DHS Announces Program to ILLEGALLY Scan Our Faces And They’re Forcing Us To Pay For It

Both Congress and the Department of Homeland Security have never justified the biometric scanners at airports that could cost Americans $1 billion in 2018.
As TSA agents continue to prove their incompetence in the ‘War on Terror,’ the Department of Homeland Security is now allocating $1 billion in taxpayer funding to create a facial recognition program that will illegally scan Americans’ faces.
A study conducted by Georgetown Law’s Center for Privacy and Technology looked at the biometric scanners that are creating an inventory of the faces of individuals leaving the country at airports across the United States. While they are only at certain major airports right now, the full implementation of these scanners could cost Americans up to $1 billion.
The study noted that while the ‘9/11 Response and Biometric Exit Account’ created by Congress has the funds for the program, ‘neither Congress nor DHS has ever justified the need for the program.’
In addition to the fact that Congress has never provided a reason why the system is needed in the U. S., the study claimed that DHS has ‘repeatedly questioned ‘the additional value biometric air exit would provide’ compared with the status quo and the ‘overall value and cost of a biometric air exit capability,’ even as it has worked to build it.’
Not only is a government agency pouring $1 billion into a program to increase the country’s security measures even though it lacks full confidence, and has no evidence that the program it is implementing will do so, there is also the fact that the program requires Americans to give up their civil liberties, and it has never been explicitly authorized by the government. As the researchers from Georgetown Law noted:

This post was published at shtfplan on December 28th, 2017.

Star Wars: Disney Has Ruined It

I saw The Last Jedi on opening night.
I enjoyed the film. But with that said, let me offer the following: Disney has ruined the franchise.
Oh, don’t get me wrong — the cinematography was excellent. The use of CGI unobtrusive and convincing. Lighting, sound, right up the line where you expect it to be.
But then the troubles started, and they’re all related to the story.
Disney has infused this with just too much bull**** — and layered plenty of SJW crap on top.
If you haven’t seen it yet don’t read any further, as there are a lot of spoilers in here. Then again, there’s not really much to spoil when it comes to the story, so I’m not sorry — not one bit.
Let me preface most of this by saying that when I go see a science fiction film these days I expect rank violations of the Laws of Physics. Artificial gravity within ships, for example, so we don’t all need magnetic boots or a vessel that rotates to produce centrifugal force. Force fields (not the least of which are necessary for navigational deflectors, lest a grain of sand in space puncture your nice ship and let all the air out!) Drive systems we can’t really explain, but which have plausible explanations that are at least consistent within the story (hyperdrives, for example.)

This post was published at Market-Ticker on 2017-12-28.

Why Twitter, Facebook and Google Are the Antisocial Networks

In today’s Outside the Box we resume our eight-part Strategic Investment Conference Speaker Series with my friend Niall Ferguson, senior fellow of the Hoover Institution at Stanford and the Center for European Studies at Harvard. Niall has a cautionary tale for us on the topic of social networks.
The problem, in a nutshell:
Facebook certainly made an impact last year, but not quite the impact the young Zuckerberg had in mind in his Harvard dorm. A committed believer in globalisation who tends to wear his liberal politics on his T-shirt sleeve, Zuckerberg is reeling. Not only did the masterminds behind the Brexit and Trump campaigns successfully use Facebook advertising to hone and target their ultimately victorious campaign messages; worse, the Russian government appears to have used Facebook in the same way, seeking to depress voter support for Hillary Clinton. Worse still, neo-Nazis seem to have been using the social network to spread their own distinctive brand of hate.
Niall – ever the history prof – can’t help chiding Mr. Zuckerberg on his choice of majors at Harvard:
Yet the architects of the biggest social networks to have existed should not have been surprised. If he had studied history at Harvard rather than psychology and computer science, Zuckerberg might have foreseen the ways in which Facebook and its ilk would be used and abused.

This post was published at Mauldin Economics on DECEMBER 27, 2017.