a short political story

The Snow Cleaner


Obama throws money to CIA to fund terrorists so the Army can go catch em

Al Qaeda affiliate says his group was armed and assisted by U.S., Britain and Israel

Steve Watson
Friday, Feb 26th, 2010

The leader of a Pakistan based terrorist organisation closely affiliated with Al Qaeda has detailed how his group benefited from extensive political and financial support from the CIA in return for continued attacks against the government, the people and the infrastructure of Iran.

Abdolmalek Rigi, the leader of the Pakistan-based Jundullah terrorist organization was captured earlier this week by Iranian security officials in the south of the country.

Rigi was tracked by Iranian intelligence when he boarded a flight from Dubai to Kyrgyzstan on Tuesday.

According to officials, Rigi was using a forged Afghan passport which was issued to him by the U.S. government.

The 31-year-old terror leader issued a statement on Iranian state TV yesterday, during which he alleged that he had made a pact with the U.S. for safe haven and unlimited military aid to pursue terrorist activities against the Iranian government.

“They said they would cooperate with us and will give me military equipment, arms and machine guns. They also promised to give us a base along the border with Afghanistan next to Iran,” Rigi said.

“They [were] prepared to give [us] training and/or any assistance that [we] would require, in terms of telecommunications security and procedures as well as other support, the Americans said they would be willing to provide it at an extensive level,” he added.

Rigi indicated that the relationship with U.S. intelligence continued through the election of Barack Obama and up to the present day.

Iranian officials paraded Rigi before the press and presented a photo they claim showed the terrorist leader entering a U.S. base in Afghanistan one day before his arrest.

The Pentagon has strenuously denied having any links to the Jundullah, describing the revelations as “fabrications” and “propaganda” concocted by Iranian officials.

Iran’s intelligence minister, Heydar Moslehi also alleged that Rigi had met the then Nato secretary-general, Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, in Afghanistan in 2008, and had visited European countries.

Moslehi said agents had tracked Rigi’s movements for five months, calling his arrest “a great defeat for the US and UK”.

Of course, you will not hear about this story in the controlled U.S. media, so it is left to Russia Today broadcasters, with the help of investigative journalist and author Webster Tarpley to break down the story:

Iran has repeatedly claimed that Jundullah, which has carried out scores of bombings against the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, killing hundreds of civilians in the process, is backed directly by Pakistan, Britain and Israel, as well as America.

So why should we give any credence to a captured terrorist who has undergone hours of interrogation from Iranian officials?

Because his confession backs up already substantial evidence that the the Jundullah group, in addition to other anti-Iranian terrorist groups, have enjoyed fruitful relationships with western intelligence.

“After Obama was elected, the Americans contacted us and they met me in Pakistan.They met us after clashes with my group around March 17 in (the southeastern city of) Zahedan, and he (the US operative) said that Americans had requested a meeting.”

“I said we didn’t have any time for a meeting and if we do help them they should promise to give us aid. They said they would cooperate with us and will give me military equipment, arms and machine guns. They also promised to give us a base along the border with Afghanistan next to Iran.”

“They asked to meet me and we said where should we meet you and he said in Dubai. We sent someone to Dubai and we told a person to ask a place for myself in Afghanistan from the area near the operations and they complied that they would sort out the problem for us and they will find Mr. Rigi a base and guarantee his own security in Afghanistan or in any of the countries adjacent to Iran so that he can carry on his operations.

“They told me that in Kyrgyzstan they have a base called Manas near Bishkek, and that a high-ranking person was coming to meet me and that if such high-ranking people come to the United Arab Emirates, they may be observed by intelligence people but in a place like Bishkek this high-ranking American person could come and we could reach an agreement on making personal contacts. But after the last major operation we took part in, they said that they wanted to meet with us.

“The Americans said Iran was going its own way and they said our problem at the present is Iran not al-Qaeda and not the Taliban, but the main problem is Iran. We don’t have a military plan against Iran. Attacking Iran is very difficult for us (the US). The CIA is very particular about you and is prepared to do anything for you because our government has reached the conclusion that there was nothing Americans could do about Iran and only I could take care of the operations for them.

“One of the CIA officers said that it was too difficult for us to attack Iran militarily, but we plan to give aid and support to all anti-Iran groups that have the capability to wage war and create difficulty for the Iranian (Islamic) system. They reached the conclusion that your organization has the power to create difficulties for the Islamic Republic and they are prepared to give you training and/or any assistance that you would require, in terms of telecommunications security and procedures as well as other support, the Americans said they would be willing to provide it at an extensive level.”

FOX NEWS says: Jesus only saves HALF of people

FOX and ZONDERVAN (makers if the NIV) are both owned by mogul Rupert Murdock

Over 60,000 words missing* from the original manuscripts to "correct" new versions.

*(missing! this does not include diluted phrases or misinterpretations to achieve a new copyright status to bring it out of public domain status)

You don't get saved with the NIV bible. TOO FUNNY!

non-inspired version (NIV) deletion list


Wescott and Hort are the two men, who in the late 1800's popularized the two texts, the Sinaiticus and the Vaticanus.

The two texts have become known as the minority manuscripts because of the way they stand apart from the vast majority of manuscript evidence, known as the Textus Receptus.

The letters of the two men, Wescott and Hort, clearly show us that one leaned toward Rome and the Vatican to the point of trusting in transubstantiation ( a Roman Catholic Dogma), and the other was friends with Darwin and the yearning for 'naturalistic' explanations for the origin of species.

So, two splits, three branches. One is truth, the others have more sway and/or more money.

In much the same way as the early dinosaur bone diggers could promote their careers with a great find, Wescott and Hort would propel themselves to the fore by promoting their minority manuscripts as being older and therefore 'more accurate'.

As a matter of fact, the NIV is the version that the Jehovahs Witnesses carry going door to door (they just might not admit it.)

As a matter of fact: The Codex Vaticanus, AND Codex Sinaiticus are riddled with ancient corrections, as if a monk of inferior intelligence had begged to be allowed to work in transcription and then made many errors that needed correction.

lol... "Hey Brother! Can I work on the scripts too?" he pleads... "Yes brother Dufus, get out your medieval crayons after nap time."

Just thought I would 'share' this lovely tidbit with my paulyhart.tk fans.

Leonard Ravenhill - Church Rebuke


ptbuzz@mail-list.com on behalf of PT Shamrock (ptshamrock@ptshamrock.com)
You may not know this sender.Mark as safe|
Mark as junk
Sent: Sat 2/13/10 5:35 PM
To: [edit]

Mid February 2010 Newsletter

"Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from
mediocre minds."
- Albert Einstein

In this issue:

* Verichip is now called PositiveID! Roll up your sleeve for the
implantable human microchip, it's now Positive?
* Scary Stuff - Colorado cops get first ID eye-scanners
* Breaking News! Airline passengers have 'no right' to refuse naked
body scanners
* Future police: Meet the UK's armed robot drones
* ID minister promises virtual immortality for all Britons
* Good News - Travellers get more for their money in Spain
* Entire UK will be on ID database sometime in next 3 millennia
* Bad News - EU Threatens Sweden For Not Storing Private E Mails
* Flash mob protests in Trafalgar Square
* Food for thought - The True State of the Union: We Have No Rights
* Police State - Police want backdoor to Web users' private
* Horror Stories - Council snoopers question five-year-olds on home life
* The District of Criminals - For Government, Let the Good Times Roll
* UN agency calls for global cyberwarfare treaty, 'driver's license' for
Web users
* Hot Tips
* Advisory
* ACLU: Miami Beach cops arrest people for recording police misconduct
* Dumbing Down - Israeli Scientists Show DNA Evidence Can be Fabricated
* Dumb signs - Gun Photos are "Offensive" at Walgreens
* Dumb facts - Manchester ID staff suffer isolation as new dawn fades
* Dumb criminal acts - Terrorists 'plan attack on Britain with bombs INSIDE
their bodies' to foil new airport scanners
* Angry Man Runs Naked Through Phoenix Airport
* Cannon Fodder - Internet companies voice alarm over Italian law
* DNA pioneer lambasts government database policy
* Oz/Nzed corner
* Tor software updated after hackers crack into systems
* Red Hot Product
* Directgov battles terrorism with report-a-website page
* Shamrock's Missive
* Quotes
* Tid Bits - 28 Year Old Business Harrassed For Cutting Cedar Trees on
Private Property
* More Tid Bits - Traveling With Laptops Could Get Tougher
* Even More Tid Bits - Retailers fooled by fake and borrowed IDs
* Bits n bobs - Student Arrested For Doodling
* More Bits N bobs - Australia to introduce body scanners after failed
US attack
* Disturbing facts- The government has your baby's DNA
* Letters To The Editor
* Quote of the month!
* PT Shamrock's Exclusive Member's Site!

*** Verichip is now called PositiveID! Roll up your sleeve for the
implantable human microchip, it's now Positive?
- Greg Nikolettos, OpEdNews

As sure as the sun rises, so Verichip keeps spawning and shape
shifting to gain market acceptance as people from across the globe
unite and reject the IBM seed-funded, Raytheon-manufactured Human
Implantable microchip company.

To "mark' a new year, Verichip is now called PositiveID! If you have
followed this company's progress as we have and cited the damning
evidence showcasing a casual link between microchipping and cancer,
Verichip is certainly not positive. But in this world of semantics
and double speak, no doubt a CEO meeting along with other top execs
decided that throwing the word "Positive" in the title would make
Alzheimer patients who get microchipped without their consent less
hesitant as their sleeve was rolled up in the name of "wander
protection'. "Was that a needle?" asks the patient? "No! it was a
mosquito bite, you have Alzheimer's, remember?"

What has changed in 2010?

Well, Verichip/PositiveID has a new marketing and media relations
company! Just as all actors in Hollywood require an agent to handle
their image as they enter the market, so Verichip/PositiveID has
decided to do the same.

The company taking over Verichips/PositiveID media relations and
corporate communications is Gibraltar. A company who has close ties
with the Clinton administration, expertise in biotech, energy and of
course as a company who has excellent inroads into government,
Gibraltar even has the mandatory Washington office!

Why this recent appointment?

Verichip/PositiveID has been pummeled on the NASDAQ, having been
delisted in March 2009, but staging a comeback to have their stock
regain NASDAQ Compliance in October 2009. Verichip/PositiveID stock
has been crushed from a high of just over $10 down to a humiliating
low of $0.24 cents.

Why this backlash? It's a human implantable microchip and that does
not sit well with the Ma and Pa investor. Who in their right mind
invests in a company whose product causes tumors? Who in their right
mind invests in a company that microchips Alzheimer patients without
their consent? As Verichip/PositiveID's stock price today indicates,
not many individuals and certainly not investment companies who are
minimizing risk in the current economy.

Regardless of what happens on the stock market, the fact is Verichip
is not going away. Why? Because their seed funding originates from
the information giant IBM who has over 407,000 employees worldwide.
Nothing like having a Big Blue Sugar Daddy watching over you in this
financial climate, especially one that writes off a $60 million dollar
loan to ensure the human microchipping agenda is in place for "future'
generations. $60 million is chickenfeed to a company who turns over
100 billion US dollars a year. Yes sir, the IBM Hollerith Machine
Punch Card system was very profitable in WWII, cleverly "leased" to
the Nazi regime to create enabling technologies to identify and
catalog non-compliant peoples.

IBM custom-designed and constantly updated the Hollerith Machine using
the punch-card system and thus Hitler was able to automate his
persecution of the undesirables. But let's remember Hitlers Mantra
"Jews are evil, Negros are despicable, Gypsies simply could not stay
put, wandering all over the place and homosexuals, well we all know
what filthy acts they get up to!! Hitlers remedy? Zyklon B, the
brand name of the cyanide-based pesticide used in the Holocaust gas

The Zyklon B patents were owned by a little company called IG Farben
who was also in bed with John D. Rockefeller's United States based
Standard Oil Co. during the reign of the Third Reich, but that's
another story altogether.

Agfa, BASF, and Bayer continue today after the buyout of IG Faben
Western Assets, showing that you can't keep a good criminal company
down. But let's remember, we all need to be more forgiving as BASF
manufactured excellent magnetic recording cassette tapes in the
80s-90s as acid house music merged and fused into techno.

A crash course in Verichip/PositiveID! Buckle Up!

Verichip/PositiveID is manufactured by Raytheon Microelectronics
Espana/ECLAN from Tomahawk Missile fame thus creating a synergy
between the fifth largest defense government contractor and the human
implantable microchip.

Story continues at

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Scary Stuff

Colorado cops get first ID eye-scanners
Arapahoe wins federal grant for biometric ID system
- by Dave Young KDVR Denver

Arapahoe County will become the first law enforcement agency in
Colorado to begin identifying criminals, missing children and seniors
using biometric analysis of the human iris.

A technician from the software and hardware developer demonstrated how
their device analyzes the iris, which has 235 identifying points of
reference, versus a fingerprint's 65.

"Fingerprints change but irises stay stable throughout your life,"
said Patricia Lawton of Biometric Intelligence and Identifying
Technologies, "Which is why it's a great biometric to identify
somebody with."

Lawton helped develop this new technology application.

She said the iris is 12 times more reliable for identification than a

A National Sheriff's Association technology grant allows Arapahoe
County to be first in the state to apply it to law enforcement.

A deputy helped us demonstrate how it works while Lawton scanned his

"He won't tell us who he is," she said as the deputy held a digital
scanner in front of his face and images of his two eyes revealed on a
laptop computer screen.

"The camera's taking a digital photograph of his eyes, the saturation
the focus the quality the camera's talking to him telling him whether
or not he's in range," Lawton said as on-screen graphics illustrated
each item she described.

"In six seconds the information has come back that this is who he is,"
she said as a photo image of the deputy appeared on the screen.

The developers say in government studies so far, with more than two
million cross matches, there's never been a false positive with their

After initial testing, Arapahoe County will share the technology with
other law enforcement agencies across the state who will eventually
share criminal and inmate ID records.

"Particularly after we've done it for a period of time after a year,"
said Arapahoe Sheriff Grayson Robinson, "We will have upwards of
20-thousand inputs into this database."

Robinson said it will also be used to help track missing kids and
seniors who've been registered by family members.

"We see this as the future," said developer Lawton, "This will be the
first step when you come in, we'll match your iris to your records and
your records will come up. "

A record that's impossible to fake.
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*** Breaking News!

Airline passengers have 'no right' to refuse naked body scanners
- London Guardian

Airline passengers will have no right to refuse to go through a
full-body search scanner when the devices are introduced at Heathrow
airport next week, ministers have confirmed.

The option of having a full-body pat-down search instead, offered to
passengers at US airports, will not be available despite warnings from
the government's Equality and Human Rights Commission that the
scanners, which reveal naked bodies, breach privacy rules under the
Human Rights Act.

The transport minister Paul Clark told MPs a random selection of
passengers would go through the new scanners at UK airports. The
machines' introduction would be followed later this year by extra
"trace" scanners, which can detect liquid explosives. A draft code of
practice covering privacy and health issues is being discussed in

Clark dealt with concerns raised by the Commons home affairs select
committee about the ability of airports abroad to upgrade their
security to similar levels by indicating that extra support and help
was under discussion.

Lord West, the counter-terrorism minister, told the MPs the government
had firmly ruled out the introduction of "religious or ethnic
profiling" into transport security. Instead, he said, airport
security staff were being trained in "behavioural profiling", which
meant spotting passengers who had paid cash, were travelling with only
a book for luggage on a long-haul flight or were behaving erratically
at the airport.
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*** Future police: Meet the UK's armed robot drones -

Police forces all over the UK will soon be able to draw on unmanned
aircraft from a national fleet, according to Home Office plans. Last
month it was revealed that modified military aircraft drones will
carry out surveillance on everyone from protesters and antisocial
motorists to fly-tippers, and will be in place in time for the 2012

Surveillance is only the start, however. Military drones quickly
moved from reconnaissance to strike, and if the British police follow
suit, their drones could be armed -- but with non-lethal weapons
rather than Hellfire missiles.

The flying robot fleet will range from miniature tactical craft such
as the miniature AirRobot being tested by Essex police, to BAE
System's new HERTI drone as flown in Afghanistan. The drones are
cheaper than police helicopters -- some of which will be retired --
and are as wide as 12m in the case of HERTI.

Watching events on the ground without being able to act is
frustrating. Targets often got away before an unarmed drone could
summon assistance. In fact, in 2000 it was reported that an airborne
drone spotted Osama bin Laden but could do nothing but watch him
escape. So the RAF has been carrying out missions in Afghanistan with
missile-armed Reapers since 2007. From the ground these just look
like regular aircraft.

The police have already had a similar experience with CCTV. As well
as observing, some of these are now equipped with speakers. Pioneered
in Middleborough, the talking CCTV allows an operator to tell off
anyone engaging in vandalism, graffiti or littering.

Unmanned aircraft can also be fitted with speakers, such as the Long
Range Acoustic Device (LRAD), which could not only warn fly tippers
that they were breaking the law but also be loud enough to drive them

The LRAD is a highly directional speaker made of a flat array of
piezoelectric transducers, producing intense beam of sound in a
30-degree cone. It can be used as a loudhailer, or deafen the target
with a jarring, discordant noise. Some ships now carry LRAD as an
anti-pirate measure: It was used to drive off an attack on the
Seabourn Spirit off Somalia in 2005.

LRAD makers American Technology prefer to call its product a device
rather than a weapon, and use terms such as "deterrent tones" and
"influencing behaviour." Police in the US have already adopted a
vehicle-mounted LRAD for crowd control, breaking up protests at the
G20 summit in Pittsburgh last year, although there have been warnings
about the risk of hearing damage.

The LRAD has been tested on the Austrian S-100 unmanned helicopter,
and the technology is ready if there is a police requirement.

But rather than just driving them away, a police drone should be able
to stop fleeing criminals in their tracks. Helicopters already mount
powerful searchlights, and strobe lighting capabilities can turn such
systems into effective nonlethal weapons. High-intensity strobes can
cause dizziness, disorientation and loss of balance making it
virtually impossible to run away.

This effect was first harnessed in the "Photic Driver" made by British
company Allen International in 1973. However, it has taken
improvement in lighting technology (such as fast-switching Xenon
lights) and an understanding of the physiology involved to make such
weapons practical.

A "light based personnel immobilisation device" developed by Peak Beam
Systems Inc has been successfully tested by the US military, and work
to mount it on an unmanned helicopter in the States is under way.

This sort of light would be too dangerous for a manned aircraft
because of the crew being affected. But an unmanned "strober" could
be a literal crime stopper, and something we could see deployed within
the next couple of years.

Even the smallest drones could be used for tactical police operations.
As far back as 1972 the Home Office looked at model aircraft as an
alternative to rubber bullets, literally flying them into rioters to
knock them off their feet.

French company Tecknisolar Seni has demonstrated a portable drone
armed with a double-barrelled 44mm Flash-Ball gun. Used by French
special police units, the one-kilo Flash-Ball resembles a large
calibre handgun and fires non-lethal rounds, including tear gas and
rubber impact rounds to bring down a suspect without permanent damage
-- "the same effect as the punch of a champion boxer," claim makers

However, last year there were questions over the use of Flash-Ball
rounds by French police. Like other impact rounds, the Flash-Ball is
meant to be aimed at the body -- firing from a remote, flying platform
is likely to increase the risk of head injury.

Another option is the taser. Taser stun guns are now so light (about
150 grams) that they could be mounted on the smaller drones. Antoine
di Zazzo, head of SMP Technologies, which distributes tasers in
France, says the company is fitting one to a small quad-rotor iDrone
(another quad-rotor toy helicopter), which some have called a "flying

Robots are already the preferred way of approaching possible bombs
without putting officers lives at risk. In the future, police may
prefer to deal with potentially dangerous suspects the same way,
tackling them remotely using a taser if the situation requires it.

But tasers are controversial. In 2008 the Met rejected government
plans for a wider issue of tasers to non-specialist officers because
of the fear they could cause, and there have been numerous complaints
of abuse. For some, the arrival of a hovering law-enforcement drone
with a video eyes and a 50,000-volt taser at the ready might be a
police technology too far.

Which leads Wired to ask you for your thoughts: Are tasers and armed
robot drones the ideal next step for British law enforcement, or will
it just make our police officers less capable of dealing with serious
problems when they're forced to intervene in person?
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*** ID minister promises virtual immortality for all Britons
National ID register will hold the quick and the dead
- The Register

The government has guaranteed virtual immortality for every British
citizen - as long as they join the National Identity Register.

In a Commons answer yesterday ID card minister Meg Hillier confirmed
that once you're on the register, nothing will remove you - not even

She was answering a question from Francis Maude MP, who asked "whether
(a) biometric and (b) personal data of individuals stored on the
National Identity Register will be removed from the register if (i)
they die and (ii) they decide not to renew their identity card."

Hillier replied: "Information will be retained for as long as is
necessary, but only where it is consistent with the statutory purposes
set out in the Identity Cards Act 2006."

Which puts the time limit firmly on a par with a piece of string.
Luckily, Hillier explained what this means:

"For example, the Identity Cards Act 2006 provides that the date of
death may be held on the National Identity Register. This information
may be required to help prevent an individual's identity being stolen
after death."

A quick skim of the legislation itself doesn't seem to throw up any
examples of when someone might be expunged from the National Identity
Register; but considering that it could take as long as 3,342 years
for the government to shoehorn the entire UK population onto the
database, most of us might only ever be dead entries.
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Good News

Travellers get more for their money in Spain Cost-conscious travellers
from the UK could return to Spain this summer for the best value
holidays, a new survey reveals.
- Telegrapg.co.uk

The fourth annual Holiday Money Report from Post Office Travel Money
says rocketing inflation has seen Turkey prices soar by 44 per cent in
a year, leaving the cost of a basketful of standard items in Spain
costing barely half the comparable price in Turkey.

The list of top 10 cheapest destinations for British travellers
converting pounds into local currency is headed by Hungary, followed
by Thailand, Bulgaria, Spain, Indonesia, Czech Republic, Kenya,
Malaysia, Japan and Croatia.

The report also warns that the eurozone countries, which saw holiday
demand crash in 2009 as the Euro soared in value, are fighting back.
They are helped by the fact that many think the Euro is now
significantly overvalued.

The Post Office report says: "The eurozone, Europe's most unpopular
holiday club, have already resorted to discounting to redress the
impact of the strident Euro, but it will be interesting to see how
Spain, Greece and France, in particular, play their cards to reclaim

"A 30 per cent year on year price drop for tourist commodities shows
that Spain means business. While Hungary is again cheapest overall,
Bulgaria's Sunny Beach becomes the lowest priced beach resort."

The report warns the so-called 'Aldi effect' is about to hit travel;
as the distinctive style of the no-frills supermarket shopping reaches
the travel industry.

Consumers are expected to accelerate cost-cutting trends first seen in
2009, including out-of-season breaks, camping trips, budget
accommodation and all-inclusive packages.

City breaks are expected to do well, with rising demand for shorter

Cruising is also expected to sustain recent growth levels as "a good
option for holidaymakers who want to know exactly how much their trip
will cost in advance of travel".

Post Office Money reckons long-haul travel will be boosted by major
events in 2010, including the Winter Olympics in Vancouver, the World
Cup in South Africa and the opening of Universal Studios' Wizarding
World Of Harry Potter in Florida.

However, selling ski holidays in Canada this winter is far from easy,
because its dollar is 6 per cent stronger against the pound than a
year ago. The ski resort of Banff was named the most expensive of 14
surveyed in the annual Ski Resort Report.

The report thinks the Sunshine State will zoom up the popularity
stakes as Busch Gardens and Universal Orlando Resort open new
attractions to "make Florida the centre of the universe for theme park
fanatics, large and small".

British visitors can also expect good value for sterling in Mexico,
fighting back from the swine flu epidemic.

The same goes for Iceland, badly hit by global financial crisis, and
Egypt, where British visitors can expect to collect 14 per cent more
Egyptian pounds for their sterling than a year ago.

British visitors splashing the cash in New York could get an extra
bonus: The 2009 increase in the duty free allowance between the UK and
USA to GBP 340 means holidaymakers can bring back more gifts without
paying duty on them.

Both New York and Las Vegas are flooded with new accommodation,
suggesting lower prices in due course.

The shopping arcades of Dubai promise tasty bargains too: The value of
the UAS dirhan has sunk against sterling, giving British visitors some
13 per cent more money to spend than a year ago.

Says the survey: "Travel agencies have been inundated with the kind of
low-price offers more common in Red Sea resorts and Dubai, one of the
world's glitziest destinations, is looking its cheapest ever."

Sarah Munro at Post Office Money thinks Sri Lanka has also been great
value in the past six months, and could do even better in 2010.

"Sri Lanka is great value and a strong contender for budget long haul
business," says Munro.

However, currency restrictions mean visitors holding sterling can only
come home with a maximum 1,000 Sri Lankan rupees, worth less than GBP

If they take US dollars in cash or travellers cheques, they can take a
minimum $5,000 (GBP 3,102) with them when they leave - a much more
generous allowance.

And shoppers planning shorter forays into Europe will find Prague,
Warsaw and Budapest significantly cheaper than cities within the

Cheapflights.co.uk, a leading comparison site on flights, claims a
major move to Eastern Europe is evident.

Nadine Hallak, Cheapflights spokeswoman, says: "Brits are heading in
the direction of Eastern Europe en masse. Our viewer searches show a
massive increase in interest for the region, with Dubrovnik, Warsaw
and Prague seeing the biggest rises for flights.

"Last year showed a recessional shift towards long and mid-haul
destinations and as the downturn lingers, travellers are casting their
nets a bit closer to home where the offering in price is similar to
that of mid-haul."

At Lowcostholidays.com, which sold GBP 109 million worth of holidays
for 1.2 million passengers in 2009, chief executive Paul Evans says
hoteliers in Spain are often willing to slash room rates, while Egypt
hotels can offer "fabulous" value because they are dollar-based.

He has also seen a 120 per cent surge in bookings for all-inclusive
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*** Entire UK will be on ID database sometime in next 3 millennia
- Joe Fay

Applications to join the ID card register are running at 50 a day,
meaning the Labour government will achieve its aim of chipping the
entire population of these islands in somewhere between 136 and 3,342

Or never, if the Tories live up to their promises and kill the scheme
should they get into power.

In a series of Commons answers yesterday, ID minister Meg Hillier and
Alan Johnson, outlined progress on the scheme in perfect harmony.

In one answer, Alan Johnson said that between October 20 and January
16, over 3,700 applicants had enrolled or made an appointment for an
ID card.

In another answer, Hillier said that between October 20 and January
18, over 3,800 applicants had enrolled or made an appointment.

That's a jump of 100 applicants in just two days, suggesting a run
rate of 50 per day. A few quick sums, and that leads to the magical
figure of 3,342 years to register the current 61 million odd Britons.

Other nuggets from Hillier and Johnson included the news that so far,
2,700 ID cards had actually been issued to applicants up to January
18. Last week, Hillier revealed that up to January 14, 1,300 people
in Manchester has applied for cards.

It should be noted this doesn't take into account leap years,
population changes, or the chances of humanity being wiped out by an
unexpected asteroid. Neither does it take into account the fact that
at least some of the lucky so-and-sos who've applied for cards to date
are journalists looking to produce a quick first person story on "My
quest to be the first to file a story about my ID card applications."

Of course, the government could argue that the 50 a day run rate
should only be seen in relation to the population of Manchester, as
that is where the pilot scheme is currently running. Taking the
population of Greater Manchester as the base, we get a figure of 136
years before the population is recorded in the ID register.

This is much sooner than three and a half millennia, obviously, but
still probably a little longer than the government was hoping for.

The ace up the government's sleeve is that if you don't want an ID
card, you'll still end up in the ID database if you renew your
passport. Hillier said that at present, around 80 per cent of the UK
population apply for a passport over a ten year period. Which still
raises the question of how the government will get the other 20 per
cent - 12 million people - registered.

Hillier added that as of 2012 the government will require people
applying for a passport or ID card to submit ten fingerprints for
recording in the National ID database. However, she said that
"Where an individual is unable to record a full set of ten fingerprints
(eg due to an amputation), they will be able to register as many
fingerprints as it is possible for them to record". Excellent news.
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Bad News

EU Threatens Sweden For Not Storing Private E Mails
- The Local

The European Court of Justice has told Sweden that it must implement a
2006 measure requiring telecom operators to store information about
their customers' phone calls and emails.

The European Union directive, known as the Data Retention Directive,
was approved by Brussels in March 2006, but Sweden has yet to
implement the measure more than three years after its passage.

The Swedish government conceded to the court that it had not fulfilled
its obligations and assured the court that the EU directive 2006/24
can be expected to pass into Swedish law on April 1st 2010.

But hours after the verdict was made public, Justice Minister Beatrice
Ask told news agency TT that the government would not be preparing a
legislative proposal on the issue prior to this autumn's general

"The extent to which private companies should be forced to store
information about the activities of individuals is an important matter
of principle. That's exactly what this is about," Ask told news
agency TT.

The minister added that the government would at least wait until the
completion of an inquiry into police methods, the findings of which
are expected to come at the start of the summer.
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*** Flash mob protests in Trafalgar Square

Thousands of photographers flocked to central London to protest
against police stop-and-search tactics.

Trafalgar Square was lit up by an array of flash bulbs as part of a
demonstration to express rising tensions against police use of terror
laws to stop photographers taking pictures.

Freelance photographer and writer Marc Vallee, who helped organise the
protest with appeals on Twitter and Facebook, said frustrations with
police surrounded the scope of Section 44 of the Terrorism Act 2000.

Mr Vallee, 41, said he was "delighted" by the turnout, estimated at
more than 2,000 professional and amateur photographers.
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Food for thought

The True State of the Union: We Have No Rights Whatsoever
- Tom Mullen, Campaign For Liberty

It has been more than a week since President Obama gave his first
State of the Union address, and it has been analyzed from the left,
right, center, front, and back. Of course, the speech is really about
the performance of the federal government, particularly its wonderful
accomplishments under the leadership of the sitting president. This
is not peculiar to the Obama presidency. As far back as Jefferson,
presidents have used the Constitutionally-mandated stump speech to do
a little self-promotion, although what they promote has certainly
changed quite dramatically.

However, if the speech is supposed to reflect the accomplishments of
the federal government, then we should expect that it will contain
specifics about how that government has fulfilled its purpose, which
is, as we all know, to secure our rights. At least that's what our
founding document tells us. Therefore, if a president is going to do
a little bragging about what a great job he has done, it would be
logical to assume that we would hear particulars about the way in
which he has secured our rights. Logic, however, has little to do
with the machinations of leviathan.

In fairness, President Obama did begin his speech with a few remarks
about the actual state of our country, a state of economic
devastation and unending war. The fact that both of these afflictions
have been caused wholly by our federal government is something that
seems to have gone right by him, although he is not unique in that
respect, either. Having reminded us about how bad things are, he
dutifully lays as much blame as possible on the president that
preceded him (another time-honored tradition when succeeding a
president of the opposing party). He then moves right into trumpeting
his accomplishments.

The president explains how he hit the ground running after taking over
during the financial crisis, which began during the last year of the
Bush administration. He takes pride in the fact that he supported the
bank bailouts over the wishes of the American people, because when he
ran for president, he "promised he wouldn't just do what was popular,"
he would do "what was necessary." I don't remember that particular
campaign promise, although I do remember him promising to "preserve,
protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States" or
something to that effect. I suppose you can't expect him to keep them

President Obama justifies his first initiative as president as

"And if we had allowed the meltdown of the financial system,
unemployment might be double what it is today. More businesses would
certainly have closed. More homes would have surely been lost."

Perhaps the president is correct on this. Perhaps he is not.
However, there is one consideration that seems wholly missing from his
thought process. Do the people whose money was taken to "stabilize
the financial system" have any rights? By what authority was their
money confiscated, even if it were for "the good of all?" Majority

The president next goes on to extol the virtues of the first policy
that was wholly his own. He says that his administration "extended or
increased unemployment benefits for more than 18 million Americans;
made health insurance 65 percent cheaper for families who get their
coverage through COBRA; and passed 25 different tax cuts. As a result,
millions of Americans had more to spend on gas and food and other
necessities, all of which helped businesses keep more workers. And we
haven't raised income taxes by a single dime on a single person. Not
a single dime."

This seems to be a mixed message. The part about extending
unemployment benefits and making health insurance cheaper seems
like more wealth redistribution. However, he also mentions tax cuts
that saved jobs and let people keep more of their own money. One
might have been led to believe that he actually secured the right to
property here, at least for some of his constituents. Then came the
punch line.

"The plan that has made all of this possible, from the tax cuts to the
jobs, is the Recovery Act. That's right, the Recovery Act, also
known as the stimulus bill. Economists on the left and the right say
this bill has helped save jobs and avert disaster. But you don't have
to take their word for it. Talk to the small business in Phoenix that
will triple its workforce because of the Recovery Act. Talk to the
window manufacturer in Philadelphia who said he used to be skeptical
about the Recovery Act, until he had to add two more work shifts just
because of the business it created. Talk to the single teacher
raising two kids who was told by her principal in the last week of
school that because of the Recovery Act, she wouldn't be laid off
after all."

It is ironic that one of the examples that the president cites is a
window manufacturer. Those few lucid economists who are not among
those "on the left and the right" who agree wholeheartedly with the
stimulus bill certainly would have been unable to avoid recalling
Frederic Bastiat's "broken window fallacy." It is the absurd
reasoning that Bastiat exposes in his famous essay, "What is Seen and
What is Not Seen," that underlies the entire "stimulus" strategy.
Occasionally, this has been pointed out in public debates over these
programs. However, there is one question that has not even been asked
by President Obama's most vitriolic Republican opponents. Do the
people who were forced to fund the Recovery Act have rights?

President Obama implies that his wonderful largesse was accomplished
without taxing anyone, but this is absurd. It may be true that he has
not had a tax increase passed in the Congress, but the funding for the
Recovery Act can only come from one place. For the portion that was
borrowed by the U.S. government from other nations, that money will
eventually have to be paid back. The government only has one official
source of revenue, taxation. The fact that those who will pay the
taxes to underwrite the Recovery Act may not be born yet (although I
don't personally believe that Washington has that much time left)
doesn't change the fact that they will be forced to pay it back.

There is also an "unofficial" source of revenue for the government,
and that is inflation. For the portion of the Recovery Act debt that
the Federal Reserve merely monetizes, it is no less taxation than is
an appropriation from the Treasury. It is merely a more insidious
form of taxation, one that does not look its victim in the eye, but
rather steals from him silently through depreciation of a currency
that he is forced to use by the government. Whether by official or
unofficial means, there are individuals whose money will be
confiscated by the government so that others may keep their jobs.
Again, I ask, do those individuals have rights?

It should not go without mention exactly who these people are whose
jobs have been saved by the Recovery Act. According to the president,
"there are about two million Americans working right now who would
otherwise be unemployed. Two hundred thousand work in construction
and clean energy; 300,000 are teachers and other education workers.
Tens of thousands are cops, firefighters, correctional officers, first
responders. And we're on track to add another one and a half million
jobs to this total by the end of the year."

Is there anyone among these two million that are not government
employees? Perhaps the construction workers, although I'd bet they
are working solely on government contracts. In any case, they are all
on the receiving end of the taxation, necessitating that others must
be taken from in order for them to receive.

The whole concept of the government "saving or creating jobs" is one
whose injustice seems to elude everyone. That is probably because a
century of "progressive" ideas has completely befuddled us about what
a job really is. A job is a contract between a buyer and a seller.
The employee is the seller, who sells his services to an employer for
a mutually agreed upon price, his wages. This contract is one that
both parties enter into voluntarily. The employer purchases the
services because he is willing and able to do so. The employee sells
for precisely the same reasons. Each has a right not to enter into
the agreement, or to terminate it anytime he wishes.

However, when the government "saves or creates jobs," it completely
overrides the voluntary nature of this arrangement. If an employer is
no longer willing or able to continue to purchase the services of an
employee, the government has only one means at its disposal to change
that outcome: brute force. It uses this force to confiscate the
property of other people and thereby force them to purchase the
services of the employee, since the employer is no longer willing or
able to do so himself. The government claims it has saved a job, but
it certainly has not secured any rights. In fact, it has acted
counter to its purpose. It has destroyed the rights that it exists to

It is the same evil at work in the president's call for "health care
reform." As part of his plans to "improve the system," the government
will not only annihilate the right of property but liberty as well.
While taxing some in order to pay the doctor bills of others, the
federal government will ensure that no one can even conscientiously
object. Every American will be required to purchase insurance from
one of the government's pet corporations, regardless of whether they
want to or not. This amounts to a mandatory fee paid to the
government merely for the privilege of being alive. Once the right to
property is destroyed, the rights to liberty and even to life are
destroyed with them.

Without repeating the analysis for every program that the president
described, they all rest upon the same logic. There is some
mysterious entity called "society" whose needs outweigh the rights of
every individual that comprises it. In fact, it is apparent from the
president's speech (and those of most of his predecessors) that the
federal government recognizes no rights of any individual whatsoever.
Sadly, there are not many among the citizenry who think any
differently. So long as representatives have been democratically
elected, their power knows no bounds and recognizes no rights.

America was founded upon exactly the opposite idea. The reason that
the U.S Constitution guarantees every American "a Republican form of
government," rather than a democratic one, is precisely because its
framers believed that individual rights cannot be voted away. We
cannot vote ourselves a right to other people's property, not even to
save millions of jobs (although it is really not possible to do so
anyway). We cannot vote away another's liberty, not even to lower
health care costs for those who cannot afford it (although this will
not work either). This was the central principle upon which our
nation was founded, that we are endowed by our creator with
unalienable rights. A pure democracy does not recognize these rights.

Progressives promote the idea that "taxation without representation"
was the chief injustice that led to the American Revolution. This is
convenient to their agenda, because they go on to justify any tax
levied by a democratically-elected body on the grounds that those
being taxed were represented in that body.

Of course, this begs the question, "Why did the founders specifically
instruct Benjamin Franklin not to under any circumstances accept an
offer of representation for the colonies in the British parliament?"
Perhaps we should be so wise. Secession anyone?
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*** Police State

Police want backdoor to Web users' private data
- Declan McCullagh

Anyone with an e-mail account likely knows that police can peek inside
it if they have a paper search warrant.

But cybercrime investigators are frustrated by the speed of
traditional methods of faxing, mailing, or e-mailing companies these
documents. They're pushing for the creation of a national Web
interface linking police computers with those of Internet and e-mail
providers so requests can be sent and received electronically.

CNET has reviewed a survey scheduled to be released at a federal task
force meeting on Thursday, which says that law enforcement agencies
are virtually unanimous in calling for such an interface to be
created. Eighty-nine percent of police surveyed, it says, want to be
able to "exchange legal process requests and responses to legal
process" through an encrypted, police-only "nationwide computer

The survey, according to two people with knowledge of the situation,
is part of a broader push from law enforcement agencies to alter the
ground rules of online investigations. Other components include
renewed calls for laws requiring Internet companies to store data
about their users for up to five years and increased pressure on
companies to respond to police inquiries in hours instead of days.

But the most controversial element is probably the private Web
interface, which raises novel security and privacy concerns,
especially in the wake of a recent inspector general's report from the
Justice Department. The 289-page report detailed how the FBI obtained
Americans' telephone records by citing nonexistent emergencies and
simply asking for the data or writing phone numbers on a sticky note
rather than following procedures required by law.

Some companies already have police-only Web interfaces. Sprint Nextel
operates what it calls the L-Site, also known as the "legal compliance
secure Web portal." The company even has offered a course that "will
teach you how to create and track legal demands through L-site. Learn
to navigate and securely download requested records." Cox
Communications makes its price list for complying with police requests
public; a 30-day wiretap is $3,500.

The police survey is not exactly unbiased: its author is Frank
Kardasz, who is scheduled to present it at a meeting of the Online
Safety and Technology Working Group, organized by the U.S. Department
of Commerce. Kardasz, a sergeant in the Phoenix police department and
a project director of Arizona's Internet Crimes Against Children task
force, said in an e-mail exchange on Tuesday that he is still revising
the document and was unable to discuss it.

In an incendiary October 2009 essay, however, Kardasz wrote that
Internet service providers that do not keep records long enough "are
the unwitting facilitators of Internet crimes against children" and
called for new laws to "mandate data preservation and reporting." He
predicts that those companies will begin to face civil lawsuits
because of their "lethargic investigative process."

"It sounds very dangerous," says Lee Tien, an attorney with the
Electronic Frontier Foundation, referring to the police-only Web
interface. "Let's assume you set this sort of thing up. What does
that mean in terms of what the law enforcement officer be able to do?
Would they be able to fish through transactional information for
anyone? I don't understand how you create a system like this without

What police see in ISPs Kardasz's survey, based on questionnaires
completed by 100 police investigators, says that 61 percent of them
had their investigations harmed "because data was not retained" and
only 40 percent were satisfied with the timeliness of responses from
Internet providers.

"You can be very supportive of law enforcement investigations and at
the same time be very cognizant and supportive of the privacy rights
of our users." --Hemanshu Nigam, chief security officer, MySpace

It also says: "89 percent of investigators agreed that a nationwide
computer network should be established for the purpose of linking ISPs
with law enforcement agencies so that they may exchange legal process
requests and responses to legal process. Authorized users would
communicate through encrypted virtual private networks in order to
maintain the security of the data."

Some of the responses to other questions: "AT&T is very prompt." "Cox
Communications seems to be the worst." "Places like Yahoo can take a
month for basic subscriber info which is also a problem." "AT&T
Mobility does not keep a log at all." "MySpace give (sic) me the
quickest response and they have been very pro-police."

Hemanshu (Hemu) Nigam, MySpace's chief security officer, said in an
interview with CNET on Tuesday that: "You can be very supportive of
law enforcement investigations and at the same time be very cognizant
and supportive of the privacy rights of our users. Every time a legal
process comes in, whether it's a subpoena or a search order, we do a
legal review to make sure it's appropriate."

Nigam said that MySpace accepts law enforcement requests through
e-mail, fax, and postal mail, and that it has a 24-hour operations
center that tries to respond to requests soon after they've been
reviewed to make sure state and federal laws are being followed.
MySpace does not have a police-only Web interface, he said.

Creating a national police-only network would be problematic, Nigam
said. "I wish I knew the number of local police agencies in the
country, or even police officers in the country," he said. "Right
there that would tell you how difficult it would be to implement, even
though ideally it would be a good thing."

Another obstacle to creating a nation-wide Web interface for cops--one
wag has dubbed it "DragNet," and another "Porknet"--is that some of
its thousands of users could be infected by viruses and other malware.
Once an infected computer is hooked up to the national network, it
could leak confidential information about ongoing investigations.

Jim Harper, a policy analyst at the free-market Cato Institute, says
that he welcomes the idea of a police-only Web interface as long as
it's designed carefully. "A system like this should have strong
logins, should require that the request be documented fully, and
should produce statistical information so there can be strong
oversight," he says. "I think that's a good thing to have."
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Horror Stories

Council snoopers question five-year-olds on home life
- Mail Online

They're watching: The eating and television habits of children are
being monitored by councils!

Children as young as five are being told to fill in Big Brother-style
forms which let councils snoop on intimate details about their home

The questions - which have been attacked as exploitative - ask about
junk food, television habits, family time and even whether the
youngsters 'like themselves'.

Results are stored on a database, allowing families deemed to be 'at
risk' to be referred to social services or doctors.

Children are asked to colour in answers to questions such as how much
fruit they eat each day compared to crisps and fizzy drinks.

Hundreds of the 'lifestyle' quizzes, which are backed by the
Department of Health, have been handed out in an attempt to build a
picture of the health and wellbeing of individual households.

But privacy campaigners last night condemned the forms. Alex Deane,
of Big Brother Watch, described it as 'an unbelievable intrusion into
private life'.

He said: 'The state doesn't bring up children, parents do. There is
an important distinction between teaching and nannying - or even
bullying - and this steps way over the mark.'

The lifestyle quizzes were piloted in Erewash, Derbyshire, where
children filled in the forms at 'healthy living' after-school clubs,
to which parents are invited. Although the survey was not compulsory,
pupils were strongly encouraged to fill it in.

The forms will now be sent out to 200 schools across the county and
other councils are monitoring the scheme closely.

Daniella Yeo, of Erewash council, said the after-school clubs were
very popular and that the questions followed guidelines set by NICE,
the NHS's regulatory body.

She added: 'They will help us target families at risk of obesity. We
can then encourage parents to attend sessions with social services or

Other questions for five-year-olds include whether they eat breakfast,
how much water they drink and how they get to school.

They are also asked 'how much to do like yourself?' - and told to
tick a thumbs-up or thumbs- down sign that matches how they feel.

Seven-year-olds are being given an even more detailed quiz in which
they say exactly how many hours they spend with their family, watching
television and playing computer games.

Civil liberties campaigner Josie Appleton, of the Manifesto Club,
said: 'Councils and schools should concentrate on providing everyone
with a good education.

'But they should keep their noses out of children's lunchboxes and
away from the family dinner table.'

Shamrock's comment: Train and brainwash them young so in the future
there's no resistance!
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*** The District of Criminals

For Government, Let the Good Times Roll The Great Recession has
practically been a boom, if you have a government job.
- Rich Lowry

For most Americans, the Great Recession has been an occasion to hold
on for dear life. For public employees, it's been an occasion to let
the good times roll.

The percentage of federal civil servants making more than $100,000 a
year jumped from 14 percent to 19 percent during the first year and a
half of the recession, according to USA Today. At the beginning of
the downturn, the Transportation Department had one person making
$170,000 or more a year; now it has 1,690 making that.

The New York Times reports that state and local governments have added
a net 110,000 jobs since the beginning of the recession, while the
private sector has lost 6.9 million. The gap between total
compensation of public and private workers has only widened during the
downturn, according to USA Today. In 2008, benefits for public
employees grew at a rate three times that of private employees.

Public employees have developed an inverse relationship to the rest of
the economy, as it shrinks, shedding jobs and cutting salaries, they
draw on a never-ending taxpayer bounty. It used to be said that the
Great Depression wasn't so bad, if you had a job. The Great Recession
has practically been a boom, if you have a government job.

Public employees can thank the union label. In 2009, for the first
time ever, a majority of union members worked in the public sector.
Unionism has been a long, secular decline in the private sector (down
to 7.2 percent of all workers), but increasing in government (up to
37.4 percent of all workers).

These public-sector unions are flush with cash, politically connected,
and unabashedly self-interested. They are an active and growing
conspiracy against the public fisc. The states where they are most
powerful, California and New York, lumber toward insolvency. The
federal government follows not far behind, on the kind of diet geese
enjoy prior to becoming foie gras.

Public-employee unions can effectively occupy both sides of a
negotiating table. They donate to and elect the politicians who
bargain with them at contract time. Understandably, union-backed
politicians forget which side they're on. Fred Siegel, a visiting
professor at St. Francis College and contributing editor at the
Manhattan Institute's City Journal, recalls then-New Jersey governor
Jon Corzine telling a huge rally of state employees in 2006: "We will
fight for a fair contract!"

How often does a union hear that from management? This is why even
Franklin Roosevelt maintained, "The process of collective bargaining,
as usually understood, cannot be transplanted into the public
service." He'd blanch at the ways of 21st-century government.

In the Golden State, the California Teachers Association has all but
become a branch of state government. Its exertions have given the
state some of the worst schools in the country, and the highest-paid
teachers. California's prison guards have a powerful union, and also
the highest salaries in the nation. The state instituted a reckless
pension plan for public employees in 1999 that means more than 5,000
of them get more than $100,000 a year during retirement. It's not a
coincidence that California was reduced to issuing IOUs to cover its
obligations for a time last year.

Government by and for the public-employees unions is bankrupting, both
fiscally and ethically. In his post-Massachusetts explanations of why
health-care reform stalled, Pres. Barack Obama vaguely acknowledged a
few lapses in transparency. But he never mentioned the grossness
inherent in inviting union bosses to the White House so they can
exempt their members from a tax. That would cut too close to the
bone, since it's hard to tell where the unions end and the Democratic
party begins.

"You must first enable the government to control the governed," James
Madison wrote, "and in the next place oblige it to control itself."
That's impossible if government employees use public funds to muster
themselves into a political machine devoted to their own interests and
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*** UN agency calls for global cyberwarfare treaty, 'driver's license'
for Web users
- Agence France-Presse

The world needs a treaty to prevent cyber attacks becoming an all-out
war, the head of the main UN communications and technology agency
warned Saturday.

International Telcommunications Union secretary general Hamadoun Toure
gave his warning at a World Economic Forum debate where experts said
nations must now consider when a cyber attack becomes a declaration of

With attacks on Google from China a major talking point in Davos,
Toure said the risk of a cyber conflict between two nations grows
every year.

He proposed a treaty in which countries would engage not to make the
first cyber strike against another nation.

"A cyber war would be worse than a tsunami -- a catastrophe," the UN
official said, highlighting examples such as attacks on Estonia last

He proposed an international accord, adding: "The framework would look
like a peace treaty before a war."

Countries should guarantee to protect their citizens and their right
to access to information, promise not to harbour cyber terrorists and
"should commit themselves not to attack another."

John Negroponte, former director of US intelligence, said intelligence
agencies in the major powers would be the first to "express
reservations" about such an accord.

Susan Collins, a US Republican senator who sits on several Senate
military and home affairs committees, said the prospect of a cyber
attack sparking a war is now being considered in the United States.

"If someone bombed the electric grid in our country and we saw the
bombers coming in it would clearly be an act of war.

"If that same country uses sophisticated computers to knock out our
electricity grid, I definitely think we are getting closer to saying
it is an act of war," Collins said.

Craig Mundie, chief research and strategy officer for Microsoft, said
"there are at least 10 countries in the world whose internet
capability is sophisticated enough to carry out cyber attacks ... and
they can make it appear to come from anywhere."

"The Internet is the biggest command and control center for every bad
guy out there," he said.

The head of online security company McAfee told another Davos debate
Friday that China, the United States, Russia, Israel and France are
among 20 countries locked in a cyberspace arms race and gearing up for
possible Internet hostilities.

Mundie and other experts have said there is a growing need to police
the internet to clampdown on fraud, espionage and the spread of

"People don't understand the scale of criminal activity on the
internet. Whether criminal, individual or nation states, the
community is growing more sophisticated," the Microsoft executive

"We need a kind of World Health Organization for the Internet," he

"When there is a pandemic, it organizes the quarantine of cases. We
are not allowed to organize the systematic quarantine of machines that
are compromised."

He also called for a "driver's license" for internet users.

"If you want to drive a car you have to have a license to say that you
are capable of driving a car, the car has to pass a test to say it is
fit to drive and you have to have insurance."

Andre Kudelski, chairman of Kudelski Group, said that a new internet
might have to be created forcing people to have two computers that
cannot connect and pass on viruses. "One internet for secure
operations and one internet for freedom."
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Hot Tips

For the Serious Players Only!

Dear Friends;

We now are able to provide consulting services to any individual of
good character who wishes to take advantage of an unique and exclusive
opportunity to become a "Knight Commander of the British Empire"

The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire is an order of Chivalry
established on 4 June 1917 by King George V. The Order includes five
classes in civil and military divisions. In decreasing order of
seniority, these are:

* Knight Grand Cross (GBE) or Dame Grand Cross (GBE)
* Knight Commander (KBE) or Dame Commander (DBE)
* Commander (CBE)
* Officer (OBE)
* Member (MBE)

Only the highest two ranks admit an individual into knighthood
automatically, an honour allowing the recipient to use the title "Sir"
(male) or "Dame" (female) before his or her first name (though one can
be knighted separately from the Orders of Chivalry). Honorary
knighthoods, given to individuals who are not nationals of a realm
where Queen Elizabeth is Head of State, permit usage of the honour as
a post-nominal but not as a title before their name.

This is an official appointment and would include the individual being
knighted by HM Queen Elizabeth at Buckingham Palace (or other member
of the Royal family).

Examples of recent Knighthoods (KBE) include: Mick Jagger, Bob Geldof,
Richard Branson, Alan Greenspan, Eduardo Paolozzi, Paul McCartney,
Franco Zeffirelli, Sidney Poitier etc

Consulting Fees: Euro 2,250,000. Email your CV and Means (proof of
funds) for full particulars.
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*** Advisory

PT Shamrock is pleased to announce that we are now accepting credit
cards for most of our products as an additional payment method to make
your product and service experience with us easier and fastest.
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*** ACLU: Miami Beach cops arrest people for recording police
- Daniel Tencer, Raw Story

Miami Beach has long had a reputation for being a refuge for gay
Americans, but if the ACLU's allegations against the city prove true,
people who live alternative lifestyles may want to think twice about
retiring to the vibrant little community just off the coast of
southern Florida.

The ACLU's Florida chapter says it plans to sue the Miami Beach Police
Department after a gay visitor to the city was beaten and arrested by
police when he tried to call 911 to report the police beating of
another gay man.

According to the NBC affiliate in Miami, Harold Strickland says he was
harassed, verbally assaulted and wrongfully arrested in March, 2009,
when he called 911 after witnessing two police officers kicking a
handcuffed gay man in Miami Beach's Flamingo Park.

Strickland says the officers, identified as Frankly Forte and Elliot
Hazzi, were kicking the suspect "like his head was a football." When
the officers saw Strickland making a call on a nearby pay phone,
Strickland says one officer came up to him and said, "We know what
you're doing here. We're sick of all the fucking fags in the

The officers arrested Strickland and continued to barrage him with
homophobic epithets, NBC Miami reports.

"Often, police target gay men walking near Flamingo Park for nothing
more than looking 'too gay'," Robert Rosenwald, director of the
Florida ACLU's LGBT Advocacy Project, said in a statement. "When
police officers become the problem rather than the solution, the City
needs to take action."

In a letter (PDF) sent to Miami Beach Mayor Matti Harrera Bower on
Wednesday, the ACLU said Miami Beach police "also have an alarming
history of arresting individuals, particularly African-American men
and women, who witness police misconduct."

The ACLU says it has received reports of Miami Beach officers
threatening to arrest witnesses of police misconduct and even tearing
out cellphone SIM cards belonging to people who photographed police

"All people have a clear constitutional right and a civic duty to
report police misconduct," said Ray Taseff, an attorney working with
the ACLU. "When police start arresting people for reporting police
misconduct, the public's faith in law enforcement suffers."

According to Carlos Santoscoy at OnTopMag, the officers who arrested
Strickland claimed in their police report that Strickland had been
"prowling" Flamingo Park and approached their squad car before fleeing
when he realized there was an officer inside.

But Santoscoy reports that Strickland's recorded 911 call "conflicts"
with the arresting officers' claims, as the officers can be heard on
the 911 call confronting Strickland after he had reported what he had
allegedly seen.

The ACLU is calling on Mayor Bower to discipline the two officers
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Dumbing Down

Israeli Scientists Show DNA Evidence Can be Fabricated
- NaturalNews

Scientists from the Tel Aviv, Israel-based company Nucleix have
demonstrated that it is possible to create fake DNA samples and plant
them as evidence at a crime scene, in a paper published in the journal
Forensic Science: International Genetics.

"You can just engineer a crime scene," said lead researcher and
Nucleix co-founder Dan Frumkin. "Any biology undergraduate could
perform this."

In addition to having developed a method of fabricating DNA evidence,
Nucleix has also developed a method of detecting faked DNA that it
plans to sell to forensics labs.

The scientists have developed two different ways to manufacture DNA
samples in order to fool law enforcement. The first involves using
DNA profiles from law enforcement databases, which record the code at
13 different spots on a person's genome. Using a pooled library of
DNA samples from a number of different people, the geneticists were
able to physically construct DNA that was identical to a suspect's DNA
at those 13 points. It would take only 425 different DNA snippets to
be able to construct every possible permutation, the researchers said.

The second method involved collecting actual DNA from the person whose
genetic material was to be faked, such as by collecting a strand of
their hair or saliva from a cup they had used.

In both cases, the DNA was then reproduced in large quantities using a
technique called whole genome amplification. This DNA was inserted
into red blood cells, which were then passed off as a real DNA sample.

A normal blood sample would contain both red and white blood cells,
and the red blood cells would contain no DNA. In addition to this
difference from a normal sample, amplified DNA lacks certain molecules
contained by normal DNA. Forensics labs are unlikely to test for
either of these anomalies without cause, however.

"DNA is a lot easier to plant at a crime scene than fingerprints,"
said Tania Simoncelli of the American Civil Liberties Union, in
response to the study. "We're creating a criminal justice system that
is increasingly relying on this technology."

The researchers warned that their techniques could also be used to
replicate enough of a person's DNA to carry out genetic testing on
them without their consent, thus violating their right to genetic

Sources for this story include: www.nytimes.com
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Dumb signs -

Gun Photos are "Offensive" at Walgreens
- AmmoLand.com

One of our members wrote to us recently about trying to get firearms
photos printed at a Walgreens Pharmacy in Belleville, New Jersery.

The NJCSD member and his brother are both gun collectors and active
members of the community as a whole.

The brother recently took photos of his collection for insurance
purposes, and emailed them to Walgreens to have them printed.

Gun Photos are "Offensive" at Walgreens When the brother's wife went
to pick up the prints, she was told by the cashier that Walgreens did
not print them because they were deemed "offensive".

Our member's brother returned to the store and spoke to the manager,
who told him that he personally found the pictures offensive, and so
did his staff. When the brother asked if it was Walgreens' policy not
to print pictures of guns, he refused to give a straight answer.

The member's brother contacted Walgreens Main Office on Tuesday
December 29th regarding the issue. We'll be following the story.
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Dumb facts

Manchester ID staff suffer isolation as new dawn fades
- The UK Register

The people of Manchester have either lost all interest in travelling
abroad and drinking, or couldn't give a monkey's about the
government's lame duck ID card scheme, if a commons answer is anything
to go by.

Manchester is the first big trialling ground for the ID card scheme,
before a broader trial across the rest of the North West. The
government has been spending almost half a million quid trying to
publicise the scheme in the city, touting its uses when travelling to
Europe and clubbing.

And the results so far?

Meg Hillier, the Home Office minister stuck with responsibility for
the scheme, revealed in a Commons answer this week that a whacking
1,300 people in Greater Manchester "have applied and attended an
enrolment appointment for an identity card" between November 30 and
January 14, 2010. Allowing for three Bank Holidays and weekends, that
works out to around 43 people a day.

Hillier revealed that over the same period, 439,000 passport
applications were received by the Identity and Passport Service.
However, she said that passport info was not "readily held in a format
to enable a further breakdown of those resident in Manchester". She
added that while ID card applicants could also apply for a passport,
the two processes were currently separate. Fingerprint biometric
passports are due to kick in from 2012, at which point anyone seeking
a passport can also get an ID card.

However, a quick back of the envelope calculation using those figures
suggests that while 0.7 per cent of the UK population as a whole was
applying for a passport, a mere 0.05 per cent of the 2.5m Greater
Mancunians were rushing to get an ID card. If you use the population
of the city proper, the rate is 0.26 per cent.

Back in October, the government said 2,000 people in the North West
expressed an interest in applying for the card. That suggests a
conversion rate that would make a direct mail firm proud, though how
many more people have joined the queue remains to be seen.

Perhaps those eager early birds are simply hoping to have a truly
unique collectable if the Tories scrap the benighted scheme if/when
they get into power.
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*** Dumb criminal acts

Terrorists 'plan attack on Britain with bombs INSIDE their bodies' to
foil new airport scanners
- Mail On Sunday

Britain is facing a new Al Qaeda terror threat from suicide 'body
bombers' with explosives surgically inserted inside them.

Until now, terrorists have attacked airlines, Underground trains and
buses by secreting bombs in bags, shoes or underwear to avoid

But an operation by MI5 has uncovered evidence that Al Qaeda is
planning a new stage in its terror campaign by inserting 'surgical
bombs' inside people for the first time.

Security services believe the move has been prompted by the recent
introduction at airports of body scanners, which are designed to catch
terrorists before they board flights.

It is understood MI5 became aware of the threat after observing
increasingly vocal internet 'chatter' on Arab websites this year.

The warning comes in the wake of the failed attempt by London-educated
Nigerian Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab to blow up an airliner approaching
Detroit on Christmas Day.

One security source said: 'If the terrorists are talking about this,
we need to be ready and do all we can to counter the threat.'

A leading source added that male bombers would have the explosive
secreted near their appendix or in their buttocks, while females would
have the material placed inside their breasts in the same way as
figure-enhancing implants.

Experts said the explosive PETN (Pentaerythritol Tetranitrate) would
be placed in a plastic sachet inside the bomber's body before the
wound was stitched up like a normal operation incision and allowed to

A shaped charge of 8oz of PETN can penetrate five inches of armour and
would easily blow a large hole in an airliner.

Security sources said the explosives would be detonated by the bomber
using a hypodermic syringe to inject TATP (Triacetone Triperoxide)
through their skin into the explosives sachet.

PETN, the main ingredient of Semtex plastic explosive, was used by
Richard Reid, the British Al Qaeda shoe-bomber, when he unsuccessfully
tried to blow up American Airlines Flight 63 from Paris to Miami in
December 2001.

In November, a Somali man who attempted to board a flight carrying a
syringe, liquid and powdered chemicals was arrested before take-off.

The airliner had been due to fly from Somalia's capital Mogadishu to

The Somali was carrying a nearly identical package to that of
Abdulmutallab, who tried to detonate it by injecting TATP from a

Abdulmutallab had stuffed explosives down his underpants as the
Northwest Airlines flight from Amsterdam made its final descent to
Detroit carrying 280 passengers.

But the detonator fluid set his clothes on fire rather than the
device, and he was overpowered.

Security sources fear the body-bombers could pretend to be diabetics
injecting themselves on airliners, Tubes or buses in order to prevent
anyone stopping their suicide missions.

Companies such as Smiths Detection International UK, which is based in
Watford, Hertfordshire, manufacture a range of luggage and body
scanners designed to identify chemicals, explosives and drugs at
airports and other passenger terminals around the world.

These include high-specification X-ray equipment that could identify
body bombs.

But one source with expertise in the field said: 'They can make as
many pieces of security equipment as they like but there is no one
magic answer that can spot every single potential terrorist passing

Conservative MP Patrick Mercer, chairman of the Commons
Counter-Terrorism Sub-Committee, said: 'Our enemies are constantly
evolving their techniques to try to defeat our methods of detection.

'This is one of the most savage forms that extremists could use, and
while we are redeveloping travel security we have got to take this new
development into account.'

Senior Government security sources confirmed last night that they were
aware of the new threat of body bombs, but were not prepared to make
any official comment.
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*** Angry Man Runs Naked Through Phoenix Airport

"I'm going to strip down to my underwear and I'm going to embarrass you."

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Cannon Fodder

Internet companies voice alarm over Italian law
- Reuters

Internet companies and civil liberty groups have voiced alarm over a
proposed Italian law which would make online service providers
responsible for their audiovisual content and copyright infringements
by users.

The draft, due to be approved next month, would make Internet Service
Providers (ISPs) like Fastweb (FWB.MI) and Telecom Italia (TLIT.MI),
and Web sites like Google's (GOOG.O) YouTube, responsible for
monitoring TV content on their pages, industry experts say.

It comes as Google's YouTube unit is engaged in a legal battle with
Mediaset (MS.MI), controlled by Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.
Italy's largest media group wants 500 million euros in damages from
YouTube for copyright infringement.

"As it is written at the moment, the law would certainly help
Mediaset in the procedure it has open against Google," Paolo Nuti,
president of the Italian Internet Providers Association, told Reuters.
However, he said he did not think the law was written expressly for
this purpose.

The proposed regulations would make Internet sites as liable as
television stations for their content and subject to hefty fines by
the AGCOM media watchdog, according to a 33-page draft.

"If this happens it would sweep away Internet 2.0," Nuti said. "It
would transform Internet platforms into judges or tribunals."
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*** DNA pioneer lambasts government database policy
- Kable

The developer of DNA fingerprinting and profiling has said the
government is wrong in retaining profiles of innocent people.

Geneticist Sir Alec Jeffreys told MPs that he was "astonished,
perplexed and deeply worried" about the existing management policy of
the National DNA Database.

He was providing evidence to the House of Commons Home Affairs Select
Committee in a session on the database on 3 February 2010. Currently,
everybody arrested in England and Wales has to provide a DNA sample,
and the government has been heavily criticised for retaining profiles
of people not charged or found innocent. The European Court of Human
Rights ruled against the policy of indefinite retention in late 2008.

In response to a question from committee chair Keith Vaz MP on whether
he stood by his criticism of the Home Office's revised proposals of
retaining the DNA of anyone who is arrested for six years, Jeffreys
replied: "Yes I do indeed, even six years is a unique situation. We
are the only country in the world that keeps DNA for that length of
time. New Zealand is the closest I can find. No other country is
doing this."

When asked by Liberal Democrat MP Tom Brake what additional controls
should be added to the current system, he said innocent people should
be taken off the database. He added that he would "object profoundly"
if his own DNA was put onto the system.

"DNA is intimately different to fingerprinting, it carries incredibly
intimate information about who you are, where you're from and your
family," said Jeffreys. He made reference to a recorded suicide due
to an innocent person's shame at being on the database and pointed out
that the likelihood of a false match "was not zero".

The geneticist said England and Wales should follow Scotland's lead,
where police only retain the DNA profiles of innocent people under
specific circumstances, with those accused of sexual assaults having
their profiles held for a maximum of five years.

Plans by the United Arab Emirates to introduce a mandatory database
for the whole population should be watched closely by the UK "to see
if it does impact on criminal protection", said Jeffreys.
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Oz/Nzed corner:

Loyalty cards one-sided

Supermarket reward programs are one-sided, with shoppers trading a
great deal of personal information for few financial benefits, a
consumer watchdog says.

For every $100 spent at supermarket giants Coles and Woolworths,
shoppers are only likely to see on average a $1 return if they belong
to a loyalty program, a study by Choice says.

With a Flybuys card at Coles, for example, a shopper would be rewarded
with a $50 gift voucher after parting with $15,700 at the supermarket
- an amount that would take on average about two years to accumulate,
says Choice spokeswoman Elise Davidson.

Under the Everyday Rewards scheme of Woolworths, it would take an
average 16 months for customers to spend $11,000 at the supermarket to
win a $50 gift voucher.

Flight deals are not much better.

"With FlyBuys, it takes seven years to earn enough for a Virgin Blue
Sydney-Melbourne flight, not including taxes and fees, and your points
expire after three years," Ms Davidson said.

"With Everyday Rewards it would take just over three years, again not
including the extras."

In exchange, the supermarket giants collect enormous amounts of
personal data from shoppers, which is stored on sophisticated
databases, Ms Davidson said.

If Jane is 53, lives in the northern suburbs of Melbourne with a cat,
buys red wine by the case and is fond of gardening on weekends, for
example, she will receive marketing emails that are relevant to her
demographic and interests.

Aside from getting little financial return for possessing a loyalty
card, consumers are further duped if they miss out on specials offered
by competitors because they shop exclusively at either Coles or
Woolworths, says Choice.

"A loyalty program creates a barrier, which makes it harder,
psychologically, for the consumer to shop somewhere else," Dr Paul
Harrison, senior lecturer in consumer behaviour and advertising at
Deakin University, tells Choice.

A spokeswoman for Woolworths, Claire Buchanan, said the Choice
findings were misleading because they did not take into consideration
the number of ways customers could accumulate points.

"It is not a stand-alone supermarket scheme," Ms Buchanan told AAP.

"The whole point of our scheme is that you accumulate points in all
sorts of ways, as well as in the supermarket."

One way consumers can accumulate points is to shop at other retailers
that are partners of Qantas's frequent flyer loyalty scheme, she said.

"We only launched our scheme on June 22 last year, and already 300,000
people have accumulated enough points to get a $50 gift card."

A spokesman for Flybuys was also disappointed with the way the Choice
study portrayed how points are accumulated at Coles.

"There is not one Flybuys card holder out of the 10 million that
relies just on points from groceries," Phil Hawkins said.

"It's a program where you can get points from 16 different places."

Such places include petrol stations owned by Coles, Liquorland, Target
and K-Mart.

"So it doesn't come down to a simple equation of you need to spend x
to get x," he said.


Homebuyers forced to make close call
- NZed Herald

A city centre apartment with resort facilities or suburban house with
plenty of space.

That's the choice facing homebuyers as the market shows continued
signs of growth.

According to New Zealand's largest valuation and property information
company, Quotable Value, values in the Auckland area rose 5.1 per cent
last year. Many other centres also had increases, albeit smaller.

The average sale price in Auckland last month was NZ$535,197. The
average across New Zealand's other urban areas was NZ$444,797. Both
figures were well up on last month.

With the market's traditional February peak around the corner, experts
predict central locations will continue to be most popular, despite a
mid-recession trend towards cheaper homes on the edge of the urban

QV research director Jonno Ingerson said most homebuyers love to be
close to the city and its amenities, have short commutes, and be on
the doorstep of great schools, particularly in Auckland.

And most of us are willing to pay dearly for it - despite smaller land
and house sizes.

The Herald on Sunday decided to see what you could buy for the average
prices in Auckland and around the rest of the North Island.

In the City of Sails, $535,000 would buy a "premium" penthouse
apartment with garage and resort facilities like a swimming pool, said
Ray White agent Dominic Worthington.

Kellands agents Tricia Lafferty said it would also net an apartment in
trendy city fringe suburbs like Herne Bay, St Mary's Bay and Westmere.
John Bolton, from Squirrel Financial Solutions and Mortgage Brokers,
said some of the best value could be had on the North Shore, in
suburbs like Hillcrest, Glenfield, Beach Haven or Birkdale.

Other agents pointed to more affordable properties in South and West
Auckland, which offered great amenities but a longer city commute.

The choice is the same outside Auckland. John O'Donnell, principal of
LJ Hooker offices in Mt Maunganui and Papamoa said the suburbs
epitomised the dilemma.

Mt Maunganui was highly sought after for its beach, shops and central
location, but $444,000 would most likely land a 35-year-old wooden

In Papamoa, 10 minutes down the road, this money could buy a large,
nearly-new home with all mod-cons.

Back To Oz:

Qantas to dump most first-class seats

Goodbye to all that ... Qantas plans to remove first-class seats from
most planes, except the A380.

Qantas is planning to dump two-thirds of its first-class airline seats
as part of a radical $400 million overhaul of its long-haul fleet.

The changes, which could increase economy seating areas on planes by
up to 20 per cent, comes after the world financial crisis sparked a
dramatic slump in demand for expensive premium seating on
long-distance flights.

Under the scheme that could be announced within weeks, Qantas would
retain first class seats only on its London and Los Angeles flights,
slashing the number of its first-class planes to 12 from 30, the
Australian Financial Review said.

The paper, quoting a leaked reconfiguration plan, said the changes
would mean that sumptuous first class bed-seats would be stripped out
of all the airline's Boeing 747-400s, leaving 14 first class seats in
just 12 Airbus A380 super jumbos.

Qantas confirmed it was in talks with suppliers and manufacturers
about implementing changes to its fleet, but declined to offer further
details or to confirm the Review story.

"We are considering a number of changes to our fleet including the
747-400 and we are still in early discussions with suppliers and
manufacturers," a Qantas spokeswoman said.

"We have flagged previously that Qantas is considering a number of
options for our fleet, but it's too premature to provide further
details on changes that Qantas may make in the future," she said.

The airline's Chief Executive Alan Joyce said Qantas would continue to
offer first class seats after it completes a new seat configuration,
the details of which he said were expected to be announced in a few

"There is a role for first class but it's not as extensive it was in
the past," Joyce told CNBC television.

The airline's international business is continuing to suffer, he
conceded, adding however that demand for air travel in the domestic
market was recovering.

Qantas said last month that its international patronage was down 22.6
per cent in the 12 months to November compared with a year earlier.
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Bug Bites:

Tor software updated after hackers crack into systems
- John Leyden

Privacy-conscious users of the Tor anonymiser network have been
urged to upgrade their software, following the discovery of a security

Two of seven directory authorities and a metrics data server were
compromised in a hack discovered earlier this month, Tor developer
Roger Dingledine explains. The three servers were taken offline and
refurbished following the hack.

Fresh identity keys for the two directory authorities hit by the hack
were created during the refurbishment process. Users should therefore
update to either Tor version or, so that they
can use the refurbished servers as conduits for sensitive traffic.

Project volunteers have taken steps to harden systems and prevent a
repetition of the hack, the significance of which has been downplayed.
Attackers reportedly used Tor's systems solely as a launchpad for
other attacks, without realising that the same servers also hosted Tor
code depositories. These were left unaffected by the breach.

"It appears the attackers didn't realize what they broke into - just
that they had found some servers with lots of bandwidth," Dingledine
explains. "The attackers set up some ssh keys and proceeded to use
the three servers for launching other attacks."

Neither was the attack severe enough for the unidentified attackers to
match up users to their destinations. Nor did it affect the Tor
source code.
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*** Red Hot Product!

Anonymous pre-paid NO NAME Debit Card - only Euro 175!

Our leprechaun has done it again and is proud to present this no name
anonymous Pre Paid Master Card with hologram accepted anywhere Master
Card is accepted, on-line, stores, ATMs, telephone and mail orders etc.
This No Name debit card doesn't bear any personal details about its
holder on the card or when used from an atm till or elsewhere.

Just Euro 175 while they remain available. Order two cards for only
Euro 279.95 including shipping.

This pre-paid anonymous card product is issued by a major bank in
Central America that is a full member of MasterCard and SWIFT. The
card itself has no name printed, embossed or encoded on it, so it
cannot be associated with specific person. The bank is obliged to
request client's ID, which are quite liberal if I say so myself. The
ID details will only be kept by the bank in Central America under
strict banking secrecy. Clients have direct access to real time card
balance both on-line and by telephone access.

Your no name card can be funded by USD wire transfer. [Note that this
card is designated for electronic use only so it shouldn't be used in
manual imprinters.]

* ATM Withdrawal Fee 3 USD
* ATM Balance Inquiry/Transaction History 0.5 USD
* ATM Transaction Decline 0.5 USD
* Online & POS Transaction fee 1 USD
* Online & POS Decline fee 0.5 USD
* Monthly Administrative fee 3.5 USD
* Card Load Fee 15 USD
* Card to Card Transfer 2 USD
* Card Replacement Fee (if lost/stole or damaged) 25 USD
* Inactive Fee (90 days) 10 USD
* The maximum reload amount 2,500 USD
* Maximum per prepaid card a month 10,000 USD
* The minimum total to obtain from ATM 10 USD
* Minimum balance 10 USD

To order please proceed to our secure on-line order form at

Your order code for this product is "175 No Name."
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*** Directgov battles terrorism with report-a-website page
- The UK Register

The Home Office has launched a page for people to report online
extremism and terror-related content.

The section of the Directgov website will link directly to a team
within the Association of Chief Police Officers Prevent Delivery Unit
for investigation.

The site starts by checking people are not trying to report an actual
real world crime happening now.

Assuming you are not, it goes on to ask if you are reporting a hate
crime, web content which encourages or praises terrorism or terrorist
training material.

If police find the site does "meet the threshold for illegal content"
it can be removed under the 2006 Terrorism Act.

Content likely to meet this threshold includes bomb-making
instructions, poison recipes and instructions on making weapons.

Illegal violent extremist content includes videos of beheadings with
messages of praise for the attackers, speech or writing which calls
for racial or religious violence, content designed to stir up hatred
against any religious or ethnic group and chat forums with messages
calling for people to commit acts of terrorism.

Jacqui Smith promised action against extremist websites back in
January 2009, but in reality this seems to depend on voluntary action
from ISPs.
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Shamrock's Missive:

Kung Hei Fat Choy - Happy Chinese New Year to our many Asian

Here's a lovely Valentine's greeting from your government!

Hold onto your wallets and pocketbook's readers! Your about to get a
whopping 1.9 trillion [yes read that TRILLION, think thirteen digits,
i.e. US$1,900,000,000,000] in tax increases shoved up your backside.
Ouch! See

Frankly we believe that's only the beginning.

In spite of President Obama stating that only the wealthy and big
business will bear the lion's share of the tax increase, at the end of
the day dear readers, it's you and I the consumers, who'll bear the
brunt and pay for these tax increases by business simply passing them
along in the form of higher prices, job lay offs due to increased
social security and payroll taxes just like business' have for
thousands of years!

Whist we're not Americans, everyone worldwide will be paying for
America's tax increase in the form of higher prices for everything.
And speaking of not being a Yankee, the Brits and the Europeans are
also going to get it shoved up their backsides as well in the form of
higher taxes and prices. Why?

According the UK Daily Mail, Tuesday, February 9, 2010; "Traders and
hedge funds are making record bets against the Euro, underlining the
mounting alarm overt the region's debt crisis.

Market players have bet almost Euro 5 billion that the value of the
currency will fall against the U.S. dollar, the largest 'short
position' since it was launched.

European governments have been drawing up plans for a possible
bail-out of Greece, amid fears it could be spiraling towards debt
default." Full story at

You can bet your bottom Euro the EU isn't going to allow Greece,
Italy, Ireland, Spain or Portugal, better known as the PIIGS,
all of whom are near default, aka bankruptcy. They will bailout
Greece and other EU nations in order to save the European Union.

In the meantime there has been a flight back to the "safe" US Dollar
as investors flee the Euro. We wonder out loud if this isn't some
kind of consorted effort on who knows whose part to strengthen the

If I were a betting man, in addition to Greece I'd believe that at
least one, possibly two additional PIIGS (Portugal, Italy, Ireland,
Greece and Spain,) are near or likely to default and will be bailed
out by the IMF/EU. In order to bail out Greece and or other EU
nations, massive tax and price increases, along with other Draconian
measures to save the "EU" will be forthcoming and in fact are
already in the making.

At the end of the day dear readers, we're in for a world of horrific
tax increases, the likes of which have never been seen previously
in history!

So at the start of the second decade of the 21st century, we may look
back on this time and call it the decade of desperately higher taxes!

My question for you dear readers; what are you going to do about it?

See you next issue


"The people never give up their liberties but under some delusion."
- Edmund Burke, 1784
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"...I believe that at the end of the (20th) century the use of words
and general educated opinion will have altered so much that one will
be able to speak of machines thinking without expecting to be
- Alan Mathison Turing, 1912- 1954
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*** Tid Bits

28 Year Old Business Harassed For Cutting Cedar Trees on Private

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*** More Tid Bits

Traveling With Laptops Could Get Tougher
- Eric Lai, Computerworld

Buying your next laptop computer or smartphone on-line could suddenly
get a lot more expensive if a little-known U.S. Department of
Transportation proposal to tighten rules around the shipment of small,
battery-powered devices by air goes through, says an industry group
opposing the move.

Airline passengers would be affected too, as rules banning spare
lithium-ion batteries in checked-in luggage would also be extended to
alkaline and nickel metal-hydride batteries, argues George Kerchner,
executive director of the Washington D.C.-based Portable Rechargeable
Battery Association.

"It will be a nightmare for passengers," Kerchner said.

On January 8, the department's Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety

Graphic: Diego Aguirreration (PHMSA) announced plans to eliminate
exceptions on small lithium cells and batteries, defined as less than
100-watt hours in capacity (typical laptop batteries hold 60-80

Small lithium batteries are considered a class 9 hazardous material, a
miscellaneous category which includes dry ice and magnetized goods.
Batteries under the 100 watt-hour limit had long been exempted from
the rules.

The PHMSA, in consulting with the Federal Aviation Administration
(FAA) with related legislative committees, says undoing the exception
will force vendors and transport companies to use stronger packaging
and cut down on the number of accidents.

"Under existing regulations, a flight crew may not be made aware of a
pallet containing thousands of lithium batteries on board the
aircraft, yet a five-pound package of flammable paint or dry ice would
be subject to the full scope of the regulations," said Minnesota
Democratic representative and House Transportation and Infrastructure
chairman, Jim Oberstar, in a statement. "That makes little sense,"

The full text of the Department of Transportation's proposal can be
viewed on-line, and people may also leave comments.

Kerchner says that instead of stricter rules, we'd be better off with
stricter enforcement of existing rules.

The proposed changes would affect everything from power tools to
defibrillators and iPads. Even button battery-powered hearing aids
would be impacted, he said.

And by making the U.S. stricter than the International Civil Aviation
Organization that governs the rest of the world, Kerchner said, it
will require manufacturers and shippers to make sweeping, costly
changes to how they package, label and ship consumer electronics and
computer goods.

For instance, the battery inside an already-padded box for a new
notebook PC might need to be packaged in an additional fiberboard box
along with extra shipping documents, he said.

It could also mean untold numbers of workers overseas and in the U.S.
will have to get "fully-regulated hazmat" training to simply handle a
box with an iPod or HP laptop inside, Kerchner said.

"We're talking about billions of dollars," he said. Those new costs
will likely be passed on by manufacturers and shipping companies to

"If you buy a digital camera and want it delivered next-day-air, that
might an additional $30 to $40 that the shipper is not going to
absorb," he said. "It will have a huge impact on on-line sales."

The proposed changes would likely affect all consumers to a degree, he
said, since electronics goods, because of how quickly they lose value,
tend to be shipped via air from factories in Asia to the U.S. rather
than sent by ship.

Neither the Department of Transportation nor the House Aviation
Subcommittee responded to requests for comment. A major snowstorm was
expected to hit Washington D.C. on Friday and many workers stayed

For air travelers, the department would also prohibit air passengers
from keeping extra alkaline or rechargeable nickel-metal-hydride
(NiMH) batteries in their checked-in luggage. Those batteries are
acceptable if they are inside the devices. They are also permitted
inside or outside devices if stored in carry-on luggage.

The rule changes would also require electronics goods to be carried in
cargo sections that either have fire suppression systems, or are
accessible by the pilots in case of a fire. Kerchner said that is
impractical and would lead to, in many cases, electronics goods piled
right behind the cockpit.

While he acknowledged the department's figure of 40 air
transport-related incidents since 1991 involving lithium batteries and
devices powered by lithium batteries, Kerchner said it is a small
number in the context of the 3.3 billion lithium batteries transported
in 2008 alone.

"What we've found is that when shippers are in full compliance, there
have been no incidents," he said. "The industry has an excellent
safety record."
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*** Even More Tid Bits

Retailers fooled by fake and borrowed IDs
- John Oates

Kids in the UK are experts in using fake IDs bought on-line or using
someone else's documents to get their hands on age-restricted

Half of those surveyed have bought alcohol while underage and one in
five have bought knives. One in five kids use fake ID cards bought
online mostly to get into pubs and clubs.

More usual is borrowing a card from someone else to get served in a
pub - 78 per cent of over-18s said they had lent identity documents to
younger kids.

Some 42 per cent of those surveyed said they'd used a parent's credit
card to buy booze, cigarettes or adult DVDs online.

Young people in the UK have mostly not heard of the government Proof
of Age Standards Scheme - which is meant to provide a kitemark for the
various cards aimed at teenagers. A whopping 71 per cent had not
heard of the scheme at all and only four per cent of those surveyed
would get such a card.

The government is selling national ID cards as a way for 16 to 24 year
olds to prove their age when making age-restricted purchases.

The survey of 1,200 kids was carried out on behalf of Clarity
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*** Bits n bobs

Student Arrested For Doodling
- Electronic Frontier Foundation

The mother of Alexa Gonzalez, the Queens public school student
arrested after being caught doodling on her desk, tells the Daily News
that the principal is unapologetic about how the 12-year-old was
treated. According to Moraima Camacho, Junior High School 190
principal Marilyn Grant said "that it wasn't their fault that it was
something they had to do. She doesn't consider it doodling."

When her teacher saw her doodling/defacement of school property with a
lime green magic marker, an assistant principal called the cops and
Gonzalez was hauled away in metal handcuffs (and not plastic handcuffs
that authorities use on adult protesters!) to the police precinct
across the street. Camacho told WCBS 2, "As soon as I saw her take
off the handcuffs I said, 'No, what are you ' and (the officer) was
like, 'sorry, this is the procedure. We have to do this.' My
daughter was humiliated! Humiliated!" Plus, Gonzalez is reportedly
throwing up after the trauma.

The Department of Education admitted that Grant made a mistake and
said Gonzalez's suspension would be lifted (the student still faces 8
hours of community service, a book report and an essay) and the NYPD
agreed handcuffing the girl was going a little too far. The NYCLU's
executive director Donna Lieberman said "This should be a wakeup call
to the mayor" (the group has already sued the city for excessive
arrests of students). Still, Camacho was worried that the incident
means her daughter will have a permanent police record, but "an NYPD
spokesman told CBS 2 HD no files are being maintained on the
12-year-old. "
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More Bits N bobs

Australia to introduce body scanners after failed US attack
- Times Of India

Australia will introduce full body scans for airline passengers as it
strengthens aviation security in response to a failed attempt to bring
down a US-bound plane, the government said on Tuesday.

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said 200 million dollars (173 million US)
would be spent over four years on increased airport policing and
security technology after the attempted bombing of a jet flying from
Amsterdam to Detroit on December 25.

"The Christmas Day attempt showed that no nation can afford to be
complacent when it comes to security," he told reporters in Canberra.
"The government's highest priority is the safety and security of

Rudd said the government would spend 28.5 million dollars helping the
industry fund a range of new screening technologies, including body
scanners, multi-view x-ray machines, and bottle scanners that detect
liquid explosives.
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*** Disturbing facts

The government has your baby's DNA
- Elizabeth Cohen, CNN

When Annie Brown's daughter, Isabel, was a month old, her pediatrician
asked Brown and her husband to sit down because he had some bad news
to tell them: Isabel carried a gene that put her at risk for cystic

While grateful to have the information -- Isabel received further
testing and she doesn't have the disease -- the Mankato, Minnesota,
couple wondered how the doctor knew about Isabel's genes in the first
place. After all, they'd never consented to genetic testing.

It's simple, the pediatrician answered: Newborn babies in the United
States are routinely screened for a panel of genetic diseases. Since
the testing is mandated by the government, it's often done without the
parents' consent, according to Brad Therrell, director of the National
Newborn Screening & Genetics Resource Center.

In many states, such as Florida, where Isabel was born, babies' DNA is
stored indefinitely, according to the resource center.

Many parents don't realize their baby's DNA is being stored in a
government lab, but sometimes when they find out, as the Browns did,
they take action. Parents in Texas, and Minnesota have filed
lawsuits, and these parents' concerns are sparking a new debate about
whether it's appropriate for a baby's genetic blueprint to be in the
government's possession.

"We were appalled when we found out," says Brown, who's a registered
nurse. "Why do they need to store my baby's DNA indefinitely?
Something on there could affect her ability to get a job later on, or
get health insurance."

According to the state of Minnesota's Web site, samples are kept so
that tests can be repeated, if necessary, and in case the DNA is ever
need to help parents identify a missing or deceased child. The
samples are also used for medical research.

Government has your baby's DNA Art Caplan, a bioethicist at the
University of Pennsylvania, says he understands why states don't first
ask permission to screen babies for genetic diseases. "It's
paternalistic, but the state has an overriding interest in protecting
these babies," he says.

However, he added that storage of DNA for long periods of time is a
different matter.

"I don't see any reason to do that kind of storage," Caplan says. "If
it's anonymous, then I don't care. I don't have an issue with that.
But if you keep names attached to those samples, that makes me

DNA given to outside researchers

Genetic testing for newborns started in the 1960s with testing for
diseases and conditions that, if undetected, could kill a child or
cause severe problems, such as mental retardation. Since then, the
screening has helped save countless newborns.

Over the years, many other tests were added to the list. Now, states
mandate that newborns be tested for anywhere between 28 and 54
different conditions, and the DNA samples are stored in state labs for
anywhere from three months to indefinitely, depending on the state.
(To find out how long your baby's DNA is stored, see this
state-by-state list.)

Brad Therrell, who runs the federally funded genetic resource
consortium, says parents don't need to worry about the privacy of
their babies' DNA.

"The states have in place very rigid controls on those specimens,"
Therrell says. "If my children's DNA were in one of these state labs,
I wouldn't be worried a bit."

The specimens don't always stay in the state labs. They're often
given to outside researchers -- sometimes with the baby's name

According to a study done by the state of Minnesota, more than 20
scientific papers have been published in the United States since 2000
using newborn blood samples.

The researchers do not have to have parental consent to obtain samples
as long as the baby's name is not attached, according to Amy Gaviglio,
one of the authors of the Minnesota report. However, she says it's
her understanding that if a researcher wants a sample with a baby's
name attached, consent first must be obtained from the parents.

More Empowered Patient news and advice

Scientists have heralded this enormous collection of DNA samples as a
"gold mine" for doing research, according to Gaviglio.

"This sample population would be virtually impossible to get
otherwise," says Gaviglio, a genetic counselor for the Minnesota
Department of Health. "Researchers go through a very stringent
process to obtain the samples. States certainly don't provide samples
to just anyone."

Brown says that even with these assurances, she still worries whether
someone could gain access to her baby's DNA sample with Isabel's name

"I know the government says my baby's data will be kept private, but
I'm not so sure. I feel like my trust has been taken," she says.

Parents don't give consent to screening

Brown says she first lost trust when she learned that Isabel had
received genetic testing in the first place without consent from her
or her husband.

"I don't have a problem with the testing, but I wish they'd asked us
first," she says.

Since health insurance paid for Isabel's genetic screening, her
positive test for a cystic fibrosis gene is now on the record with her
insurance company, and the Browns are concerned this could hurt her in
the future.

"It's really a black mark against her, and there's nothing we can do
to get it off there," Brown says. "And let's say in the future they
can test for a gene for schizophrenia or manic-depression and your
baby tests positive -- that would be on there, too."

Brown says if the hospital had first asked her permission to test
Isabel, now 10 months old, she might have chosen to pay for it out of
pocket so the results wouldn't be known to the insurance company.

Caplan says taking DNA samples without asking permission and then
storing them "veers from the norm."

"In the military, for instance, they take and store DNA samples, but
they tell you they're doing it, and you can choose not to join if you
don't like it," he says.

What can parents do

In some states, including Minnesota and Texas, the states are required
to destroy a baby's DNA sample if a parent requests it. Parents who
want their baby's DNA destroyed are asked to fill out this form in
Minnesota and this form in Texas.

Parents in other states have less recourse, says Therrell, who runs
the genetic testing group. "You'd probably have to write a letter to
the state saying, 'Please destroy my sample,'" he says.

He adds, however, that it's not clear whether a state would
necessarily obey your wishes. "I suspect it would be very difficult
to get those states to destroy your baby's sample," he says.
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*** Letters to the Editor:

Keep them postcards and letters coming' folks, 'cause we
done mailed the rosebushes!!

Dear Shamrock:

Hello from the US! With the way Obama is running this country into
the ground I could sure use a healthy dose of leprechaun wisdom.

Please give me access to the member's site. Thanks


Dear J.

Thanks for the kind words. Each month the password for the membership
area changes. So just email each month with "MEMBERS" in the subject
heading and our leprechaun will email you the current password.



Dear Shamrock:

Shamrock you've got the best service I've had in years. I look
forward to doing business with you for a long time; I'm so excited I
told just about everybody that needs to know about you folks and
my ordered and received from you.

- Eric from Canada

Dear Eric from Canada

Thanks for the kind words and for your business.


Dear Shamrock:

Congrats on your 16th year publishing the best privacy newsletter bar



Dear M.P. and to the many readers who congratulated us on our
16th anniversary;

Thanks to ALL of you for your best wishes and continued support.


Dear Shamrock:

Thank you for receipt of the product. I am VERY pleased with my
purchase and with your response to my questions!!!!

This US Virtual Bank Debit card is the best product I've purchased in
20 years!


Dear Shamrock:

Shamrock you guys rock! Great site, great newsletter and super
products and service.

Staying alive in America!

Dear Staying alive in America;

Thanks for the kind words, which are always appreciated.

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Quote of the month!

"My best wishes, in the joys, and festivities, and the solemn services
of that day on which will be completed the fiftieth year from its
birth, of the independence of the United States: a memorable epoch in
the annals of the human race, destined in future history to form the
brightest or the blackest page, according to the use or the abuse of
those political institutions by which they shall, in time to come, be
shaped by the human mind."
- John Adams statement weeks before his death at age 90 years,
247 days, about the destiny of the United States, which historians
such as Joy Hakim have characterized as a "warning" for his fellow
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*** "PT Shamrock's Exclusive Member's Site!"

Each month we offer exclusive information, free privacy programs,
access to our newsletter archives and other insider information
for members only.

Our member's site is accessed by user name and password only. This
is available to our newsletter subscribers ONLY!

Each month the password will change and you will have to e-mail us
from your subscribers e-mail address to request the NEW password in
order to gain access.

As a subscriber to our newsletter you automatically qualify for this
exclusive service. Just send an e-mail to ptshamrock@ptshamrock.com> and place "Members" in the subject heading.
We will forward to you full details for signing up and gaining access
to our Members Site, reserved for you.

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Dear Friend:

If you like our newsletter please tell your friends and associates
about us. They can subscribe *FREE* by sending an e-mail to:

Our pledge!

We never spam our subscribers, never rent or give our
subscribers list to anyone, and unlike other newsletters do
not accept paid advertisements; And of course, our PT Buzz
Newsletter is absolutely free, just packed full of interesting
privacy news and information with a tad of humor thrown in for
good measure.

We're probably the oldest privacy newsletter on the Internet!

Thank you for your patronage and help in spreading the word.


"The right to privacy is a part of our basic freedoms. Privacy is
fundamental to close family ties, competitive free enterprise, the
ownership of property, and the exchange of ideas."

PT Shamrock - issue one; 1994
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Don't forget to check out our Special Offers at

See you next issue!

"Mehr sein, als scheinen" (German Proverb)
Be more, seem less!

PT Shamrock
- - - - - - - - - - NOTICE - - - - - - - - - -
In compliance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107, this material is
distributed free without profit or payment for non-profit
research and for educational purposes only.
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