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Hometown: GA
Home country: USA
Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 11,976

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I would do anything for my country! (just about)

(Apologies if this has been posted here before -- I just came across it on Reddit.)

I can't say no to Jill.

I get a slew of emails from the Biden campaign and the DNC every day. I can't contribute every damn time I get one of these. For one thing, I have to save some money for the DU Grovelbot!

But today, when I got an email with a message from Jill Biden, I caved! I encourage you to do the same if you can:

Friends --

Eight years ago, I spoke at the Democratic National Convention. I was proud to speak then not only as the wife of our Vice President, but as a full-time teacher and a military mom.

A lot has changed since then, but three things are still true: I’m still teaching, I’m still a proud military mother, and I still know that Joe will fight for every American, every day.

Later tonight, I’ll address the Democratic National Convention again, after we formally name my husband as our party’s candidate for President of the United States. I’m excited to share with the world, once more, the story of our family and Joe’s vision for our future.

But right now, there’s something I have to ask: can you make your first donation to Joe’s campaign before I speak tonight?

Yep, we're the graphics experts

Poster on Reddit captioned this The sign on my husbands graphic design department

Welcome to the United States of Alabama

Welcome to the United States of Alabama
By Kyle Whitmire, al.com

Robert Bentley told a lot of lies when he was Alabama’s governor, and except for the big one about his love life, he never caught so much hell for fibbing as he did the time he told the truth.

“Our education system in this state sucks,” he told a conference of regional economic developers in 2016.


Alabama lags in a lot of national rankings, usually landing at or near the bottom of basic, objective measurements of quality of life. The harder thing to explain is why people here accept this.

In a place that could face the truth, people might shake off that collective embarrassment and try to do something about it. Civic leaders, elected officials and public employees of every stripe would unite behind the singular goal of raising our standards. Citizens would expect better, demand better, and send anyone packing who didn’t do better. People would care.


Being complacent in failure used to be an Alabama thing.

Now it’s becoming an American thing, too.

The United States has failed to deal with the coronavirus crisis. This week, the world passed 20 million confirmed cases. Even though we have just a smidge over 4 percent of the world’s population, the U.S. accounts for 25 percent of those coronavirus cases and 22 percent of coronavirus deaths. Every other wealthy nation is doing a better job getting this thing under control. But not us.

But what’s more remarkable is how many folks seem OK with these facts or are willing to pretend they aren’t real.


This isn’t American exceptionalism. It’s American acceptin'-ism.

We’ve become accepting of failure.

We’ve become accepting of being worse.

We’ve become accepting of lagging behind.

Because it’s easier to tell ourselves that we’re better than everyone else than it is to be better than everyone else.

The good news is that there’s a fix for this. Just as Mississippi came to grips with its sagging test scores and scrounged its way above Alabama in national rankings, we can change our mindset and our expectations. We can do the work. We can demand better.

Or we can surrender to the White House entertainment complex and its silly sideshows made to distract from its incompetence.

More at link: https://www.al.com/news/2020/08/welcome-to-the-united-states-of-alabama.html

Of course, the one thing he's leaving out is that it's the poor, black counties that are hit the hardest by the shoddy educational system and all the other hallmarks of a system founded on inequality.

Whoops, our bad, we may have 'accidentally' let Google Home devices record your every word, sound

Whoops, our bad, we may have 'accidentally' let Google Home devices record your every word, sound – oops
- The Register, Aug. 8, 2020

In brief Your Google Home speaker may have been quietly recording sounds around your house without your permission or authorization, it was revealed this week.

The Chocolate Factory admitted it had accidentally turned on a feature that allowed its voice-controlled AI-based assistant to activate by itself and record its surroundings. Normally, the device only starts actively listening in and making a note of what it hears after it has heard wake words, such as “Ok, Google” or “Hey, Google,” for privacy reasons. Prior to waking, it's constantly listening out for those words, but is not supposed to keep a record of what it hears.

Yet punters noticed their Google Homes had been recording random sounds, without any wake word uttered, when they started receiving notifications on their phone that showed the device had heard things like a smoke alarm beeping, or glass breaking in their homes – all without their approval.

Google said the feature had been accidentally turned on during a recent software update, and it has now been switched off, Protocol reported. It may be that this feature is or was intended to be used for home security at some point: imagine the assistant waking up whenever it hears a break in, for instance. Google just bought a $450m, or 6.6 per cent, stake in anti-burglary giant ADT, funnily enough.

How to Stop Your Google Home From Recording All Your Conversations - How-To Geek
Google's privacy controls on recordings change. What that means for your Google Home - CNET
Your Google Home smart speaker might have been listening to more than you thought - Daily Express

Stop sign tyranny: Great LTE!

From the Longmont (Colorado) Times-Call, July 25, 2020:
On the tyranny of stop signs
To be clear: I am not anti-stop sign. I am, however, against mandated stop sign usage. The media narrative that people like me are silly or irresponsible is both offensive and further shows the constant attack against my feelings and desire to avoid inconvenience. I stand against big government, and I will never apologize for being a freedom fighter as I blast through any intersection necessary.

While data show that stop signs may be useful for limiting traffic accidents, injuries, and death, that data is easily proven to be a media conspiracy to thwart our collective freedoms. Despite having stop signs for decades now, people still die frequently in automobile accidents. If stop signs were effective, there would be no more accidents. Instead, big government and mainstream media push this narrative of “safety” as a manner of restricting freedom of movement.

If I am in a rush to get to work, I may not have time to consider stop signs. The government cannot tell me that I need to stop, that I cannot be on time to earn my money. If a legitimate need for stop signs existed, our Founding Fathers would have placed them in the Constitution. Overarching mandates are a slap in the face to figures like George Washington, who wrote that no government ought to interfere with the movement and safety of citizens: on foot, horse, or vehicle.

Anyone who wants to use stop signs can go ahead and use their brakes. I, however, do not believe everyone should be beholden to this tyranny. Let the people choose!

In summary: Wear your masks — a symbol of freedom for others to live. In a world where uncertainty reigns, this basic act of humanity cannot be plagued with childish defiance.

Cayden Stice, Longmont

Link: https://www.timescall.com/2020/07/25/letters-stop-sign-tyranny/

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