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Female Founder Secrets: Fertility

Hacker News - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 12:28

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Categories: Geek

The Two Real Reasons the House Cancelled Today’s Session, Which Was An Understandable, But Really Bad Idea

Balloon Juice - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 12:24

Earlier this morning Anne Laurie highlighted that the House of Representatives would be taking today off because of a threat assessment, based on intelligence collected from social media and other sources, that some group of right wing violent domestic extremists – white supremacists, neo-NAZIs, armed and illegal paramilitary groups (aka “militias” and “patriot” groups), and/or other anti-government extremists – working off of a historically bonkers QAnon drop that is itself rooted in sovereign citizen (anti-government extremist) bullshit that 4 March is the real inauguration day and that since today is 4 March, Donald J. Trump is going to be inaugurated for his second term today. And that to celebrate, these anti-American violent domestic extremists were planning on attacking the Capitol again to kill as many members of Congress as possible. Or as members of the Bundy family call it: Thursday.

Just a few minutes ago, not realizing that he’d fallen for my nefariously cunning plan to turn him into my warm up routine, Mistermix asked the following question:

My second question is why the Capital is not ringed with soldiers, why every member and staffer doesn’t have an armed escort, and why some kind of armored vehicles aren’t patrolling streets around the building so the House can meet today?  (The Senate is in session, which makes little sense if you’re closing the House for a threat.)  Is not capitulating to terrorists reserved for foreign terrorists only?

There are two reasons that the House decided to cancel, even though the Capitol is nominally open for business given the pandemic protocols and the US Senate – the world’s greatest deliberative country club – is in session. Both reasons are different types of insider threats. An insider threat is defined as:

An insider threat is any person with authorized access to any U.S. Government resources, including personnel, facilities, information, equipment, networks, or systems, who uses that access either wittingly or unwittingly to do harm to the security of the U.S.

This threat can include damage to the U.S. through espionage, terrorism, unauthorized disclosure of national security information, or through the loss or degradation of government, company, contract or program information, resources or capabilities.

The first of these insider threats is from within the Capitol Police specifically and Federal law enforcement in general. Right now there are six officers from the Capitol Police Department that are suspended and another twenty-nine who are under investigation as part of the ongoing investigations into the 6 January insurrection at the Capitol. As a result, there is a very real worry that members of the Capitol Police may be sympathetic to these violent domestic extremists or, even worse, actually subjectively or objectively affiliated with them. It was reported yesterday that a DEA agent from LA has been suspended pending the outcome of an investigation into his activities during the insurrection at the Capitol on 6 January. There is a credible threat of both specific insider threats within the Capitol Police Department and a general concern that there may be additional insider threats within and throughout other Federal law enforcement agencies. This means that those who work in the Capitol – from elected members of both chambers to their staffs to the committee staffs to the staff that just keep the building running for everyone else – may be at risk from those who are supposed to be protecting them.

The second insider threat is from members of the House Republican Caucus and/or members of their staff. Within hours of the attack on the Capitol, Democratic members of the House, led by Congresswoman Mikie Sherill, alleged that Republican members of the House and/or their staff gave reconnaissance tours to the insurrectionists in the days leading up to the attack.  Congressman Tim Ryan, who chairs the sub-committee with oversight over the Capitol complex itself, indicated last week that this question is now under active investigation by the US Attorney’s Office for the District of Colombia:

Ryan also told reporters the issue of “reconnaissance tours” given by members of Congress to alleged rioters before the attack was now “in the hands of the U.S. attorney here in D.C.”

He said they were “reviewing the footage.”

In this case the concern is that there are members of the House of Representatives, specifically the House Republican caucus, or members of their staffs who aided and abetted the insurrectionists in planning and facilitating the domestic terrorist attack on the Capitol on 6 January. One of the reasons that this investigation has to be done by reviewing footage and not reviewing visitor log details is because there are no visitor logs right now as the Capitol is closed to visitors under the pandemic control protocols that have been put into place. Ordinarily everyone who enters for one of these member or member’s staff given tours has to provide a significant amount of personally identifying information (PII) that would be logged into the system and cross referenced against who was escorting them, for what purposes, and the day, date, and time of entry and departure. That information isn’t available for this investigation because none of the members or their staffs are supposed to be giving tours, which makes it a perfect time to aide and abet surveillance ahead of a domestic terrorist attack by taking advantage of the normal record keeping process being suspended.

Given these two potential and suspected insider threats, it is perfectly understandable why the House would go into recess for the week a day early. It is also a terrible decision for all that it makes perfect sense. Every time one or more of these specific domestic extremists, domestic extremist group, or the members of the Republican House or Senate caucus who have decided to either represent them or indulge them in the hopes of electoral success (Senator Micro Rubio is definitely in the latter category), make a threat and get a response to them that is a rewards for making a threat, they win. Moreover, they learn that making a threat or actually carrying out a threat – stalking, harassing, and verbally assaulting members of the House or Senate, attacking the Capitol or a member’s office back in their districts and states, doing the same thing at the state and municipal levels, etc – they receive reinforcement not just for their revanchist, reactionary anti-American, and anti-constitutional beliefs, but for the actions they take to make those beliefs real. The more rewards and reinforcement they receive, the more they will engage in these behaviors and others will be inspired and motivated to adopt these beliefs and behaviors for themselves.

And that is why this moment is very different and uniquely dangerous compared to previous moments of hyper-polarization in US politics. Normally we would all want to try to make a distinction, painting with a very fine brush if you will, between those who hold ideologically extreme views, but work within the existing political system and processes to achieve their goals and those who hold those same views, but advocate and undertake the use of violence to achieve the same goals. We would want to do this because by channeling even those with ideologically extreme views through the existing political system and process it keeps them both in touch with those that don’t hold their views, exposes them to counter-arguments, and uses the system to temper their extremism by using the systems and processes to prevent their extremist beliefs from becoming extremist outcomes. This moment is unique, however, because that is both not possible and because the system is not working to do that. Hawley, Cruz, Cotton, Lee, Johnson, Grassley, McConnell, Graham, Tuberville, and almost thirty other Republicans in the Senate and Greene, Boebert, Cawthorne, Gaetz, Jordan, McCarthy, Scalise, and almost 140 other Republicans in the House have all made it explicitly clear that if the existing political system and processes won’t produce the outcomes that they prefer, that they are perfectly happy to subvert them and if that doesn’t work destroy them to achieve their objectives. Moreover, they are using the threats of and actual violence and terrorism by the violent domestic extremists to justify their actions and achieve their objectives. This is not one or two ideological fellow travelers that happened to just get elected and are not able to accomplish much. This is an insider threat from within the Republican House and Senate caucuses that make up a majority of the GOP caucus in the House and between a third and half of the Republican caucus in the Senate.

These two insider threats are the answer to MisterMix’s question.

Open thread!

The post The Two Real Reasons the House Cancelled Today’s Session, Which Was An Understandable, But Really Bad Idea appeared first on Balloon Juice.

Categories: Politics

Senators Call on FCC To Quadruple Base High-Speed Internet Speeds

Slashdot - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 12:23
The federal government's definition of high-speed broadband has remained stagnant over the last six years, sitting at 25Mbps down and 3Mbps up since 2015. But faced with pandemic-fueled network loads and a new push for infrastructure spending, lawmakers are getting ready to upgrade that definition. In a letter to government leaders Thursday, a bipartisan group of senators called for a quadrupling of base high-speed broadband delivery speeds making 100Mbps down and 100Mbps up the new base for high-speed broadband. From a report: "Going forward, we should make every effort to spend limited federal dollars on broadband networks capable of providing sufficient download and upload speeds and quality," Sens. Michael Bennet (D-CO), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Angus King (I-ME), and Rob Portman (R-OH) wrote to the FCC and other agencies. "There is no reason federal funding to rural areas should not support the type of speeds used by households in typical well-served urban and suburban areas." The letter calls on the FCC and other agencies to change their definitions of "high speed broadband" to anything above 100Mbps down and 100Mbps up -- a shift that would prohibit the FCC from identifying an area as being served with broadband unless it met those speed criteria. It's a complete change of pace from the FCC under former Chairman Ajit Pai's leadership, which established the previous 25 / 3Mbps standard.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geek

New portable Sonos Roam speaker leaks, coming in April for $169

9to5Mac - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 12:21

A new portable speaker by Sonos, Sonos Roam, just leaked online. It will measure 6.5 x 2.5 x 2.5 inches, which is smaller than the company’s first portable speaker Sonos Move and similar to other speakers in the market, such as UE Boom and JBL Xtreme.


The post New portable Sonos Roam speaker leaks, coming in April for $169 appeared first on 9to5Mac.

Categories: Geek

T-Mobile aims to lead the enterprise market with new 5G unlimited plans and ‘Home Office Internet’

9to5Mac - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 12:20

During an Uncarrier livestream event today, T-Mobile unveiled its latest 5G offerings, and they’re specifically for businesses and organizations. The carrier is launching new Enterprise Unlimited Plans, the “Collaborate” phone system, Home Office Internet, and aiming to outdo Verizon and AT&T with better performance and coverage as well as more affordable prices.


The post T-Mobile aims to lead the enterprise market with new 5G unlimited plans and ‘Home Office Internet’ appeared first on 9to5Mac.

Categories: Geek

'Neanderthal' GOP Whines Over Mean Names From President

Crooks and Liars - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 12:12

For five years Donald Trump used the most offensive language and nasty attacks on his political rivals or anyone that disagreed with him either during press events, interviews, and on social media.

Republicans stayed silent.

But when Texas Governor Abbott unceremoniously and without consulting his own medical experts rescinded mask requirements, President Biden immediately called him out for "neanderthal thinking."

The GOP snowflakes in government and right-wing media seized up in spasms of whinery.

Greg Abbott said, "It's not the type of word a president should be using."

Yes, Abbott (Not with Costello) actually said that.

Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves claimed he had a PTSD attack from Biden's word, reliving the "trauma" from when Hillary Clinton called some crazy republicans "deplorables."

"Today I feel the same way as I did the day Hillary Clinton called all of us in middle America deplorables."

And to cap it off, on Fox and Friends, Missouri's seditious Senator Josh Hawley was flummoxed and attacked Biden for not being "Mr. Unity," and getting out to middle-America more.

Pres. Biden just came back from Texas offering millions of dollars of federal aid, but whateves.

read more

Categories: Politics

Legislators reintroduce immigration bills previously passed by House but blocked by Senate

Daily Kos - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 12:04

Wednesday was a big day in the U.S. House of Representatives, with legislators reintroducing two major legalization bills that stand to affect millions. The first, the Dream and Promise Act, affects Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), Temporary Protected Status (TPS), and Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) holders. The second, the Farm Workforce Modernization Act, provides a pathway to citizenship for farmworkers and their families.

Both bills were previously introduced by the House, and passed with bipartisan votes. The Dream and Promise Act received seven Republican votes to pass 237 to 187, while the Farm Workforce Modernization Act passed by an even wider margin of 260 to 165. It was the first time the chamber had passed such protections in many years. Yet, like countless other progressive pieces of legislation, the bills were stalled by Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. Following his demotion, advocates say now is the time to act.

Categories: Politics

Resquared (YC W21) Is Hiring Engineers

Hacker News - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 12:00
Categories: Geek

Maddow: Even A Second Grader Knows Elaine Chao Is Corrupt

Crooks and Liars - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 11:56

Rachel Maddow didn't sugarcoat it Wednesday night. Elaine Chao misused her office as Trump's alleged "Transportation Secretary" from the beginning, appearing regularly to promote her father's business while in office. Drain the swamp? Not in the Transportation Department!

read more

Categories: Politics

Tired of waiting for Apple’s AirTags? This open-source project lets you create your own

9to5Mac - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 11:54

The first report about Apple working on an item tracker was back in April 2019, here on 9to5Mac. Since then, we’ve seen the device appear and disappear from iOS builds and even show up in an official Apple video on YouTube. More recently, rumors started picking up again about its imminent release, given the presence of support for third-party item trackers in iOS 14.5, which will also work for Apple’s own item tracking device.

But if you’re tired of waiting for Apple to release their own item tracker, there’s an open-source project that might help you, but only if you’re into hacking. Researchers from German university TU Darmstadt reverse-engineered the protocol used by Apple devices to participate in the Find My network and released free resources for those who would like to create their own item-tracking device at home.


The post Tired of waiting for Apple’s AirTags? This open-source project lets you create your own appeared first on 9to5Mac.

Categories: Geek

The House just gave Senate Democrats every reason to end the filibuster as we know it

Daily Kos - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 11:50

The House stayed in session late Wednesday to wrap up a critical week of work: passing H.R. 1, the sweeping voting and democracy reforms, and an expansive overhaul of American policing, the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act. The House was shuttered Thursday, a result of the threat of violence against the Capitol bubbling up from those forces that, in part, make the legislation necessary: those with fascist and white supremacist instincts to impose their will over the majority, and particularly citizens of color, by keeping them out of the polls and under constant threat from law enforcement.

Each bill would restart the crucial work of racial justice, providing real and transformative changes to federal elections by ensuring equal access to the voting booth and federal representation, and in policing by creating national standards for law enforcement and constraints on the use of force, including the kind of force police used in killing George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. Each bill faces the ridiculous hurdle of a Democratic majority in the Senate that could fail to pass them because of what former President Barack Obama calls a "Jim Crow relic," the filibuster.

Categories: Politics

Deals: Apple Watch and iPhone sale from $120, iPad Air $69 off, more

9to5Mac - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 11:49

All of today’s best deals kick off with a 1-day Apple Watch and iPhone sale from $120. That’s alongside Apple’s latest iPad Air at $69 off and some rare Philips Hue discounts from $42. Hit the jump for all that and more in the latest 9to5Toys Lunch Break.


The post Deals: Apple Watch and iPhone sale from $120, iPad Air $69 off, more appeared first on 9to5Mac.

Categories: Geek

Apple Faces EU Antitrust Charge on Spotify Complaint

Slashdot - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 11:45
Apple could face an EU antitrust charge sheet in the coming weeks following a 2019 complaint by music streaming service Spotify, Reuters reported Thursday, citing people familiar with the matter. From the report: The charge could force changes to Apple's lucrative business model, they said. The European Commission could send the statement of objections setting out suspected violations of the bloc's antitrust rules to Apple before the summer, one of the people said. The case is one of four opened by the EU competition enforcer into Apple in June last year. The EU charge sheet usually indicates whether a fine is merited and what companies have to do to halt anti-competitive practices.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geek

EU antitrust regulators are finalizing charges against Apple after Spotify’s complaint

iDownloadBlog - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 11:40

A new report says that EU antitrust regulators are moving forward with charges against Apple in light of Spotify's complaints, which could be presented to Apple in the coming months.
Categories: Geek

Fox News Is Suddenly Shy About Showing Images On TV

Kevin Drumm - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 11:36

Over at the Washington Post, Philip Bump confirms a suspicion of mine. Fox News has been going absolutely ballistic over the "canceling" of Dr. Seuss books but hasn't shown the actual offensive images themselves:

The Washington Post isn’t showing the images for obvious reasons, but they can be seen elsewhere. But you know who else has avoided showing the images? Fox News.

Instead, the network’s coverage is heavy on B-roll footage in which cameras pan across Seuss titles seen on bookstore shelves....None of the books shown there are among the ones which the Seuss estate has pulled from publication.

The reason for this is obvious. Here, for example, is one of the images:

This is so obviously offensive by today's standards that even the whitest Fox News viewer would cringe at seeing it. And that would ruin their whole schtick. If Fox viewers realized that the images in question actually were offensive, and not just the fever dreams of some lefty social justice warriors, they'd realize that Fox was duping them.

So no pictures for Fox! Much better to simply rail endlessly and let their audience assume that this is just some ridiculous liberal freakout over nothing. That's much better for ratings.

Categories: Politics

Jan. 6 hearings show the process was awful, intelligence sucked, and Christopher Miller must testify

Daily Kos - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 11:35

In days of testimony before Senate and House committees, three names have come up repeatedly. One of those is former acting Secretary of Defense Christopher Miller. It was Miller who issued explicit, and unprecedented instructions to the D.C. National Guard which not only limited their equipment, but made it more difficult for them to be deployed in an emergency.

The second is former Secretary of the Army Ryan McCarthy. Even when the Guard had been supposedly approved for deployment, McCarthy appears to have stepped in to demand details of how they would be used, even as Capitol Police and Metro D.C. Police were waging desperate efforts to protect Congress and push back protestors. Both McCarthy and previous Sec. of Defense Mark Esper appear to have worked closely with the National Guard during earlier protests, but on Jan. 6, McCarthy’s primary role appears to have been delaying the arrival of Guard forces for hours.

Categories: Politics

COVID-19 relief bill includes desperately needed help for child care centers

Daily Kos - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 11:30

The child care industry and the workers in it—overwhelmingly women, many of them women of color—have been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic. Really hard. But now there are two big reasons for hope, thanks to child care funding in the COVID-19 relief bill passed by the House and to a rush of states opening up vaccinations to child care workers.

After losing 400,000 jobs early in the pandemic, the industry hasn’t fully rebounded. In December 2020, there were still nearly 175,000 fewer child care jobs than there were in December 2019. In an industry that operates on extremely tight profit margins, enrollments remain down due to both reduced class sizes for social distancing purposes and parents keeping their kids home rather than risking group settings, while expenses for personal protective equipment and cleaning are up.

Categories: Politics

WhatsApp brings VoIP and video calls to desktop

iDownloadBlog - Thu, 03/04/2021 - 11:16

A promotional image demonstrating voice and video calls on WhatsApp Desktop

You can now call WhatsApp contacts via mobile or desktop. One-to-one calls are supported at launch, with a group-calling feature coming to WhatsApp Desktop in the future.
Categories: Geek