Tag Archives: Trump

Quid Pro Quo

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Quid Pro Quo is a term we have all been hearing about lately.  Mostly in reference to the Ukranian/Trump saga of the famed orange one feeling that his hands are larger than he thinks, or rather, he wants the world to know that his is bigger than the President of Ukraine.  So, the “boy” king pushes the sand around the sandbox until he moves the catshit over to some other leader to deal with.

We all seem to be concerned about Russia and their continued involvement into the election process of the United States.  However, we must understand that this kind of action is nothing new to global politics and the United States has pretty much written the book on the subject.  We have been involved in the elections of other countries for years.  The most notable might be the 1953 coup in Iran when we ousted the democratically elected Iranian Prime Minister Mohammed Mossadegh in 1953.  We replaced their government with an authoritarian monarchy that was more favorable to Washington’s interests.  Then, in 1954 we unseated Guatalmala’s left-wing President, Jacobo Arbenz, who seemed to have the conviction to challenge the vast control of the United Fruit Co., a United States Corporation, with agrarian laws that made life much better and fairer to the Guatemalan farmers.  During this time in 1954, a young man named Che Guevara was traveling through Guatemala and was deeply affected by Arbenz’s overthrow.  This action would create the foundation of his conviction for the need for radical revolution.  We could also discuss the removal and assassination of the Congolese leader Patrice Lumumba in 1961.  It was in 1964, when the CIA distributed nearly $4M dollars on 15 different covert action projects and funding certain political parties to prevent then Chilean President Salvador Allende from winning an election in 1964.  Later, as the CIA was exposed in their role in overseas elections and yet couldn’t defeat Allende at the ballot box in 1970, the United States government decided to remove him anyway.  So, Washington helped in the 1973 violent removal of the socialist President Allende, whose government was ended with a coup led by the ruthless and murderous General Augusto Pinochet.

Not withstanding its instigation of coups and alliances with extremists and right-winged juntas that would do America’s bidding abroad, Washington also participated in much more subtle influences of elections in all points relevant to United States interests throughout the planet.  And, we might add, so did Moscow.  “These two powers intervened in 117 elections around the world from 1946-2000, or an average of once in every nine competitive elections” says political scientist Dov Levin.  And we are all well aware that they both continue to do so today.

Peter Kornbluh, currently the director of the National Security Archive Chilean and Cuba Documentation Project, which is affiliated with George Washington University, said in a 1997 interview with the New York Times as to the late 1990’s concerns that China was supplying illicit funds which dominated concerns about Democratic campaign financing, “China has done little more than emulate a long pattern of U.S. manipulation, bribery and covert operations to influence the political trajectory of countless countries around the world.”

When we look at the current state of Bolivia and their most recent elections we might not need to look to far to find the hands of the United States, Russia and China involved in some ways to the political unrest there.  Bolivia holds over 9 million tons of lithium, which is the highest in the world per individual country and is 22% of the world’s total lithium deposits.  Both Chile and Argentina, hold 18% and 16% respectively.  We shouldn’t leave out the lithium deposits in Afghanistan which appear to be valued at over $1 trillion dollars.  This was once noted in the early 2000’s as the mother lode of lithium and was quoted in a Pentagon memo that “Afghanistan could become the Saudi Arabia of lithium .”  However, all eyes are now turning to Boliva.

The leftist Morales government of Boliva made a move on November 4, 2019 to cancel the December 2018 agreement with a German firm ACI Systems Alemania for developing lithium for batteries like those in electric cars.  This move by the just resigned Evo Morales came following weeks of protests throughout Bolivia with protesters chanting “Bolivia’s lithium deposits belong to the Bolivian people. Down with the multinational corporate cabals!”  ACI System Alemania provides batteries to Tesla, among other clients.  Telsa’s stock rose on Monday, November 11, 2019, after the weekend.

Morales has been working to create a publicly-owned lithium industry to help diversify his country’s economy and raise more of its people out of poverty.  His canceling of the contract with the German firm was over concerns that not enough of the financial benefit would be reaching the indigenous people who live near the untapped Salar de Uyuni salt flats, located high in the Andes mountains, which are home to the worlds largest known lithium reserves.  It was only days after the re-election of Morales, who beat his right-wing opponent and former President Carlos Mesa by over 10 points, back in October when the right-wing demonstrations began.  The vocal and impoverished protesters supporting Morales gained ground eventually urging the military to make a move and demand that the leader leave office in order to “maintain stability”.  The actions of the military and the coup was received with approval from the Trump administration and the Trudeau government of Canada.  This only exposes the delicate task it is for any small country that is rich in resources that tries to move themselves forward to help their poor and working class over the needs and demands of the rich, corporations and the corporate imperialist states.  Make note that Russia and China still hold contracts with Bolivia at this time.

The following video is Bolivian President Evo Morales delivering a scathing address directly to President Trump at the UN in Feb. 2019 regarding the political promises and practices of the United States and its relation to countries such as Bolivia.

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I welcome those reading my blog. I appreciate all of the emails I have been receiving. I also appreciate those who have registered and subscribe to this blog. If you have come from Facebook please comment on this site, rather than any Facebook post of this page due to the fact that there are many readers who are not part of Facebook forums, or even Facebook itself. I encourage all readers to put their comments on this site so that all of the information will be accessible to all readers from all parts of the internet. I urge you to join this site and receive the RSS feed, or bookmarking us, sharing us with your friends on Facebook and Twitter. If you know of anyone who might benefit from this information I urge you to pass on this website address! Share and let’s make some change together!

Thank you for stopping by.

©2014-2019 Doug Boggs All Rights Reserved

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Supreme Court will hear a challenge to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

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It seems that the Supreme Court will hear a challenge to the constitutionality of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The organization has been stripped down as of lately under the current Administration to a point where it is nearly just a namesake of hope to those who ever felt it held any solace or reparations to any homeowner.

“Under President Donald Trump, the CFPB has already dramatically pared back its role as a financial watchdog. A report published by the Consumer Federation of America earlier this year found that the agency had dropped enforcement activity 80% compared with its peak in 2015. Average monetary relief, the report found, was down 96%.”– consumerfed.org

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KEY POINTS

  • The Supreme Court announces that it will hear a case challenging the constitutionality of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a regulatory agency established in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis.
  • A decision in the case is likely by the end of June, meaning that the fate of the regulator will be announced in the middle of the 2020 presidential campaign.
  • That could be particularly significant for Sen. Elizabeth Warren, a consumer advocate whose role in creating the agency has formed a central pillar of her presidential bid.
GP: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Headquarters 190304

Signage is displayed inside the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) headquarters in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Monday, March 4, 2019.Andrew Harrer | Bloomberg | Getty Images

The Supreme Court on Friday announced that it will hear a case challenging the constitutionality of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a regulatory agency established in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis.

The case was brought by Seila Law, a California-based law firm, which alleges that the structure of the agency grants too much power to its director, in violation of the Constitution’s separation of powers.

Unlike the heads of many other federal agencies, the director of the CFPB may only be removed by the president “for inefficiency, neglect of duty, or malfeasance in office.” Given the CFPB’s broad law enforcement powers, that independence is unconstitutional, Seila Law has argued in court papers.

In an order posted Friday, the justices asked both sides to address whether the bureau can remain even if its structure is found to be unconstitutional.

A decision in the case is likely by the end of June, meaning that the fate of the regulator will be announced in the middle of the 2020 presidential campaign. That could be particularly significant for Sen. Elizabeth Warren, a consumer advocate whose role in creating the agency has formed a central pillar of her presidential bid.

It is possible that a ruling against the CFPB would maintain the agency but only on the condition that its director, who serves a five-year term, can be removed at the pleasure of the president. If Trump loses his reelection bid in 2020, that would mean that a Democrat will be able to replace Trump’s current appointee, CFPB director Kathy Kraninger, when they take office.

Read more: The head of the CFPB now believes that the financial regulator is unconstitutionally structured

To date, the CFPB has survived multiple court challenges.

The federal appeals court in Washington upheld the agency last year on the basis that the Supreme Court, more than 80 years ago, signed off on the Federal Trade Commission, a similarly structured regulator, in the 1935 case Humphrey’s Executor. In May, the CFPB defeated Seila Law before a panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

“Seila Law contends that an agency with the CFPB’s broad law-enforcement powers may not be headed by a single Director removable by the President only for cause. That argument is not without force,” Circuit Judge Paul Watford wrote for the court.

But, he said, given Humphrey’s Executor and a later case which reaffirmed the ruling, the CFPB is constitutional.

“The Supreme Court is of course free to revisit those precedents, but we are not,” he wrote.

Under President Donald Trump, the CFPB has already dramatically pared back its role as a financial watchdog. A report published by the Consumer Federation of America earlier this year found that the agency had dropped enforcement activity 80% compared with its peak in 2015. Average monetary relief, the report found, was down 96%.

Given the makeup of the Supreme Court, it’s likely that the agency’s structure could be struck down.

Justice Brett Kavanaugh, whose confirmation last year delivered conservatives a reliable majority, made clear in a dissent from the Washington appeals court decision upholding the bureau that he believes the structure of the CFPB is impermissible.

“Indeed, other than the President, the Director of the CFPB is the single most powerful official in the entire U.S. Government, at least when measured in terms of unilateral power,” Kavanaugh wrote at the time. “That is not an overstatement.”

Notably, Kavanaugh did write in that dissent that he believed the director’s independence could be limited while leaving the rest of the bureau intact, “so that the Director of the CFPB is supervised, directed, and removable at will by the President.”

The case is Seila Law v. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, No. 19-7.

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED CNBC – FRI, OCT 18 20192:58 PM EDT; UPDATED FRI, OCT 18 2019 3:34 PM EDT Tucker Higgins@IN/TUCKER-HIGGINS-5B162295/@TUCKERHIGGINS

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I welcome those reading my blog. I appreciate all of the emails I have been receiving. I also appreciate those who have registered and subscribe to this blog. If you have come from Facebook please comment on this site, rather than any Facebook post of this page due to the fact that there are many readers who are not part of Facebook forums, or even Facebook itself. I encourage all readers to put their comments on this site so that all of the information will be accessible to all readers from all parts of the internet. I urge you to join this site and receive the RSS feed, or bookmarking us, sharing us with your friends on Facebook and Twitter. If you know of anyone who might benefit from this information I urge you to pass on this website address! Share and let’s make some change together!

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©2014-2019 Doug Boggs All Rights Reserved

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I had a dream

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I had a dream.  In my dream, last night, sometime in the near future prior to the November mid term elections, there were two Russian fighter jets that were downed by the Royal Saudi Air Force(RSAF).  The Saudi’s F15’s out maneuvered the Russian MIG pilots, as if they were sitting still.  Or at least, that is the story that was put into the international press loop.  Let’s just state that the result did not fair thee well.

Vladimir Putin calculated the timing of this military exercise because he realized that he would not be able to corrupt the mid term elections enough to overthrow the democratic dominance for the congressional seats.  He knew he could hold the Senate, but in order to control the election process enough to turn the Congress he would have shown his hand substantially.  He and his American administration would have been too exposed.  So, before the Congress gets swayed from the GOP to the Democratic majority, he decided to make his move.

Putin has been wanting to put an end to the United Nations for quite some time.  America’s global dominance through this tool has been a bane to his existence for quite some time.  A slap in the face, so to speak from the world at large, at every turn for Putin.  Nearly, one year ago to the day, he chided the U.N. by skipping Trump’s first General Assembly meeting to watch massive war games near NATO’s eastern border.  Since then we have seen the results of Russian involvement in Syria, as well as, the United States involvement in Syria and the slaughter of thousands of innocent civilians.

In 2013, the USAF tendered an offer for security services to protect the Saudi air force from cyberwarfare attacks.  Despite this, it seems that Trump’s allegiance to Putin is stronger and declined to get involved in the current skirmish.

Russia invades Saudia Arabia using nuclear weapons.  Saudi’s respond in kind.  Despite this, it seems that Trump’s allegiance to Putin is stronger and declined to get involved.  The U.N. breaks up due to the lack of support from U.S. to its ally.  There is now global chaos in the markets.  The Middle Eastern countries began to scramble trying to create new relationships due to the exclusionary policy of the United States and their lack of follow through to long held alliances.

Putin also shut down the power grid in rolling black outs throughout the United States showing that he now has full access to disrupt the world’s most powerful country.  Internal chaos ensues throughout the United States.

World War iii begins.

 

 

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I welcome those reading my story. I appreciate all of the emails I have been receiving. I also appreciate those who have registered and subscribe to this blog. If you have come from Facebook please comment on this site, rather than any Facebook post of this page due to the fact that there are many readers who are not part of Facebook forums, or even Facebook itself. I encourage all readers to put their comments on this site so that all of the information will be accessible to all readers from all parts of the internet. I urge you to join this site and receive the RSS feed, or bookmarking us, sharing us with your friends on Facebook and Twitter. If you know of anyone who might benefit from this information I urge you to pass on this website address! Share and let’s make some change together!

Thank you for stopping by.

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©2014-2018 Doug Boggs All Rights Reserved

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Is digital technology making politics impossible?

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Is digital technology making politics impossible?

Douglas Boggs Nov. 26, 2017

Is digital technology making politics impossible? The simple answer is yes, and no. It’s like asking“which came first, the chicken or the egg?” The answer just isn’t that simple.

There has always been a very close relationship between politics and technology. Governments fund the research that drives many birthing technologies that then help to create many of the problems with which the government then must eventually attempt to solve. It’s an inherent conundrum of the dog chasing the tail.

Technology has always seemed to have been a double edged sword when it comes to politics. It takes its shape in many forms. We can reference both Hitler and Roosevelt and their power and popularity with radio in order to present this point. Hitler’s intense emotional “Zeig Heil” speeches gave rise to the hands of the Nazi party, and Roosevelt’s friendly fireside chats allowed him to enter nearly all of the living rooms of America. We recall the first televised United States Presidential debate between Richard Nixon and John F. Kennedy helped to solidify the now well known catch phrase of “Never let them see you sweat.”  Of course, these types of arguments can always find a pro and con angle, although it would depend on which political platform one might be standing on.

Technology guides some political leaders to help them find solutions to their cause. Truman and the atomic bomb would be one of those examples. There was no reason these two bombs needed to be dropped onto the Japanese cities of Hiroshima or Nagasaki, on August 6th and 9th, 1945.  These two attacks killed hundreds of thousands of innocent lives and decimated generations with its fallout. It was only a few months before, in April 1945, that Hitler had been defeated and by only August of that year the world knew, as well as Japan, that the Japanese could no longer win. Also, at that same time Russia was retreating under their own internal collapse. World War II was ending and America was shining bright as ever. However, Truman felt the need to make a statement to the world of the dominance of American power.

It seemed that Truman felt his message would be better served through the massive annihilation of innocent lives rather than through the inevitable round table agreements of acquiescence to the new western dominance. This new technology created the Cold War that lasted decades. That continued quest of who is the biggest bully on the block. It defined the adage of whomever has the most destructive toys wins.

Technology and politics took a turn in the late fifties to a place where no man had gone before. We found ourselves fighting over space, that final frontier.

The technology racing toward the end of World War II was moving towards rockets. Nazi Germany was leading the way before they lost the war and the United States took their chief engineer named Von Braun. It was Von Braun’s dream to put a rocket on the moon and he didn’t seem to care who allowed him to accomplish the task. When Germany was defeated the United States captured Von Braun and most of his team, who later helped develop the American space programs and military missiles in America. Politics seemed to be holding its own with technology.

Having Von Braun helped the United States compete in the new space race of the “Cold War”. This push helped develop the computers that were necessary to put a man on the moon. Since the Russians got to space first, the Americans wanted the moon. As Von Braun did his work, IBM did theirs by creating the initial computer programs that would eventually put a man in space, and in the words of Frank Sinatra in 1964 “Fly Me to the Moon”, America did in July, 1969.

The space race created the satellite technology that followed with the new powerful computer programs. Technology was moving ahead seemingly exponentially and politics was its driving force. The United States was also began moving forward with a new idea, called the internet.

In the early 1960’s. The U.S. Dept. Of Defense began awarding contracts for packet network systems, including the development of ARPANET. This was an early packet switching network and the first to implement the protocol TCP/IP, which is the foundation of the internet. This research began in several different computer science labs around the United States, United Kingdom and France. The first message ever sent over the ARPANET was from computer science Professor Leonard Kleinrock’s lab at UCLA to the second network receiving at Stanford Research Institute.

In the beginning of the internet the digital technological platform was welcomed throughout the world and nearly everyone who could jumped in. It was the epitome of the freedom of information. The internet craze created instant millionaires and billionaires and was heralded as the way to level the expanding global playing field. Children in Nairobi could feesibly have access to the same information as a child in the United States. When this new technology began it was open, chaotic and de-centralized. It spanned the globe creating an international cross platform allowing people on opposite sides of the world the ability to share ideas and information with each other for free. It allowed borders to be crossed that had never been crossed before. It was this that soon made the governments to take notice and begin to get nervous.  Despite that it was the United States government that funded the invention of the architecture of the internet back in the 1960’s.

Not long after, in the 1980’s, at CERN, in Geneva, Switzerland, we find the British computer scientist Tim Berner-Lee and his creation of the World Wide Web. This technology included the rise of instant communication by email, instant messaging, VoIP telephone calls, video calls, discussion groups, blogs, and eventually leading to the powerful social media networks we have today. Some of those Social media giants in the United States include Facebook, Twitter, Google, and others.

Now, we’re in a world where the technology is about information. Digital information data is the gold standard in capitalism and in politics. Corporations capture and control information. If corporate interests, such as oil companies utilize their ability to control information on climate change, as an example, and are able to convince the public that climate change is a fraud and if successful at this manipulation of information then they are able to save billions or perhaps trillions of dollars in taxes, regulations and enjoy increased profits. Recently, we have seen evidence of acts such as this in the corporate world with Volkswagen defrauding their customers into thinking that their diesel cars produce lower carbon emissions than the company claimed to have said that they did. They got caught defrauding the public of over 11 million cars sold. We have also seen the evidence of information control or rather the attempt to control information in the political arena with President Richard Nixon and the Watergate scandal eventually ending in his impeachment.

When the people are well informed, they can be trusted with their own government.

Thomas Jefferson Paris-1789

Information is power. Corporations want it, governments want it, and people want it. Corporations want it in order to maximize their opportunity for profits. Governments want it to control the huddled masses. People want it to properly monitor what the governments and the corporations are doing in order to be able to appropriately hold those parties accountable for their wrongdoings against the people, the environment, and the freedom of information itself. With these three parties are desperately attempting to get along in the challenging digital world we now live in and information is under attack for domination, manipulation and control.

As it was with radio, telephone, television, print media, and film industries the internet companies quickly began consolidating as the big corporations swallowed up the small start-ups. This is the process of capitalism and it seems as though, referencing back to Econ101 that this is a good result.  However we have reached a point where there are now only 6 corporations that own nearly all of the radio and television networks in the United States. So, today these large media corporations are able to control most of the information that the general public sees and hears on a daily basis.  In fact, they control and can manipulate the messegaes that the public sees and hears by the minute.  These corporations also lobby the politicians and all political parties for favorable votes in order to deregulate their industry, or offer tax breaks in exchange for the large campaign contributions. This is where we begin to lose the line between freedom of the press, the independence of journalism and politicians acting in the best interests of their constituents rather than for the profits of the corporations.

The same kind of monopolies that were created through the deregulation of the telephone industry using the Telecommunications Act of 1996 has happened with the new social media/information companies today. The internet has become capitalized, monetized and monopolized and is now controlled by some of the largest corporations in the world who now subsequently control much of the information that feeds the minds the global populace. This is known as institutional corruption. The public has become complacent with such type of corruption that it is now considered to be a type of legal corruption rather than illegal corruption. Which undermines the overall effectiveness of government. Through this type of corruption it may result in corrupt means as to how congress funds elections or the message of politicians and even the political message and voting of entire political parties.

The internet was originally designed to be end to end, peer to peer and a way for the average person to communicate and organize without control by corporations or governments. This was the architecture of the internet from its inception. As the internet has grown to become such a powerful global force of the acquisition and delivering of information governments have been trying to find ways to keep their foot in the door in order to have more control over this technology. Can the internet be kept free from government censorship, control or manipulation? It depends on the country. Time will tell. We have already seen evidence that the United States government has used the accepted legal corruption process of listening to and recording every citizen’s telephone calls without consent or a warrant. The liberties of privacy, as defined under the Constitution, have been slowly eroding away.

With the release of volumes of classified documents by the whistleblower, Edward Snowden, we have come to find that our privacy has not only been under attack, but has been stolen.  Methodically over time the government and corporations have created a means to find out more about us than even we know ourselves and use that information without a warrant or our consent.  Politics and Technology can make interesting bed partners. We found that Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, ATT, T Mobile and other corporations were freely disseminating and delivering billions of terabits of information to the government about the lives of every American. Some people say, “That’s okay, I’m not doing anything wrong. As long as I am safe and our freedom is protected.” That naivete makes them fail to realize that their freedom is already deteriorating as these actions whittle away at the protections within the Constitution.

We, as a society, have come to accept a level of institutional corruption with our government rather than holding them accountable. Snowden simply pulled back the curtain and exposed the existing institutional corruption. As a society we were sold a line of information by the government who said they were doing it in the best interest of the people to keep us safe. Much of the public remain complacent and are simply too busy posting pictures of their lunch or cats rather than to use that same technology to create a groundswell of citizens rising up and holding our elected leader accountable for these actions. Although, with Egypt and Tunisia creating what became known as, the Arab Spring, taught us different and began to show the world the power of digital technology.

Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety”

Benjamin Franklin to the Pennsylvania Assembly 1775

Before President Trump was sworn into office he was already following President Obama’s lead using the power of digital media. Trump’s is a prolific Twitter “er” in order to communicate with his voters, fans, and followers. The President-elect began disseminating Tweets about his political views and possible upcoming policies all for the world to see. He quickly became known as the first President who would be Tweeting his politics 140 characters at a time. Certainly a new way of doing things. Many people agree that this is not the most appropriate way of leading the world. He breaks stride in the procedural processes of global politics as he proclaimed to his voters that he would do just that.

Wikileaks changed the game releasing its first document in December 2006 of a decision to assassinate government officials signed by a Somali political figure who was on the U.S terrorist list since 2001. Since then Wikileaks has released terabits of corporate, government and private citizen’s information. They make little effort to remove sensitive personal information. They continues to hold governments, politicians and corporations feet to the fire. It was in January, 2017, a Twitter account with Wikileaks released a press releases announcing in would create a data base of Twitter users. Twitter later released a statement saying “Twitter bans the use of Twitter data for “surveillance purposes.”

Trump has enough power in the volume of Twitter followers to make the mass media kowtow to his whimper. He has stated to the main stream media outlets that they were not being fair to him. If they continued to pose him in a negative way he will simply not allow them to interview him unless they can guarantee him a favorable view. As we will soon find with the Supreme Court vacancy to be filled with what he has promised to be a conservative judge the idea of free speech to be challenged. With a conservative Supreme Court, a Republican House and Senate, and Trump as President, this creates dangerous precedent that could find detrimental results to the First Amendment.

In order to truly answer this query of “is technology making politics impossible?”, we must keep both eyes open. In order to trust in technology we must be able to maintain the independence and transparency of the medium. This is our only hope to be able to hold governments accountable.

Google had been doing business in China with a version of its service that conformed to the government’s oppressive censorship policies. Google officials stated at the time that they felt the most ethical option was to offer some services, though restricted due to China’s censors. The company wanted to get their hands on the enormous Chinese market. The Chinese internet market sees twice the amount of people online in China than the entire population of the United States, and the numbers continue to grow. Google had been doing business for four years there before a cyberattack was discovered from within the country itself. Google found that the Gmail accounts of numerous Chinese human rights activists had been hacked, so they shut down their operation. Instead of complying with the Chinese regime and continue to censor their platform they chose to direct all of the Chinese traffic to an uncensored version of its search engine based in Hong Kong. The Chinese government reacted and this action in effect made Google’s services inaccessible to the hundreds of millions of internet users in a handful of weeks.

As digital technology has created a platform of disseminating information across the globe it is quite a balancing act for corporations to maintain their business practices and abide by all the varying countries laws and regulations. What is good for the goose is not always good for the gander. There are much more repressive governments than others around the globe and there are more variable ideas of what hate speech is or what exactly human rights are in one country than another.

The key to all of this is transparency?  People must be able to know if the content is being monitored and censored by the governments. The freedom and power of holding governments accountable is based on the depth of the information that the government is withholding from the people themselves and how the various media companies are complying with the specific governmental regulations that they are tasked with.

Twitter took a major step forward and created a process in Iran that is known as two-factor authentication. This is a login option that allows users with Iranian phone numbers to use two activation processes in order to access their services. This action created a higher level of security for the resistance of any governmental attempts to censor or access any of the user’s content.

We find that digital technology corporations are ahead of the curve in attempting to maintain a free and independent internet. However the battle remains. Politicians are not laying down to the technology. Across the globe there are varying levels of censorship and government control.

Have you ever wondered why in America we can no longer purchase Blackberry devices or service? But, we can see the President and other politicians using the device and service? This is due to the fact that the Canadian firm’s platform is so difficult, if not impossible, to hack. The United States government wanted to be able to have access to these devices just as Snowden exposed to the extent that they have access to all other carriers and devices. But, the Canadian firm would not budge to the American government terms. So, we see our politicians using unhackable devices while “we the people attempting to form a more perfect union” are left with devices and services that the NSA can monitor, record, and even turn on and off remotely. Benjamin Franklin would be rolling over in his grave.

The politics is clear that the government has no problem with acquiring more information through the legal corruption of our individual rights and freedoms as outlined in the Constitution. And so far the people have made it clear that they don’t seem to mind as long as they are “safe and free.” From the political side of things digital technology doesn’t seem to make politics impossible. But we are only a few Tweets away from this new President to see if there is another side to this story.

SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY

1.. https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/oct/31/politics-digital-technology-brexit-donald-trump

2.  http://spectrum.ieee.org/static/grokking-democracy-a-political-world-transformed-by-digital-technology

3. http://text-patterns.thenewatlantis.com/2016/10/social-media-emotion-and-politics.html

4. https://books.google.com/books?id=kujHAAAAQBAJ&pg=PA3&lpg=PA3&dq=are+digital+technologies+making+politics+impossible&source=bl&ots=VbGlXxmoQ5&sig=pQGsDC6weVBb48TCCciQcZkdu2w&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwj0tqG_g7_QAhUFxmMKHVSeDv44HhDoAQhIMAk#v=onepage&q=are%20digital%20technologies%20making%20politics%20impossible&f=false

5. https://books.google.com/books?id=CE2VGH7wJcYC&pg=PA58&lpg=PA58&dq=are+digital+technologies+making+politics+impossible&source=bl&ots=Idh6CRuLTE&sig=QfMHFfZ9R3Mzn7Zo42-WRWNA-1c&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwi7gsXtg7_QAhVQ4mMKHQ_MCHY4KBDoAQhIMAk#v=onepage&q=are%20digital%20technologies%20making%20politics%20impossible&f=false

6. Four Horsemen – Amazon Video

7. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/9624860/Douglas-Carswell-How-technology-will-create-true-democracy.html

8. https://www.accenture.com/us-en/insight-outlook-how-digital-technologies-are-changing-the-way-we-work

9. http://www.forbes.com/sites/gregsatell/2016/03/13/is-digital-technology-making-us-any-better-off-one-prominent-economist-says-no-and-he-may-be-right/#211c13132fa0

10. http://educationcommission.org/voices/commission-voices/making-the-impossible-possible-by-baela-raza-jamil/

11. http://www.pewinternet.org/2009/09/01/the-internet-and-civic-engagement/

12. https://www.bbvaopenmind.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/BBVA-OpenMind-book-Change-19-key-essays-on-how-internet-is-changing-our-lives-Technology-Internet-Innovation.pdf

13. https://greenallianceblog.org.uk/2015/02/11/why-greens-should-embrace-digital-technology-but-not-abandon-politics/

14. http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2013/05/27/change-the-world

15. http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/it-moral-values/

16. http://civichall.org/civicist/political-debates-more-responsive-public-needs/

17. https://www.boundary2.org/2015/11/how-we-think-about-technology-without-thinking-about-politics/

18. http://www.researchinlearningtechnology.net/index.php/rlt/article/view/21366

19. https://is.muni.cz/el/1423/podzim2013/SAN236/um/Lister_a_spol_New_Media_A_Critical_Introducion.pdf

20. Mobs, Messiahs, Markets – Bonner/Rajiva

21. Bionomics – Rothschild

22. http://civichall.org/civicist/political-debates-more-responsive-public-needs/

23. https://www.utwente.nl/bms/vandijk/research/itv/itv_plaatje/Digital%20Democracy-%20Vision%20and%20Reality.pdf

24. http://qz.com/95696/you-probably-didnt-read-the-most-telling-part-of-orwells-1984-the-appendix/

25. 1984 – George Orwell

26. http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2015/07/03/federal-cybersecurity-opm-hack-not-impenetrable/29468695/

27. Blackberry – government uses but not public

28. http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/12/20/technology-and-health-_n_2338439.html

29. https://www.uta.edu/huma/agger/fastcapitalism/5_2/Giroux5_2.html

30. Arab Spring

31. http://www.hillwatch.com/PPRC/Quotes/Internet_and_Politics.aspx

32. http://www.nbcnews.com/id/15221095/ns/technology_and_science-privacy_lost/t/privacy-under-attack-does-anybody-care/

33. https://www.theguardian.com/business/2016/nov/21/google-facebook-brexit-uk-technology-sector-skills

34. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-switch/wp/2016/06/24/how-brexit-affects-the-global-technology-industry/

35. http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/2012/09/2012919115344299848.html

36. http://journalistsresource.org/studies/international/global-tech/research-arab-spring-internet-key-studies

37. http://www.journalism.org/2012/11/28/role-social-media-arab-uprisings/

38. http://www.economist.com/blogs/erasmus/2016/05/after-uprisings

39. https://www.library.cornell.edu/colldev/mideast/Role%20of%20Social%20Media%20During%20the%20Arab%20Spring.pdf

40. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/19/books/review/how-an-egyptian-revolution-began-on-facebook.html

42. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_the_Internet

43. http://philhoward.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Democracys-Fourth-Wave-First-3-Chapters.pdf

44. https://techcrunch.com/2016/12/14/donald-trump-meets-with-tech-leaders/

45. http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2016/01/why-google-quit-china-and-why-its-heading-back/424482/

46. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tim_Berners-Lee

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Space_Race
  2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elon_Musk

 

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I welcome those reading my story. I appreciate all of the emails I have been receiving. I also appreciate those who have registered and subscribe to this blog. If you have come from Facebook please comment on this site, rather than any Facebook post of this page due to the fact that there are many readers who are not part of Facebook forums, or even Facebook itself. I encourage all readers to put their comments on this site so that all of the information will be accessible to all readers from all parts of the internet. I urge you to join this site and receive the RSS feed, or bookmarking us, sharing us with your friends on Facebook and Twitter. If you know of anyone who might benefit from this information I urge you to pass on this website address! Share and let’s make some change together!

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The Bedroom Antics of Technology and Politics!

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Are the bedroom antics of technology and politics making politics impossible? The simple answer yes, and no. It’s like asking “which came first, the chicken or the egg?” The answer just isn’t that simple.

There has always been a very close relationship between politics and technology. Governments fund the research that drives many birthing technologies that then help to create many of the problems with which the government eventually wishes to solve. It’s an inherent conundrum of the dog chasing the tail.

Technology has always seemed to have been a double edged sword when it comes to politics. It takes its shape in many forms. We can reference both Hitler and Roosevelt and their power and popularity with radio. Hitler’s intense emotional “Zeig Heil” speeches that gave rise to the hands of the Nazi party, and Roosevelt’s friendly fireside chats where he entered nearly all of the living rooms of America. We recall the first televised United States Presidential debate between Richard Nixon and John F. Kennedy helping solidify the well known catch phrase of “Never let them see you sweat.” These types of arguments can always find a pro and con angle, although it would simply depend on which political platform one might be standing on.

Technology guides some leaders to help them find solutions to their cause. Truman and the atomic bomb would be one of those examples. There was no reason these two bombs needed to be dropped onto the Japanese cities of Hiroshima or Nagasaki, on August 6th and 9th, 1945, killing hundreds of thousands of innocent lives and decimating generations with its fallout. It was only a few months before, in April 1945, that Hitler had been defeated. By August of that year the world knew, as well as, Japan that the Japanese could no longer win. Also, at that time Russia was retreating under their own internal collapse. World War II was ending and America was shining bright. However, Truman felt the need to make a statement to the world of the dominance of American power.

It seemed that Truman felt his message would be better served through the massive anhiliation of innocent lives rather than through the inevitable round table agreements of acquiesence to western dominance. This new technology created the cold war that lasted decades. That continued quest of who is the biggest bully on the block. It defined the adage of whomever has the most destructive toys wins.

Technology and politics took a turn in the late fifties to a place where no man has gone before. We found ourselves fighting over space, that final frontier.

The technology race toward the end of World War II was moving towards rockets. Nazi Germany was leading the way before they lost the war and the United States took their chief engineer named Von Braun. It was Von Braun’s dream to put a rocket on the moon and he didn’t seem to care who allowed him to accomplish the task. When Germany was defeated the United States captured Von Braun and most of his team, who later helped develop the space programs and military missiles in America. Politics seemed to be holding its own with technology.

Having Von Braun helped the United States compete in the new space race of the new “cold war”. This push helped create the computer industries that were necessary to put a man on the moon. Since the Russians got to space first, the Americans wanted the moon. As Von Braun did his work, IBM did theirs by creating the initial computer programs that would eventually put a man in space, and in the words of Frank Sinatra in 1964 “Fly Me to the Moon”, which America did in July, 1969.

The space race created the satellite craze that followed with the new powerful computer programs. Technology was moving ahead quickly and politics was its driving force. The United States was also moving forward with a new idea called the internet.

The U.S. Dept. Of Defense began awarding contracts in the early 1960’s for packet network systems, including the development of ARPANET. This was an early packet switching network and the first to implement the protocol TCP/IP, which is the foundation of the internet. This research began in several different computer science labs around the United States, United Kingdom and France. The first message ever sent over the ARPANET was from computer science Professor Leonard Kleinrock’s lab at UCLA to the second network receiving at Stanford Research Institute.

In the beginning of the internet the digital technological platform was welcomed throughout the world and nearly everyone who could jumped in. It was the epitome of the freedom of information. The internet craze created instant millionaires and billionaires and was heralded as the way to level the expanding global playing field. Children in Nairobi could feasibly have access to the same information as a child in the United States. When this new technology began it was open, chaotic and de-centralized. It spanned the globe creating an international cross platform allowing people on opposite sides of the world the ability to share ideas and information with each other for free. It allowed borders to be crossed that had never been crossed before. It was this that made the governments begin to take notice and begin to get nervous, despite that it was the United States government that funded the invention of the architecture of the internet back in the 1960’s.

It the 1980’s, at CERN, in Geneva, Switzerland we find British computer scientist Tim Berner-Lee’s creation of the World Wide Web. This technology included the rise of instant communication by email, instant messaging, VoIP telephone calls, video calls, discussion groups, blogs, and eventually leading to the powerful social media networks we have today. Some of those Social media giants in the United States include Facebook, Twitter, Google, and others.

Now, we’re in a world where the technology is about information. Digital information data is the gold standard in capitalism and in politics. Corporations capture and control information. If corporate interests, such as oil companies utilize their ability to control information on climate change, as an example, and are able to convince the public that climate change is a fraud and if successful at this manipulation of information then they are able to save billions or perhaps trillions of dollars in taxes, regulations and increased profits. Recently, we have seen evidence of acts such as this in the corporate world with Volkswagon defrauding their customers into thinking that their diesel cars produce lower carbon emissions than the company claimed to have said that they did. They got caught defrauding the public of over 11 million cars sold. We have also seen the evidence of information control or rather the attempt to control information in the political arena with President Richard Nixon and the Watergate scandal eventually ending in his impeachment.

 

When the people are well informed, they can be trusted with their own government.

Thomas Jefferson Paris-1789

 

Information is power. Corporations want it, governments want it, and people want it. Corporations want it in order to maximize their opportunity for profits. Governments want it in order to control the huddled masses. People want it in order to know what the governments and the corporations are doing in order to be able to appropriately hold those parties accountable for those wrongdoings against the people, the environment, and the freedom of information itself. These three parties are desperately attempting to get along in the challenging digital world we now live in. Information is under attack.

As it was with radio, telephone, television, print media, and film industries it quickly began consolodating as big corporations swallowed up small start-ups. This is the process of capitalism and it seems as though this is a good result, however we have reached a point where there are only 6 corporations that own nearly all of the radio and television networks in the United States. So, today these large media corporations are able to control most of the information and lobby politicians and political parties for votes to deregulate their industry or for tax breaks in exchange for large campaign contributions. This is where we begin to lose the line between freedom of the press and independent journalism and politicians acting in the best interests of their constituents rather than the profits of the corporations.

The same kind of monopolies that were created through the deregulation of the telephone industry has happened with the new social media/information companies today. The internet has become capitalized, monetized and monopolized and controlled by some of the largest corporations in the world who now subsequently control the information that feeds the minds the global populace. This is known as institutional corruption. The public has become complacent with such type of corruption that it is now considered to be a type of legal corruption rather than illegal corruption. Which undermines the overall effectiveness of government. Through this type of corruption it may result in corrupt means as to how congress funds elections or the message of politicians and even the political message and voting of entire political parties.

The internet was originally designed to be end to end, peer to peer and a way for the average person to communicate and organize without control by corporations or governments. This was the architecture of the internet from its inception. As the internet has grown to become such a powerful global force of the acquisition and delivering of information governments have been trying to find ways to keep their foot in the door to have more control over this technology. Can the internet be kept free from government censorship, control or manipulation? It depends on the country. Time will tell. We have already seen evidence that the United States government has used the accepted legal corruption process of listening to and recording every citizen’s telephone calls without consent or a warrant. The liberties of privacy as defined under the constitution have been slowly eroding away.

With the release of the documents by the whistle-blower, Edward Snowden, we have come to find that our privacy has not only been under attack, but has been stolen. Politics and Technology can make interesting bed partners. We found that Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, ATT, T Mobile and other corporations were disseminating and delivering billions of terabites of information to the government about the lives of every American. Some people say, “That’s okay, I’m not doing anything wrong. As long as I am safe and our freedom is protected.” What they fail to realize is that their freedom is already deteriorating as these actions whittle away at the protections within the Constitution.

We as a society have come to accept a level of institutional corruption with our government rather than holding them accountable. Snowden simply pulled back the curtain and exposed the existing institutional corruption. As a society we were sold a line of information by the government who said they were doing it in the best interest of the people to keep them safe. Much of the public remained complacent and are too busy posting pictures of their lunch or cats in order to use that same technology to create a groundswell of people rising up and holding our elected leader accountable for these actions. Although, Egypt and Tunisia and the Arab Spring taught us different and began to show the world the power of digital technology.

 

Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety”

Benjamin Franklin to the Pennsylvania Assembly 1775

 

Before President Trump was sworn into office he was already following President Obama’s lead using the power of digital media. Trump’s is a prolific Twitter “er” to communicate with his voters, fans, and followers. The President-elect began disseminating Tweets about his political views and possible upcoming policies all for the world to see. He quickly became known as the first President who would be Tweeting his politics 140 characters at a time. Certainly a new way of doing things. Many people agree that this is not the most appropriate way of leading the world. He breaks stride in the procedural processes of global politics.

Wikileaks changed the geopolitical game by releasing their first document in December 2006 of a decision to assassinate government officials signed by a Somali political figure who was on the U.S terrorist list since 2001. Since then Wikileaks has released terabites of corporate, government and private citizen’s information. They make little effort to remove sensitive personal information. They continue to hold governments, politicians and corporations feet to the fire. In January 2017, a Wikileaks Twitter account stated it would create a data base of Twitter users which would include sensitive personal information, homes families and finances. Twitter bans the use of Twitter data for “surveillance purposes,” stating “Posting another person’ private and confidential information is a violation of the Twitter rules.” Wikileaks’ official Twitter page has disavowed that Twitter account.

Trump has enough power in the volume of Twitter followers to make the mass media kowtow to his whimper. He stated to the main stream media outlets that they were not being fair to him. If they continued to pose him in a negative way he will simply not allow them to interview him unless they can guarantee him a favorable view. As we will soon find with the Supreme Court vacancy to be filled with what he has promised to be a conservative judge the idea of free speech will be challenged. With a conservative Supreme Court, a Republican House and Senate, and Trump as President, this creates dangerous precedent that could find detrimental results to the First Amendment.

In order to truly answer this query we must keep both eyes open. In order to trust in technology we must be able to maintain the independence and transparancy of the medium. This is our only hope to be able to hold governments accountable.

Google had been doing business in China with a version of its service that conformed to the government’s oppressive censorship policies. Google officials stated at the time that they felt the most ethical option was to offer some services, though restricted due to China’s censors. The company wanted to get their hands on the enormous Chinese market. The are twice the amount of people in China on the internet that the entire population of the United States, and the numbers continue to grow. Google had been doing business for four years there before a cyber attack was discovered from within the country itself. Google found that the Gmail accounts of numerous Chinese human rights activists had been hacked so they shut down their operation. Instead of complying with the Chinese regime and continue to censor their platform they chose to direct all of the Chinese traffic to an uncensored version of its search engine based in Hong Kong. The Chinese government reacted and this action in effect made Google’s services inaccessible to the hundreds of millions of internet users in a handful of weeks.

As digital technology has created a platform of disseminating information across the globe it is quite a balancing act for corporations to maintain their business practices and abide by all the varying countries laws and regulations. What is good for the goose is not always good for the gander. There are much more repressive governments than others and as an example more variable ideas of what hate speech is or what exactly human rights are in one country than another.

The key to all of this is transparency. People must be able to know if the content is being monitored and censored by the governments. The freedom and power of holding governments accountable is based on the depth of the information that the government is withholding from the people themselves and how the various media companies are complying with the specific governmental regulations that they are tasked with.

Twitter took a major step forward and created a process in Iran that is known as two-factor authentication. This is a login option that allows users with Iranian phone numbers to use two activation processes in order to access their services. This action created a higher level of security for the resistance of any governmental attempts to censor or access any of the user’s content.

We find that digital technology corporations are ahead of the curve in attempting to maintain a free and independent internet. However the battle remains. Politicians are not laying down to the technology. Across the globe there are varying levels of censorship and government control.

Have you ever wondered why in America we can no longer purchase Blackberry devices or service? But, we can see the President and other politicians using the device and service? This is due to the fact that the Canadian firm’s platform is so difficult to hack. The United States government wanted to be able to have access to these devices just as Snowden exposed the extent that they have access to all other carriers and devices. But, the Canadian firm would not budge to the American government terms. So, we see our politicians using unhackable devices while “we the people attempting to form a more perfect union” are left with devices and services that the NSA can monitor, record, and even turn on and off remotely. Benjamin Franklin would be rolling over in his grave.

The politics is clear that the government has no problem with acquiring more information through the legal corruption of our individual rights and freedoms as outlined in the Constitution. And so far the people have made it clear that they don’t seem to mind as long as they are “safe and free.” From the political side of things digital technology doesn’t seem to make politics impossible. But we are only a few Tweets away from this new President to see if there is another side to this story.

 

* * * * * * * * * *

I welcome those reading my story. I appreciate all of the emails I have been receiving. I also appreciate those who have registered and subscribe to this blog. If you have come from Facebook please comment on this site, rather than any Facebook post of this page due to the fact that there are many readers who are not part of Facebook forums, or even Facebook itself. I encourage all readers to put their comments on this site so that all of the information will be accessible to all readers from all parts of the internet. I urge you to join this site, to receive the RSS feed, or bookmarking us, sharing us with your friends on Facebook and Twitter. If you know of anyone who might benefit from this information I urge you to pass on this website address! Share and let’s make some change together!

Thank you for stopping by.

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©2014-2017 Doug Boggs All Rights Reserved

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