door automatic surveillance. Obviously. It means more laws to meddle in our internetz; laws that will inevitably have spill-over into things other than ‘payment systems’.

Another small digression.

Other private currency vendors (Mints) would no doubt spring up with their own coins, adding to the choices and flexibility.

Either way, you will not stop the bailouts, stop the war machine, or end the Federal Reserve if you do not have control of the money. A private currency is not going to appear from nowhere by magic; someone has to design it properly and release it, and according to this post on mises.org, the Liberty Dollar is not what it should look like:

Silver

As a student of Austrian Economics and supporter of commodity money, I regard the assault upon the American Liberty Dollar (ALD) with alarm and sadness, but not surprise.

While nothing the ALD firm did was clearly criminal, in that no force or overt fraud was used, their tactics could charitably be described as sleazy. They were designed to trade silver medallions to the ignorant and unwary at premiums that were many multiples of the market norm. In doing so, they created unnecessary complexity and confusion about hard money.

Consider:
1) Appropriating the face of Ron Paul without so much as asking his permission. Yes, he is a public figure so the appropriation will not be considered criminal, but it is feels sleazy.

2) Erecting a multilevel marketing scheme that provides profits that have at times exceeded 100% to insiders. The tale (face value) of the ALD was raised from $10 to $20 when the market price for an ounce of silver crossed $7.50. ALD dealers split the $12+ profit with the ALD firm. I am not against profits, I seek them. But I know where I can buy 1 ozt silver medallions, including ALDs, at less than $1 over spot silver. Only the ignorant pay such exorbitant prices for silver coins.

3) Creating confusion and needless complexity by marking their coins with a dollar-denominated tale. Unlike countless other silver coins with tales denominated in STU (silver trade unit), WTU, Sovereign, or simply weight, the ALD was denominated in dollars, a figure reserved to government-issued, primarily US and Canadian, currencies.

Mises himself taught, in The Theory of Money and Credit “…at all times and among all peoples the principal coins have been tendered and accepted, not by tale without consideration of their quantity and quality, but only as pieces of metal of specific degrees of weight and fineness. Where coins have been accepted by tale, this has always been in the definite belief that the stamp showed them to be of the usual fineness of their kind and of the correct weight. Where there were no grounds for this assumption, weighing and testing were resorted to again.

Nevertheless, in defiance of all official regulations and prohibitions and fixing of prices and threats of punishment, commercial practice has always insisted that what has to be considered in valuing coins is not their face value but their value as metal. The value of a coin has always been determined, not by the image and superscription it bears nor by the proclamation of the mint and market authorities, but by its metal content. Not every kind of money has been accepted at sight, but only those kinds with a good reputation for weight and fineness.”

4) Exploiting the self-made confusion of the tale by crowing about the “doubling” of the ALD when they changed the tale from 10 to 20 “dollars” per ozt. “Immediately all Liberty Dollars, in specie, paper and digital forms DOUBLED. If you had Liberty Dollars before the Move Up you profited because the underlying commodity increased in value. If you had digital, your eLD doubled the next day. If you had paper Silver Certificates, you could redeem them for the new $20 Silver Libertys. If you had Silver Liberty in specie form, you were offered a special re-minting rate to exchange them for new $20 Silver Libertys.” Liberty Dollar Doubles

Of course, nothing had changed, 1 ozt of silver remained 1 ozt of silver, and by marking their coins in “dollars” they were caught in the inflation of FRNs. Few “$10″ ALDs were actually re-minted; they now circulate with all other silver medallions, currently at premiums of $0.60 to $1 over spot in small quantities (1 to 500 coins).

5) Slander of Walmart (big firm in Bentonville) and the implication that competing silver medallions are not pure in The Liberty Dollar Merchant Script.

6) Note also in that document the multiple referrals to “local business referral currency.” The appeal is to autarky rather than free commerce, with more slander to the effect that “big box retailers are in bed with the big bankers.”

The ultimate argument of the ALD firm boils down to this: A number stamped on an ounce of silver changes its value, and so determines whether it will or will not circulate. The explicit assumption is that “average” people are too stupid to know that a Liberty mint or A-mark 1 ozt silver coin with no dollar figure stamped on it and a norfed ALD with some fictional number of “dollars” stamped on it are really and truly the same thing: 1 ozt of fine silver with markings to prove that fact. Period.

The arrogant conceit that most people are too stupid to understand weight of metal without the assistance of a self-proclaimed “monetary architect” is breathtaking. History and present-day practice shows that always and everywhere precious metal coins are valued by weight and fineness (purity) with minor adjustments for being widely recognized, particularly beautiful, or other characteristics.

The aggressive tactics created by the ALD firm and taught to ALD dealers were designed to fool the unwary into believing that an ounce of silver was worth far more than the free market price. Indeed, some ALD dealers vehemently defend the large premiums attached to their products. In at least some cases, ALDs were passed to unsuspecting clerks with a casual “Oh, that’s the new twenty dollar coin.” Owners and managers discovered the deciet in the till only after the dealer was long gone. These tactics caused an increasing number in inquiries to government agencies, district attorneys, and police. It was not successful competition with FRNs that killed the ALD, it was attracting the attention of government agents with methods that had the look and feel of a scam.

The ALD firm did not deserve to be shut down, but if commodity money ever makes a return, it will do so in spite of ALD-created confusion and without multilevel marketing profit margins. In the happy future where silver and gold coins are used in daily commerce, the markups associated with minting and distributing the coins will fall to their historical norms of a few percent over melt value.

[...]

The Liberty Dollar Question – Mises Economics Blog

Clearly there are a substantial number of people with sufficient knowledge to design a optimal currency to replace Federal Reserve Notes, and there is a demand for this service that will only grow stronger as the value of everyone’s savings starts to evaporate at an ever greater pace thanks to the heat of inflation boiling away the value of the dollar.

We wrote before about the Totnes Pound; there is a demand for clean money not only in the USA but in Great Britain.

The question I have is, who is going to be the one to put their fortune into launching a private currency? What sort of person are we looking for? It seems to me that a Mark Shuttleworth type is the most likely candidate; someone who has been made aware of these problems and the solution and who will see in themselves a beneficial instrument of liberation:

This is not the end of capitalism

Some of the comments on my last post on the economic unwinding of 2008 suggested that people think we are witnessing the end of capitalism and the beginning of a new socialist era.

I certainly hope not.

I think a world without regulated capitalism would be a bleak one indeed. I had the great privilege to spend a year living in Russia in 2001/2002, and the visible evidence of the destruction wrought by central planning was still very much present. We are all ultimately human, with human failings, whether we work for a state planning agency or a private company, and those failings have consequences either way. To think that moving all private enterprise into state hands will somehow create a panacea of efficiency and sustainability is to ignore the stark lessons of the 20th century.

The leaders and decision makers in a centrally-planned economy are just as fallible as those in a capitalist one – they would probably be the same people! But state enterprises lack the forces of evolution that apply in a capitalist economy – state enterprises are rarely if ever allowed to fail. And hence bad ideas are perpetuated indefinitely, and an economy becomes dysfunctional to the point of systemic collapse. It is the fact that private enterprises fail which keeps industries vibrant. The tension between the imperative to innovate and the consequences of failure drives capitalist economies to evolve quickly. Despite all of the nasty consequences that we have seen, and those we have yet to see, of capitalism gone wrong, I am still firmly of the view that society must tap into its capitalist strengths if it wants to move forward.

[...]

http://www.markshuttleworth.com/archives/227

In fact, Mark Shuttleworth is a PERFECT candidate, as we can see. He just doesn’t know it yet.

In case you didn’t know, Mark Shuttleworth is a South African philanthropist genius billionaire who single handedly accelerated the adoption of Linux and put it into the hands of the masses with Ubuntu. I say single handedly because he financed it by himself; where other distributions were getting better and better slowly like Fedora, Mark Shuttleworth took the Debian distribution and turned it into something that anyone anywhere could use by pouring money, philosophy and hard work onto Debian. The result has been a complete success, and now Ubuntu is being sold on Dell laptops as standard.

There are not many capitalists who understand the Open Source business model and its associated philosophies. Just look at the irrational buggy whip thinking of the music and film industry to hear what ordinary, unintelligent business people think about making money from giving away something for free.

The right man for this job would understand scale. He would understand networks, both internet and real world. He would be driven by philosophy as much as the desire to make money. He would understand the philosophy behind the Free Software movement. He would also have a grasp of banking and how currencies work. He would be able to apply and to synthesize all of this into a project to spread debt free, central banking free currency that is owned by and for the benefit of the public…just like Ubuntu is.

I could not think of a better time to launch such a project; the dollar is collapsing, the headless chickens of the G20 are all jockeying around for a ‘solution’. What better time to checkmate them all with the release of a new, private currency that trumps them all, into which everyone can convert their savings and buy their bread with.

Now that would be something worth while!

Now ContactPoint is three times worse!

Friday, November 14th, 2008 by Irdial 1DnwFLXczVZV8kLJbMYoheUrpqHesjxrSi

Up to a million public sector workers could be allowed to access a Government database containing sensitive information on every child in England and Wales, it has emerged.

Critics say the figure is three times higher than ministers told Parliament, and raises further privacy concerns about the controversial ContactPoint system.

The database will contain the name, home address and school of all 11million children. It will also include information about their legal guardians.

It is designed to make it easier for public bodies to share information. Those permitted by law to access it include bureaucrats such as school ‘administrators’ and ‘any employee’ of a police force.

But campaigners fear that the greater the number of users, the more chance the database will be trawled by the likes of abusive former partners seeking a reunion.

Phil Booth, of the NO2ID privacy campaign, said: ‘Rather than the 330,000 they have previously suggested – which was bad enough – it appears that a million or more people will be able to get access under the terms of the Children Act.

‘This, in the light of the Government’s own auditors saying that ContactPoint could never be made secure, paints a deeply disturbing picture.’

Maria Miller, Conservative spokesman for children, schools and families said: ‘They have grossly underestimated the number of people who will have access to children’s data and now more children will be put at risk. ContactPoint should be scrapped.’

And Baroness Sue Miller, a Liberal Democrat peer with a special interest in data protection issues, said: ‘The ContactPoint system was dubious to start with. It would have been irrelevant to key cases such as that of Victoria Climbie. This latest revelation merely makes it at least three times worse.’

Lord Adonis and Kevin Brennan, ministers for the Department for Children, Schools and Families, have told both houses of Parliament that ‘the number of users (of ContactPoint) is estimated to be around 330,000’.

But the legislation governing the database lists a huge number who could potentially be granted access.

These range from senior police officers and headmasters to officers of local probation area boards and administrators working in schools or further education colleges.

Publicly available staffing figures from education authorities, the NHS, social services and other organisations show that the number of those falling into the categories listed by the Government is one million, according to the respected technology news website Register .

The system, which is the centrepiece of the Government’s Every Child Matters strategy, has been shrouded in controversy since it was first announced, and has been delayed twice.

Both the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats have pledged to scrap ContactPoint.

The Tories want to replace it with a smaller system that will only hold data on children deemed at risk.

Whitehall officials wrote to councils in October arguing against the alternative scheme.

The DCSF later apologised for the breach of civil service political impartiality rules.

A spokesman for the department said: ‘Access to ContactPoint will be strictly limited to those who need it as part of their work and subject to stringent security controls. Not everyone who works in one of the roles listed in the regulations will be permitted access.

‘We have consistently maintained that the estimated number of users for ContactPoint is around 330,000, and this takes into account those needing access across all relevant sectors. This number was informed by the experience of trailblazers, who developed their own systems locally.’

[...]

Daily Mail

This means that:

The ContactPoint data will escape in one third of the time we predicted.
There will be three times as many opportunities for paedophiles to gain access to the data.
There will be three times as many people who will be approached for illicit access.

Gordon Brown has already admitted that they can never keep ContactPoint data safe because it is being run by human beings.

That means that he understands that he is a paedophile facilitator by knowingly setting up this database with foreknowledge that the data will escape and end in the abuse of children.

Celente Predicts Revolution, Food Riots, Tax Rebellions By 2012

Thursday, November 13th, 2008 by Irdial 1DnwFLXczVZV8kLJbMYoheUrpqHesjxrSi

by Paul Joseph Watson

stock market

The man who predicted the 1987 stock market crash and the fall of the Soviet Union is now forecasting revolution in America, food riots and tax rebellions – all within four years, while cautioning that putting food on the table will be a more pressing concern than buying Christmas gifts by 2012.

Gerald Celente, the CEO of Trends Research Institute, is renowned for his accuracy in predicting future world and economic events, which will send a chill down your spine considering what he told Fox News this week.

Celente says that by 2012 America will become an undeveloped nation, that there will be a revolution marked by food riots, squatter rebellions, tax revolts and job marches, and that holidays will be more about obtaining food, not gifts.

“We’re going to see the end of the retail Christmas….we’re going to see a fundamental shift take place….putting food on the table is going to be more important that putting gifts under the Christmas tree,” said Celente, adding that the situation would be “worse than the great depression”.

“America’s going to go through a transition the likes of which no one is prepared for,” said Celente, noting that people’s refusal to acknowledge that America was even in a recession highlights how big a problem denial is in being ready for the true scale of the crisis.

Celente says that by 2012 America will become an undeveloped nation, that there will be a revolution marked by food riots, squatter rebellions, tax revolts and job marches, and that holidays will be more about obtaining food, not gifts.

Celente, who successfully predicted the 1997 Asian Currency Crisis, the subprime mortgage collapse and the massive devaluation of the U.S. dollar, told UPI in November last year that the following year would be known as “The Panic of 2008,” adding that “giants (would) tumble to their deaths,” which is exactly what we have witnessed with the collapse of Lehman Brothers, Bear Stearns and others. He also said that the dollar would eventually be devalued by as much as 90 per cent.

The consequence of what we have seen unfold this year would lead to a lowering in living standards, Celente predicted a year ago, which is also being borne out by plummeting retail sales figures.

The prospect of revolution was a concept echoed by a British Ministry of Defence report last year, which predicted that within 30 years, the growing gap between the super rich and the middle class, along with an urban underclass threatening social order would mean, “The world’s middle classes might unite, using access to knowledge, resources and skills to shape transnational processes in their own class interest,” and that, “The middle classes could become a revolutionary class.”

In a separate recent interview, Celente went further on the subject of revolution in America.

“There will be a revolution in this country,” he said. “It’s not going to come yet, but it’s going to come down the line and we’re going to see a third party and this was the catalyst for it: the takeover of Washington, D. C., in broad daylight by Wall Street in this bloodless coup. And it will happen as conditions continue to worsen.”

“The first thing to do is organize with tax revolts. That’s going to be the big one because people can’t afford to pay more school tax, property tax, any kind of tax. You’re going to start seeing those kinds of protests start to develop.”
“It’s going to be very bleak. Very sad. And there is going to be a lot of homeless, the likes of which we have never seen before. Tent cities are already sprouting up around the country and we’re going to see many more.”

“We’re going to start seeing huge areas of vacant real estate and squatters living in them as well. It’s going to be a picture the likes of which Americans are not going to be used to. It’s going to come as a shock and with it, there’s going to be a lot of crime. And the crime is going to be a lot worse than it was before because in the last 1929 Depression, people’s minds weren’t wrecked on all these modern drugs – over-the-counter drugs, or crystal meth or whatever it might be. So, you have a huge underclass of very desperate people with their minds chemically blown beyond anybody’s comprehension.”

The George Washington blog has compiled a list of quotes attesting to Celente’s accuracy as a trend forecaster.

“When CNN wants to know about the Top Trends, we ask Gerald Celente.” — CNN Headline News

“A network of 25 experts whose range of specialties would rival many university faculties.”
— The Economist

“Gerald Celente has a knack for getting the zeitgeist right.” — USA Today

“There’s not a better trend forecaster than Gerald Celente. The man knows what he’s talking about.”
- CNBC

“Those who take their predictions seriously … consider the Trends Research Institute.”
— The Wall Street Journal

“Gerald Celente is always ahead of the curve on trends and uncannily on the mark … he’s one of the most accurate forecasters around.”— The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

“Mr. Celente tracks the world’s social, economic and business trends for corporate clients.”
— The New York Times

“Mr. Celente is a very intelligent guy. We are able to learn about trends from an authority.”
— 48 Hours, CBS News

“Gerald Celente has a solid track record. He has predicted everything from the 1987 stock market crash and the demise of the Soviet Union to green marketing and corporate downsizing.”
— The Detroit News

“Gerald Celente forecast the 1987 stock market crash, ‘green marketing,’ and the boom in gourmet coffees.” — Chicago Tribune

“The Trends Research Institute is the Standard and Poors of Popular Culture.”
— The Los Angeles Times

“If Nostradamus were alive today, he’d have a hard time keeping up with Gerald Celente.”
— New York Post

So there you have it – hardly a nutjob conspiracy theorist blowhard now is he? The price of not heeding his warnings will be far greater than the cost of preparing for the future now. Storable food and gold are two good places to make a start.

http://www.infowars.com/?p=5938

Monster Music 15

Sunday, November 9th, 2008 by Irdial 1DnwFLXczVZV8kLJbMYoheUrpqHesjxrSi

MixwitMixwit make a mixtapeMixwit mixtapes

ID Cards: the death rattle

Friday, November 7th, 2008 by Irdial 1DnwFLXczVZV8kLJbMYoheUrpqHesjxrSi

Yesterday there was a deluge of PR paid propaganda – bullshit if you will – trying to sell the ID Card with the hideous prostitute Jacqui Smith making outrageous claims.

The lying lickspittle bastard repeater journalists at the BBC tweaked this first article during the day for maximum impact and under orders. We grabbed both pages.

First we have this:
12:20 GMT, Thursday, 6 November 2008

and then we have this, later in the day:

15:57 GMT, Thursday, 6 November 2008

The title of the page changed from ‘Shops may take ID card biometrics’ to ‘People ‘can’t wait for ID cards’. The first title is obviously more pertinent, more astonishing and alarming because of the implications of shops taking Biometrics. Later, it was changed to a pure and very cheesy propaganda headline after pressure no doubt from the office of that kebab eating monster. There have been seven versions so far.

The facts of the matter remain unchanged however.

HMG actually plans to allow people to enroll in the ID Card scheme / NIR from inside Tescos.

Do you know what this means? It means that the NIR is going to be full of bad entries. People will be able to go to Tescos and get themselves onto the NIR claiming to be someone who they are not, maybe even you, which is the absolute opposite of what the government has been saying all along was the purpose of this vile and pointless database and its associated card. Perhaps that is exactly what they want – you to be frightened of someone getting there first and stealing your identity. “Claim your identity now before someone else does!” will be the call.

This ugly, chinless, subhuman, totalitarian garbage actually claims that people ‘can’t wait for ID Cards’; this is the sound of sheer desperation my friends. Look at the comments on BBQ’s ‘Have Your Say’. I think Jacqui Smith is a delusional liar and the only people she has been speaking to are figments of her insane and deeply troubled mind:

Added: Thursday, 6 November, 2008, 07:38 GMT 07:38 UK

Not one bit! And I won’t be buying or carrying one!

This is another snooping measure from the NuLabour Gestapo state. I make this appeal to everybody to refuse to buy or carry this insidious document. If you receive a communication from any department of the Fascist NuLabour apparatus about it cut it up and send it back, unstamped, to some government department!

Let us call time on this now!

Robert Phillifent, Whitley Bay
Recommended by 266 people

Added: Thursday, 6 November, 2008, 09:12 GMT 09:12 UK

ID cards:

- nobody wants them
- they won’t make us any safer
- the government will lose all the sensitive information anyway

Hokey Cokey, london, United Kingdom
Recommended by 257 people

Added: Thursday, 6 November, 2008, 09:13 GMT 09:13 UK

Why dont they just tatoo or brand us all? We could all be marked with a number at birth to make sure we were all identifiable.

Hold on, something in the back of my mind tells me that a similar method to this may have been used before?

How did that turn out?

[Free_Scotland], Grangemouth, Scotland
Recommended by 204 people

Added: Thursday, 6 November, 2008, 09:11 GMT 09:11 UK

Remember everyone – it’s not just a piece of plastic, it’s the vast database behind it too… all your data, addresses, accounts, policies, pensions, all of it nicely formatted and ready to be left on trains, in car parks, in brief cases, lost laptops etc etc

Chris Chris
Recommended by 201 people

Added: Thursday, 6 November, 2008, 07:49 GMT 07:49 UK

I do not think these cards will do much to improve security. Instead, we will have one card which proves who you are, and when this is cracked and cloned by organised crime (and believe me it will be) it will make avoiding detection and stealing identity much easier for them.

Matt Gallop, Brighton
Recommended by 181 people

Added: Thursday, 6 November, 2008, 07:49 GMT 07:49 UK

ID cards for the whole population once again punishes the general population for the lack of control of immigrants. When will the government target risk groups & stop wasting everybodys time by monitoring the activities of everyone.

John Doe, United Kingdom
Recommended by 173 people

Alert a Moderator

Added: Thursday, 6 November, 2008, 09:12 GMT 09:12 UK

What is it in the words ‘this ID card system would be unworkable’ does Jacqui Spliff not understand? Security specialists have stated that it would not work and cards can be cloned.copied or falsified with todays technology. Aftter the many fiascos of data going missing, how many times is it now? Would you trust this lot with digitalised information about you? No chance. With the billions wasted on useless IT systems by this government I wouldn’t trust them to run a raffle. Forget it Spliff.

Maximus, Boxgrove UK
Recommended by 168 people

Added: Thursday, 6 November, 2008, 07:36 GMT 07:36 UK

Yet another money wasting scheme from our illustrious Government.

They are not listening to the electorate, nobody wants ID cards, and as far as I know, nobody has been able to make them “secure”.

Plus can we trust them with our data? Based on countless examples over recent years its obvious the answer is no.

At a time when the UK needs all the money it can get, to pay its billions on previous commitments, you would have thought that schemes like this would have been postponed.

clive hamilton, woking
Recommended by 163 people

Added: Thursday, 6 November, 2008, 09:08 GMT 09:08 UK

This is not about terrorism! It’s about controlling the population and keeping tabs on them and their movements. Liabor are control freaks and they want to micro-manage every aspect of our live’s and that includes us. We should say no to this and do all we can to stop ID cards from becoming a reality. Is there not already enough information about each and every one of us in their databases? Do I not already have ID we carry? Why should I pay for something I don’t want or need?

Neil, Brighton
Recommended by 147 people

Added: Thursday, 6 November, 2008, 07:39 GMT 07:39 UK

How many times do we need this same debate? According to the government itself, the checks that should be performed for airport workers are much more stringent that those for the ID card.

In what was does that improve security of the public?

Once again, the government presses ahead with projects to catalogue every citizen and no-one appears willing to stop them in their tracks.

RJ, Zurich
Recommended by 147 people

Added: Thursday, 6 November, 2008, 09:11 GMT 09:11 UK

So, I have a birth certificate, photo driving license, passport credit cards and more and yet I need ANOTHER piece of ID. Can someone tell me why?

Unless this would replace the driving license and passport, it is, in my opinion, a ridiculous waste of time and money. As for fighting terrorism…..is having an ID card going to stop someone making a bomb? The logic escapes me.

Hard Working, Bracknell, United Kingdom
Recommended by 143 people

Added: Thursday, 6 November, 2008, 07:46 GMT 07:46 UK

To try to kid us that this is not a Gestapo act, Clown says, we must have an ID card but will not have to carry it at all times. So when a terrorist is asked to present his/her card at the police station within a week……!!
Yes I think that will definitely deter terrorists from blowing up Britain.

[anotherjames]
Recommended by 125 people

Added: Thursday, 6 November, 2008, 07:48 GMT 07:48 UK

Don’t they already have ID cards or security checks for “people working in specific sensitive roles or locations” in airports? I’m pretty sure that there is already an ID systetm in place for airport workers.

This is just a sneaky way to try and tenderise public acceptance towards nationwide cataloguing. You give an inch…

Blue-eyed cyclops, Norwich, United Kingdom
Recommended by 125 people

Added: Thursday, 6 November, 2008, 07:40 GMT 07:40 UK

ID cards are just a scam to take an ID card fee from every adult in the UK. They’re a stealth tax, nothing more.

anon., UK
Recommended by 119 people

Added: Thursday, 6 November, 2008, 09:07 GMT 09:07 UK

The only way I can see ID Cards helping in the fight against terrorism is if they have sharp corners, and you can jab them in to someone’s eyes to stop them blowing something up.

Or maybe – if they were really big and made of metal and teflon – you could hold it up in front of you to protect yourself from a bomb blast.

Or you could jam them in a door to stop it opening and letting in a person with a bomb…..

The possibilities are endless!

[angelholme], Blackpool, United Kingdom
Recommended by 117 people

[...]

Have Your Say

Total comments: 2134
Published comments: 1643
Rejected comments: 39
Moderation queue: 452

Methinks that the argument is lost Jacqui, you piece of trash. Almost all of the comments are violently against the idea of ID cards and this database.

The first comment is one of the best, and it is what we have been recommending for years; simply do not respond or react to anything that is sent to you. If everyone does it, the whole system dies, and that is that.

As we pointed out before, the unions are finally waking up to this problem and are going to cause trouble:

[...]

The Unite union, which represents airport workers, has said staff are already extensively vetted before being given airside passes.

Airport unions have been resisting the scheme, saying workers would have to pay £30 for a card to do their jobs.

However, it is understood that the cards would be issued free during the evaluation period.

Airlines including British Airways, Virgin Atlantic and EasyJet, also spoke out against the plan, saying it was “unjustified” and would not improve security.

On plans to involve retailers and the Post Office in the ID cards scheme, a spokesman said it would be “more convenient” for people than the government’s original plan to set up enrolment centres in large population centres.

The Identity and Passport Service (IPS) would continue to carry out enrolment at its offices but a spokesman said it also wanted to “drive down costs using market forces and competition” and was talking to a “range of high street retailers and other organisations”.

[...]

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/7712275.stm

I see. They will issue them free for the testers. Last time I checked, when you test something for someone, you get PAID for doing so, and ‘free’ is not paying. It does however mean that they have to eat the cost of rolling out this test because the reaction against the ID card has been so hostile. Finally.

Don’t you think its interesting that IPS wants to “drive down costs using market forces and competition”? If the market can be used in this way to drive down costs, why not let the market take care of the entire ‘problem’?

What we would have is a market response to the problem of ID, and we would get the most efficient solution, in the same way that the market has provided the most efficient solution to the provision of universal and dirt cheap cellular telephone coverage and access.

The problem with letting the market solve the ‘problem’ of ID is that there is no ID problem to be solved in the first place. Business can carry on totally successfully without ID cards; in fact, ID cards are a form of friction, slowing down commerce, not facilitating it in any way.

Only the government wants ID cards. Business doesn’t need them (like the absurd fascist nonsense of having to produce a Passport or ID to get a SIM card), the public does not need them or want them; only the chinless, foul toothed fascists like Jacqui Smith and her equally repulsive predecessors want them, because they are bereft of imagination, fascist in nature and on the payroll of the venal vendors who are in line for billions of pounds for generations.

Now on to the next, most revolting, astonishing and inexplicable article from propaganda central, AKA BBC News:

Foreign students: Identity cards

The UK Border Agency is to issue the first identity cards to foreign nationals who officials say are most at risk of abusing immigration rules – non-EU students and those on a marriage or civil partnership visa.

But how do foreign students feel about carrying identity cards and being targeted as “risk” categories?

WON JAE, 20, FROM KOREA, STUDYING PSYCHOLOGY AT UNIVERSITY COLLEGE LONDON (UCL)

Won Jae from Korea, studying at UCL

I think it would be OK to carry an identity card, so long as it wasn’t discriminatory.

At the moment if I go anywhere off campus I have to carry my passport as my identity, for example if I am buying alcoholic drinks, so it would be better to have a card. So long as it’s not discriminating me against UK people, it’s fine.

[...]

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/7635114.stm

First of all, every student except two (one from the US and one from Nigeria) on that page comes from a country where they have state issued ID cards, and have had them for decades. These people are the most sheepish, inured sad slaves imaginable. Won Jae is very well trained in double think:

I think it would be OK to carry an identity card, so long as it wasn’t discriminatory.

Well done Dear Leader in training! 2+2=5!

And you absolutely do not have to carry your passport to buy alcoholic drinks you moron. Learn something about the country you are studying in, it might help transform you from a slave into a human being.

What can you say to a parade of people like this?

Britain is a country where you used to be able to show, just by living here, that you do not need to have a totalitarian system of constant checks to create a thriving and tolerant society. All the Europeans who cannot imagine living without an ID card could be shown the 4th largest economy in the world doing very well, in fact, better than them, without ID cards and a police state.

Since when is the policy affecting the British public the business of foreign students? For sure, these students (wether they know it or not, and clearly this Korean does not) have rights and should never be compelled to carry an ID card; but since their acceptance of an ID card would inevitably lead to pressure on every British person to have one, why on earth are they being consulted at all, as if their opinion actually matters?

This page from the BBC is one of the most revolting, ill conceived and traitorous that I have ever read. To use foreigners from totalitarian states in this way to apply the force of opinion and change the outcome of a critical battle in the UK is treason, full stop. These people have no intention of living in Britain, and their approval of ID cards, once used to shoe-horn them in would still be here after they have left.

This is a sickening article. It made me so angry that I had to get up and go away for many hours.

The opinions of these people are absolutely irrelevant.

Should we have brought in ID cards in the ’70s because some ignorant Spaniards living under Francisco Franco ‘had no problem with it’ or as this young lady says

MI-YOUNG PARK, 24, KOREA, ENGLISH AT OXFORD HOUSE COLLEGE, LONDON
I think we need identity cards to buy things like alcohol or cigarettes. I have tried to show my Korean card, but they won’t accept it, so I have to carry my passport around with me which is really dangerous.

But I’m not staying in London for much longer, I’m applying to Emirates to be a flight attendant.

I think not.

ID cards are morally wrong. It doesn’t matter what anyone’s opinion is, in the same way that murder is wrong no matter who says otherwise. People like Gordon Brown and Jacqui Smith do not have any morals, and so they can mass murder and tag everyone like cattle without breaking a sweat, sleeping soundly every night. Those ignorant, annoying students might not have any understanding about ID cards, and may even want them; that does not mean that they are right, or that these foul instruments of totalitarian control should be introduced to Britain. What the Koreans do in their own country is their business, and I do not care about how they choose to live, and their way of life should have no influence or sway over what happens in a free country or in Britain.

To digress for a moment, none of these students seem to understand that if they take this card, it will mean that the police will be stopping and checking them just because they ‘look Korean’. They will be stopped and checked, and everyone else will be stopped and checked for these cards. These students are the trojan horse for this racist nightmare, where everyone will be profiled by what they look like on the spot. We have already been through this many times in the twentieth century…and this is the problem; all of these pathetic students are very young and have no memory or knowledge of the racist Suss Law (UK) and Pass Laws (South Africa) that caused so much friction and problems. They should all know better. They should all have better self correcting self preservation skills that ring alarm bells when someone wants to harm you or your fellow man. But then again, when you are born into a police state, you know nothing but the police state – its the same for the Spanish as it is for the Koreans and the Belgians.

The BBC, by putting on this parade of idiots has sunk to its lowest level ever, and as usual, there is no named person or editor to point the finger at for this scandalous, treasonous, infuriating article.

I have to say that despite all of this evil being thrown in our faces, that I am greatly pleased by the outpouring of hate against the ID card and Jacqui Smith / Neu Labour. It seems that we are actually very close to or on the tipping point now. There is no one left who is saying ‘nothing to hide, nothing to fear’ except the evil glove puppets in the pay of the vendors and HMG.

This is going to be abandoned completely, and shortly after that, ContactPoint will be scrapped. Gordon Brown has admitted that they can never keep data safe. That means that the children of Britain can never be kept safe once they are on ContactPoint. It means that they can never keep the personal details of these stupid students safe once they are on the NIR. It means that no one will be safe, and this is quite separate from the social ills that will arise from this evil mania for registers.

Once again, the first commenter had it precisely right:

If you receive a communication from any department of the Fascist NuLabour apparatus about it cut it up and send it back, unstamped, to some government department!

This is the only response needed. Make sure that you tell everyone exactly what you are doing and why, and encourage them to do the same, for the sake of themselves and this great country.

Many people died so that we would not have to carry ID cards. I will not dishonor them by giving in like a subhuman.

And neither should you.

Icelanders: Get Mad and Get Even!

Monday, November 3rd, 2008 by Irdial 1DnwFLXczVZV8kLJbMYoheUrpqHesjxrSi

Gordon Brown has made his biggest mistake ever.

He has branded Iceland a terrorist nation, causing all transfers of money in and out of that country to dry up:

LONDON — No one disputes that Iceland’s economic troubles are largely the country’s own fault. But there may be more to the story, at least in the view of Iceland’s government, its citizens and even some outsiders. As grave as their situation already was, they say, Britain — their old friend, NATO ally and trading partner — made it immeasurably worse.

The troubles between the countries began three weeks ago when Britain took the extraordinary step of using its 2001 antiterrorism laws to freeze the British assets of a failing Icelandic bank. That appeared to brand Iceland a terrorist state.

“I must admit that I was absolutely appalled,” the Icelandic foreign minister, Ingibjorg Solrun Gisladottir, said in an interview, describing her horror at opening the British treasury department’s home page at the time and finding Iceland on a list of terrorist entities with Al Qaeda, Sudan and North Korea, among others.

In a volatile economic climate, in which appearance matters almost as much as reality, being associated with terrorism is not a good thing.

“The immediate effect was to trigger an almost complete freeze on any banking transactions between Iceland and abroad,” said Jon Danielsson, an economist at the London School of Economics. “When you’re labeled a terrorist, nobody does business with you.”

The Icelandic prime minister, Geir H. Haarde, accused Britain of “bullying a small neighbor” and said the action was “very out of proportion.” In a recent speech in Beijing, Sir Howard Davies, a former deputy governor of the Bank of England and now the director of the London School of Economics, said that Britain had used a “beggar thy neighbor” approach to Iceland.

[...]

New York Times

Amazing.

Firstly, when someone stabs you in the face with a knife, you do not sit down and say that you ‘absolutely appalled’. You’ve got to get mad. You have to say, “I am a human being my life has value!”

Gordon Brown and Alister Darling have committed a crime by falsely listing that bank as a terrorist organization and freezing their assets. The entire Icelandic economy is suffering because of this action.

By deliberately bringing this calamity on the people of Iceland, they have comitted the crime of Collective Punishment:

Collective punishment is the punishment of a group of people as a result of the behaviour of one or more other individuals or groups. The punished group may often have no direct association with the other individuals or groups, or direct control over their actions. In times of war and armed conflict, collective punishment has resulted in atrocities, and is a violation of the laws of war and the Geneva Conventions. Historically, occupying powers have used collective punishment to retaliate against and deter attacks on their forces by resistance movements (e.g. by destroying whole villages where attacks have taken place).

[...]

The term is also used to describe confiscation of assets connected with drug use and trafficking or otherwise connected with organized crime in the United States[citation needed]. More recently the U.S. Army has been accused of practicing collective punishment in Iraq [4].

[...]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collective_punishment

Now.

If I were a member of the Icelandic government, I would put out a statement thusly:

“Gordon Brown and his Chancellor Aliester Darling have falsely and maliciously listed one of our banks as a terrorist organization in order to freeze the assets of that bank. This action has caused all money transfers in and out of Iceland to stop, causing the entire country to be damaged and the entire Icelendic population to suffer.

This is a clear violation of international law. By taking this action, Gordon Brown and Mr. Darling have instituted a Collective Punishment against the Icelandic people in violation of international law.

From today, we are taking into account every Euro of damage done to our economy as a result of this action. We are brining a lawsuit against Mr. Brown and Mr. Darling which is scheduled to be heard in the Hague.

We will not be falsely labeled as terrorists by anyone, and we will not have our economy destroyed and our citizens harmed by the actions of these reckless and lawless men.”

Its one thing to murder and abuse uneducated middle easterners; doing this sort of thing to Europeans is quite another. Or at least, thats the way it SHOULD be, and Iceland would most certainly win such a legal action.

It would mean that the nation of Iceland would be in line for huge reparations and compensation. It would be enough to not only compensate every Icelander, but to pay back the deposits of the British who had kept money with their banks (should they feel generous enough to return the money).

THAT ‘my friends’, is how you respond to such a violent, absurd and insulting action.

If the government of Iceland doesn’t have the balls to do it, the 73,596 people who have signed the petition at this site:

http://www.indefence.is/?pageid=545

Should mount a class action lawsuit, starting by paying €100 each into a fund to hire a crack team of lawyers to get the job done.

What you DO NOT do, put pictures of yourself up onto the internet, protest, demonstrate or do anything like that, thinking that that is going to solve anything. Its good for PR, but little else. Gordon Brown is a man who would mass murder millions of Iraqis for money. Any protest you could possibly launch would not be as great as the demonstration against the Iraq invasion in Britain, which achieved absolutely nothing. You know all about this since you read BLOGDIAL:

[...]

We had this debate on BLOGDIAL before the historic march organized by StopWar. Demonstrations are pointless because they do not achieve their ends, and the people who go on them are nothing more than stupid monkeys; the people who organize them are actually working for the enemy. Time and time again we have said this, (and other stuff) and had it proved, sadly.

[...]

http://irdial.com/blogdial/?p=739

The only way to attack these people (in this case) is through the international law. A humiliating judgement against Gordon Brown and Darling, along with an astronomical reparations and compensation bill would be pure justice for the Icelandic people, a warning that ‘terrorism’ laws are now discredited and woe betide anyone who uses them incorrectly, or even has them on their statues.

Finally, perhaps to energize the Icelandic people, the magical Björk could do a cover of the Slits’s ‘Number One Enemy’!!!

Gordon Brown admits, “we cannot keep your data safe….EVER”

Sunday, November 2nd, 2008 by Irdial 1DnwFLXczVZV8kLJbMYoheUrpqHesjxrSi

Gordon Brown says government cannot ensure data safety

Gordon Brown has made a frank admission that government cannot promise the safety of personal data entrusted by the public.

Hopefully this ‘frank admission’ is the precursor to the complete rollback of all the doomed IT / ID projects this insane government has embarked and wasted money on.

The Prime Minister was speaking hours after it emerged that a memory stick containing the passwords to a government website used submit online tax returns had been lost.

Speaking on the second day of his trip to the Gulf, the Prime Minister said it was caused by "mistakes" which were “human”.

It is a human error when the wrong medicine or too much of the right medicine is injected in a hospital. When this happens, people are compensated via lawsuits. There is an avenue of redress.

When data leaks happen, there is nothing the government offers, other than ‘sorry it was not our fault’.

He also sought to clear government officials of blame, stressing that a private company – Atos Origin, a computer management firm – had accepted responsibility for the loss.

The Department for Work and Pensions was forced to shut down the Gateway service, which is used by consumers to pay parking tickets and fill in tax returns after the data, on a memory stick found outside a pub.

The loss by Atos Origin, which won a five-year £46.7million contract to manage the Government Gateway in 2006, was reported to the Government last week. The memory stick was found outside the Orbital Pub in Cannock and handed in to a Sunday newspaper.

We have heard all this before. What happened to the memory stick BEFORE it was turned over to the newspaper. Who has a copy of it? Was it encrypted so that whoever picked it up could not read it?

Mr Brown said this was completely unacceptable, and warned that the company would be punished.

They could terminate the contract for all the good it will do; once the genie is out of the bottle, it is OUT. We have written about this time and time again. No sanction, no punishment, no words can undo the harm that is done by a leak like this. In the case of credit card details and passwords, those can be changed, even if there are millions of numbers to be cancelled and re-issued. If the data however is the fingerprints and DNA of living people, those CANNOT be replaced; that private data escaped represents a violation on unprecedented scales, and as we keep saying, it WILL HAPPEN no matter what precautions you take to protect the systems that hold the information.

Which comes to another point; why on earth do these sensitive computers have USB slots and DVD burners? SURELY after all the leaks and missing discs, all USB ports should be pulled and DVD burners removed. In a networked environment there is no need for those means of moving data….but I digress, and of course, if any of these computers is on the internetz, remote access by bad guys is guaranteed.

“I think that the company responsible has accepted responsibility and it is a private company. I think action will be taken by the Department of Work and Pensions. It’s not acceptable behaviour,” he told ITV News. He said that the company could expect “changes to the contract.”

I think you are a squint eyed, pig faced liar and mass murderer.
I think any action taken by the Department of Work and Pensions will not matter a single bit, you clod.
I think changes to the ATOS contract are a total irrelevance, and insulting as a sanction, even to the most thick person.
I think the jig is up you scum. People are finally waking up to this total insanity, and you are not going to be able to roll out your ID schemes.

The Government has faced repeated embarrassments over lost data, with 277 data breaches reported since 25 million child benefit records went missing nearly a year ago. Only last week James Purnell, the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, was forced to apologise for leaving papers on a train. Mr Brown appeared to accept data loss in future was inevitable.

Data loss in the future is only inevitable if you allow yourself to be put onto these systems. If you allow your fingerprints to be taken, your fingerprints will be released to the public. If you allow your DNA to be taken, your DNA will be released to the public. If you allow your doctor to upload your information to the Spine, your medical records will be released to the public.

Once again, for all those thick morons who trot out the, “we already have credit cards and loyalty cards, so what’s the difference” line, the difference is that if your data is released by a credit card, you can be compensated. The same goes for all of your interactions with private companies, and if any company does not guarantee your privacy, you should shun them, full stop.

Also, the State is not the same as a private corporation with whom you deal willingly. You should already know all of this.

“It is important to recognise we cannot promise that every single item of information will always be safe because mistakes are made by human beings. Mistakes are made in the transportation, if you like in the communication, of information.”

[...]

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/politics/article5065795.ece

Therefore, it is important to recognise that sensitive information should never be hoarded in centralized databases by compulsion of the State. The State should abandon all IT projects that collect personal data, all data sharing should be stopped, and each citizen should have the right to demand that data on him is deleted should he so wish.

The ContactPoint database listing all 11 million children in Britain should be scrapped immediately in the light of these comments by Gordon Brown.

He has admitted that he cannot keep children safe from paedophiles who would inevitably (by his own admission) gain access to ContactPoint data, making that database nothing more than a catalogue for paedophiles. We have described how this would happen before.

ContactPoint. The database that is:

MUST BE ABANDONED RIGHT NOW.

Anyone who is for ContactPoint, or any of these insane IT / ID projects simply does not know what they are talking about. All of them should be scrapped. If they are not scrapped, you should do everything you can to stay out of them, starting by refusing to take the ID card.

Government can run perfectly well without any of it, and none of it is of any benefit to the public.