By MassPrivateI Home improvement stores like Home Depot and Lowe’s have become partners in Big Brother’s ever expanding public surveillance program. Home Depot’s “You Can Do...
In the latest trading session, Home Depot (HD) closed at $175.66, marking a -1% move from the previous day.
Jamie Reagan and Eddie Janko start wedding planning with the rest of the Reagan family's help on 'Blue Bloods.' Where will they have their wedding?
Coming up in a little bit, Speaker Ryan will be talking about tax reform with employees at Southwest Airlines's headquarters in Dallas, TX. The carrier is one of hundreds of companies that have announced employee bonuses since teTax Cuts and Jobs Act became law. Ryan will be joined today by House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX), one of the law’s chief architects. You’ll be able to watch the employee forum at 4:30 p.m. ET/3:30 p.m. CT live on Speaker.gov. While you wait for the event to start, here are a few things to check out: This video or these clips from Speaker Ryan’s recent visit to Home Depot, where he talked about the benefits tax reform is delivering directly to American workers, from bigger paychecks and bonuses to an expanded child tax credit. This story of how a Maryland manufacturer that Speaker Ryan visited in the run-up to tax reform recently announced bonuses for its employees. Based in Kent County, this is a company with a 102-year history and more than 1,000 employees across 14 states. This map showing that tax reform has helped lower utility prices for customers in 41 states (and counting.) OK, that was technically four things, but tax reform has brought a lot of good news for America’s workers, and optimism abounds. Just a couple of items from last week: “Consumer sentiment in March reached the highest level since 2004. . . The advance in confidence underscores buoyant consumer sentiment following tax cuts and one-time bonuses that boosted many Americans’ take-home pay.” (Bloomberg) “The rate of layoffs in the U.S. fell again in late March and dropped to the lowest level since 1973. . . . The labor market is so strong that it’s even drawing back in people who’ve been out of the workforce for years. And it doesn’t show any sign of letting up.” (MarketWatch) So be sure to tune in to speaker.gov/live at 4:30 p.m. ET/3:30 p.m. CT as Speaker Ryan keeps this conversation going and fields questions from Southwest employees.
(компания / тикер / цена / изменение ($/%) / проторгованый объем) ALCOA INC. AA 44.55 -0.41(-0.91%) 745 Amazon.com Inc., NASDAQ AMZN 1,424.50 -22.84(-1.58%) 54338 Apple Inc. AAPL 167.57 -0.21(-0.13%) 135173 Barrick Gold Corporation, NYSE ABX 12.6 0.15(1.20%) 3500 Boeing Co BA 324 -3.88(-1.18%) 12073 Caterpillar Inc CAT 145.4 -1.98(-1.34%) 1218 Chevron Corp CVX 114.45 0.41(0.36%) 777 Cisco Systems Inc CSCO 42.55 -0.34(-0.79%) 12302 Citigroup Inc., NYSE C 68.1 0.60(0.89%) 138659 Deere & Company, NYSE DE 155 -0.32(-0.21%) 674 Exxon Mobil Corp XOM 74.4 -0.21(-0.28%) 2628 Facebook, Inc. FB 158.62 -1.17(-0.73%) 160454 FedEx Corporation, NYSE FDX 240 -0.11(-0.05%) 346 Ford Motor Co. F 11.06 -0.02(-0.18%) 9998 Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc., NYSE FCX 17.72 0.15(0.85%) 23101 General Electric Co GE 13.41 -0.07(-0.51%) 42047 General Motors Company, NYSE GM 36 -0.34(-0.94%) 1117 Goldman Sachs GS 249.97 -1.89(-0.75%) 2265 Google Inc. GOOG 1,028.00 -3.79(-0.37%) 6316 Hewlett-Packard Co. HPQ 22 0.08(0.37%) 201 Home Depot Inc HD 177.7 -0.54(-0.30%) 624 Intel Corp INTC 51.64 -0.44(-0.84%) 57971 International Business Machines Co... IBM 151.74 -1.69(-1.10%) 231 Johnson & Johnson JNJ 129.57 1.42(1.11%) 572 JPMorgan Chase and Co JPM 109.7 -0.27(-0.25%) 10059 McDonald's Corp MCD 157.7 1.32(0.84%) 7185 Merck & Co Inc MRK 54.14 -0.33(-0.61%) 996 Microsoft Corp MSFT
Authored by Charles Hugh Smith via OfTwoMinds blog, Nothing stays the same in dynamic systems, and it's inevitable that the current glut of low costs / cheap stuff will give way to scarcities that cannot be filled at current low prices. One of the books I just finished reading is The Fate of Rome: Climate, Disease, and the End of an Empire. The thesis of the book is fascinating to those of us interested in the rise and fall of empires: Rome expanded for many reasons, but one that is overlooked was the good fortune of an era of moderate weather from around 200 BC to 150 AD: rain was relatively plentiful/ regular and temperatures were relatively warm. Then one of Earth's numerous periods of cooling--a mini ice age--replaced the moderate weather, pressuring agricultural production. Roman technology and security greatly expanded trade, opening routes to China, India and Africa that supplied much of Roman Europe with luxury goods. The Mediterranean acted as a cost-effective inland sea for transporting enormous quantities of grain, wine, etc. around the empire. These trade routes acted as vectors for diseases from afar that swept through the Roman world, decimating the empire's hundreds of densely populated cities whose residents had little resistance to the unfamiliar microbes. Rome collapsed not just from civil strife and mismanagement, but from environmental and infectious disease pressures that did not exist in its heyday. Colder, drier weather stresses the populace by reducing their food intake, which leaves them more vulnerable to infectious diseases. This dynamic was also present in the 15th century during another mini ice age, when the bubonic plague (Black Death) killed approximately 40% of Europe's population. Which brings us to the present: global weather has been conducive to record harvests of grains and other foodstuffs, and I wonder what will happen when this run of good fortune ends, something history tells us is inevitable. Despite the slow erosion of inflation, food is remarkably cheap in the developed world. What happens should immoderate weather strike major grain-growing regions of the world? Then there's infectious diseases. Global air travel and trade has expanded the spectrum of disease vectors to levels that give experts pause. The potential for an infectious disease that can't be mitigated to spread globally is another seriously under-appreciated threat to trade, tourism and cheap stuff in general. There are other factors that could spell the end of cheap stuff, not just food but manufactured goods: 1. Fossil fuels could become much more costly. While I consider it highly likely that the price of oil in US dollars will fall to $40/barrel or lower in a global recession due to a sharp drop in demand (what I've long termed the head-fake), longer term, it's inevitable that the cheap-to-access fossil fuels (other than coal) will become depleted and the cost of accessing, processing and transporting what's left will rise. Since fossil fuels remain the backbone of industrial societies everywhere (yes, including Germany), a steady increase in fuel costs will push the cost of everything that uses energy (i.e. everything) higher. 2. Trade restrictions/conflicts. Globalization and populism both target "unfair trade practices" in which "unfair" is in the eye of the beholder: imports hurt the domestic economy everywhere, and exports help the domestic economy everywhere. If trade is restricted for whatever reason, the costs of commoditized goods will likely increase, possibly by a lot. 3. Global wages are rising. You've probably seen signs at Home Depot and fast-food chain outlets announcing "we're hiring": even though 100 million working-age people are "not in the work force" in the U.S., many of these individuals lack the skills and/or willingness to take jobs in the modern economy, which demand a lot of workers even in so-called low-skill fields such as fast food. To work in fast food, individuals must be able to handle high pressure and a fast pace; it's not an easy job by any means. Many employers are reporting that they can't find enough qualified candidates who pass drug tests, yet another fallout of the opioid epidemic. Many people are saddled with felony convictions for nonviolent drug offenses, rendering them ineligible for most corporate or government employment. Immigration restrictions and minimum wage laws will add to the rising cost of labor. Globally, the baby Boom generation is retiring, leaving worker shortages on the horizon even in China. (Note that workers tend to retire much earlier in Asia and Europe than in the U.S.: 60 or 62 is typically the mandatory retirement age in much of the global economy.) As Immanuel Wallerstein has observed (I've written about his work many times), there are systemic, secular pressures to raise wages and benefits everywhere: costs are rising, and people expect more government services such as education and income security, and as taxes increase, wages must rise to maintain the net earnings (purchasing power) of the workers. We in North America have become accustomed to cheap stuff; we consider it our birthright: cheap fuels, cheap manufactured goods, cheap food and cheap labor. Without even being aware of it, we feel entitled to "low prices always." We may feel fuel, food and consumer goods are expensive now, but we are comparing prices to an extended period of extraordinarily low costs. Prices for energy could easily rise 50%, impacting the cost of everything; should harvests be crippled by bad weather, the cost of grains could easily double or triple from their current historic lows. Should trade be restricted and wages rise virtually everywhere, manufactured consumer goods could go up in price even as robots replace human labor: energy and raw materials will still be costly inputs even if all human labor is eliminated. Add in some stiff tariffs for unfair trade practices, and all the robots in the world won't keep prices down. Nothing stays the same in dynamic systems, and it's inevitable that the current glut of low costs / cheap stuff will give way to scarcities that cannot be filled at current low prices. Cheap stuff will go away, and everything will cost more. It seems highly likely that the next decade will not be like the last 10 years of abundance and cheap stuff. Courtesy of Incrementum AG, here is a chart of the commodity/S&P 500 ratio. Commodities are at historic lows in relation to stock market valuations. Stocks can decline, or commodities can rise, or both can occur in tandem. If history is any guide, this ratio will reverse and reach a peak within the next decade. * * * My new book Money and Work Unchained is $9.95 for the Kindle ebook and $20 for the print edition. Read the first section for free in PDF format. If you found value in this content, please join me in seeking solutions by becoming a $1/month patron of my work via patreon.com.
Now we know why they call it March Madness. This month, Speaker Ryan met with more than a dozen foreign dignitaries (including Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu), signed several important pieces of legislation, gave an official address to the Czech Parliament in Prague, and much more. Here are eight photos that show some of our favorite moments from the month of March: 1. The Battle of Ideas – During an interview for Ben Shapiro's podcast, Speaker Ryan and the host engage in a lively discussion about political philosophy, natural rights, and the battle of ideas. 2. The Spring Cohort – Speaker Ryan sits down with his offices’ spring interns, answering their questions and offering advice as they start their careers. 3. The Home Depot Visit – While visiting Home Depot in Atlanta, Georgia, to talk about the benefits of tax reform, Speaker Ryan cracks a joke during a drilling demo. 4. The Friends of Ireland Luncheon – Speaker Ryan and the Taoiseach of Ireland, Leo Varadkar, welcome President Trump and Vice President Pence to the Capitol for the annual Friends of Ireland luncheon. 5. The School Safety Discussion – Speaker Ryan meets with Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL) and Max and Ryan Schachter—who lost their son and brother, Alex, in the tragic shooting in Parkland—to discuss what more could be done to ensure our country’s schools are safe. Much-needed school safety improvements were signed into law by the president this month. 6. The Fight to #EndTrafficking – Alongside Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) and Reps. Ann Wagner (R-MO) and Mimi Walters (R-CA), Speaker Ryan signs critical legislation that cracks down on bad-actor websites that facilitate human trafficking. 7. The Czech Address – During a visit to the Czech Republic to address its parliament, Speaker Ryan had the chance to thank U.S. Embassy Prague staff and their families for the sacrifices they make to represent our country. 8. The Prime Minister Meeting – Speaker Ryan welcomes Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to the Capitol, prior to a meeting with members of House leadership. As for Speaker Ryan’s bracket, there’s always next year.
This, is the Home Depot. They employ hundreds of thousands of Americans. And their hourly associates just got a bonus because of tax reform. It’s the one thing that changes everything. Finally: Less talking. More doing. Now, let’s keep the momentum going. More jobs. Bigger paychecks. That’s the power of tax reform.
(компания / тикер / цена / изменение ($/%) / проторгованый объем) ALCOA INC. AA 44.6 0.18(0.41%) 1000 ALTRIA GROUP INC. MO 62.87 0.42(0.67%) 774 Amazon.com Inc., NASDAQ AMZN 1,429.00 -2.42(-0.17%) 169891 American Express Co AXP 92.88 0.67(0.73%) 225 Apple Inc. AAPL 167.95 1.47(0.88%) 158462 AT&T Inc T 35.71 0.15(0.42%) 2098 Boeing Co BA 322.95 2.93(0.92%) 21591 Caterpillar Inc CAT 146.25 1.09(0.75%) 1697 Chevron Corp CVX 112.37 0.27(0.24%) 323 Cisco Systems Inc CSCO 41.99 0.33(0.79%) 4462 Citigroup Inc., NYSE C 68.5 0.24(0.35%) 1478 Exxon Mobil Corp XOM 73.03 0.22(0.30%) 7948 Facebook, Inc. FB 154.77 1.74(1.14%) 419979 Ford Motor Co. F 10.93 0.07(0.64%) 9200 Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc., NYSE FCX 16.95 0.20(1.19%) 12050 General Electric Co GE 13.74 0.06(0.44%) 170167 General Motors Company, NYSE GM 35.55 0.08(0.23%) 2337 Goldman Sachs GS 250.7 1.33(0.53%) 1539 Google Inc. GOOG 1,010.12 5.56(0.55%) 7084 Hewlett-Packard Co. HPQ 21.82 0.13(0.60%) 201 Home Depot Inc HD 176.1 1.34(0.77%) 661 HONEYWELL INTERNATIONAL INC. HON 143.51 0.25(0.17%) 671 Intel Corp INTC 49.95 0.35(0.71%) 18107 International Business Machines Co... IBM 153 0.48(0.31%) 522 Johnson & Johnson JNJ 128.1 0.65(0.51%) 314 JPMorgan Chase and Co JPM 108.74 0.74(0.69%) 3546 McDonald's Corp MCD 159.5 1.09(0.69%) 459 Merck & Co Inc MRK
First comes the news of yet another improper leak of personal data. Then the outrage and investigations in Washington, the calls for a chastened CEO to testify in front of Congress, the cries for tough news laws and regulations to protect people’s privacy. Then, typically, nothing much happens.The Facebook privacy scandal could turn out differently. But that would make it the exception in a long string of U.S. data-privacy furors, which have come and gone with no serious laws, rules or other major repercussions for companies like Equifax, Yahoo, Uber or Home Depot — even those whose leaks were arguably worse than Facebook’s.Lax security at Equifax, for example, allowed hackers to steal highly personal and financial data on as many as 148 million Americans — exposing them to the risk of identity theft and ruined credit. But nearly seven months after that news broke, Congress has largely dropped the issue, while state and federal regulators are investigating.Much the same is true for Yahoo, which admitted last fall to two mammoth breaches that exposed the data on all 3 billion of its users, feeding the black market for identity thieves and allegedly giving Russian intelligence officers access to high-value email accounts. While Yahoo took a financial hit — Verizon shaved $350 million from its offer to buy the company — lawmakers weren’t able to move any serious responses.“My hope is that [this time] is different, but my fear is that a lot of Americans throw up their hands and say, ‘What can I do?’” said Justin Hendrix, who heads the NYC Media Lab and is helping lead a tech and media initiative called Regulate Social Media. “You’ve got all this momentum, but even if the ball’s really rolling, it’s not clear what direction it’s going to roll,” added Jake Laperruque, a digital privacy specialist with the Project on Government Oversight.Still, advocates retain a degree of optimism that Cambridge Analytica’s repurposing of data on 50 million Facebook users during the 2016 election might eventually lead to regulatory changes — even if it doesn’t occur in the coming months. They say this latest digital misconduct gets to the visceral issue of Americans’ ability to conduct fair elections, making it different than the more common data breaches that have become a regular occurrence. “It seems like more than ever before if we don’t act, [lawmakers] are actually abdicating their responsibility to people across the country,” said Amie Stepanovich, U.S. policy manager for the digital rights group Access Now. Doing nothing, Hendrix added, is “not an option if you prefer democracy.” Still, the track record of other headline-grabbing data scandals offers reason for skepticism that Washington is about to break up Facebook, hit it with multitrillion-dollar fines, regulate it like a utility or impose the other draconian penalties people have floated.Here’s a look at how those other data furors have played out:YAHOOWhen: Occurred in 2013 and 2014, discovered in 2017How many people affected: 3 billionWhy it mattered: The twin breaches set records for the number of people compromised in a single digital intrusion. The first one, which alone hit 3 billion, will probably never be matched unless someone breaches every single user of a company like Google. (The second Yahoo breach exposed 500 million Yahoo users.)Prosecutors, who secured indictments of four men for the smaller hack, said Russian intelligence agents conspired with notorious criminal hackers to steal the data, then used it to build dossiers on journalists, dissidents and U.S. officials. Meanwhile, the criminals leveraged it to steal identities and launch email spam schemes.Consequences: Congress largely let the Yahoo incident slide with little more than a public chastising of former CEO Marissa Mayer, whom the Senate Commerce Committee subpoenaed to testify last November. Committee Chairman John Thune (R-S.D.) said Mayer’s testimony would be “important in shaping our future reactions,” but his committee has yet to move any related legislation. EQUIFAXWhen: Occurred and discovered in 2017How many people affected: 148 million, potentially half the adult U.S. populationWhy it mattered: This may have been the most damaging breach of all time, especially because the information that was compromised — such as Social Security numbers — is considered the crown jewels for identity thieves. (Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts has alleged that it also included passport numbers, which the company denies.)The company compounded matters with a slow, confusing response that included an apparent attempt to limit customers’ rights to sue, as well as suspicious stock sales that led to recent insider-trading charges against a former executive who dumped nearly $1 million in Equifax shares before the breach was announced.Consequences: Congress proposed myriad changes to the legal requirements for companies to respond to data leaks and protect Americans’ sensitive information, and Democratic bills sought to tighten oversight of credit reporting companies more specifically.But momentum stalled within months. A working group featuring senior lawmakers from both parties was effectively put on hold, falling victim to years-old battles between industries such as banking, retailing and telecommunications over whom any legislation would cover and what the specific security and privacy requirements should be.Meanwhile, the Senate passed a sweeping banking bill this month that would reward Equifax and other credit monitoring companies by protecting them from some consumer lawsuits and letting them expand into the mortgage business.However, regulators have descended on Equifax in the wake of the incident. Both the Federal Trade Commission and a number of states are examining whether there was any malfeasance in the way the company handled the breach.UBERWhen: Occurred and discovered in 2016, covered up until 2017How many people affected: 57 millionWhy it mattered: This breach added a new element to the discussion — the cover-up. The ride-hailing giant revealed last November that it had conspired for more than a year to keep the leak secret by paying the hackers $100,000 to destroy the data. That way, the company hoped to keep the data off the black markets, where a researcher might discover it and alert the public.Uber’s actions may have violated state laws requiring companies to alert victims, authorities and regulators about the breach.Consequences: Numerous states are investigating the matter, and the FTC — which had previously penalized Uber over privacy issues — has said it is “closely evaluating the serious issues” raised by the incident.On Capitol Hill, Uber got roped into the Equifax fallout. Lawmakers also pushed proposals to address the specifics of the Uber breach, including a bill co-sponsored by three Democratic senators that would let prosecutors seek jail time for individuals who knowingly cover up a data breach. But that bill has shown no signs of moving.TARGET When: Occurred and discovered in 2013How many people affected: 40 million Why it mattered: This was the breach that started it all. While Target was far from the first company to experience a digital intrusion, the infiltration over the 2013 holiday season infiltration brought the issue into mainstream conversation. The exposure of 40 million customers’ payment card data was a gobsmacking figure at the time and made those victims easy targets for fraud.Consequences: A Target executive appeared on Capitol Hill within weeks, and lawmakers re-upped dormant proposals to require timely breach notification for victims. Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle expressed an interest in such an idea. “This might provide the chance to take action quickly,” said Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley, then the top Republican on the Judiciary Committee.Some Democrats also pushed for a law that would instruct the FTC to write nationwide digital security standards for companies handling sensitive data.Nothing ultimately happened in Congress. However, CEO Gregg Steinhafel resigned several months later, in part due to the breach. Target agreed in 2015 to pay affected banks $39.4 million to cover their expenses and struck a deal with Visa to give $67 million to credit card companies’ victimized customers. A class action settlement is still pending.In total, Target has said it spent over $200 million recovering from the breach.HOME DEPOTWhen: Occurred and discovered in 2014How many people affected: 56 millionWhy it mattered: This theft of credit card data showed the public that Target was far from unique, and set the record at the time for the largest retail card breach ever. Ensuing news reports revealed that the home improvement giant had ignored years of warnings from its own computer experts that its systems were vulnerable.Consequences: Capitol Hill went through the same motions: outrage, a demand for testimony and a vow to change things.“I do sincerely believe that is an achievable goal,” said Rep. Michael Burgess (R-Texas), then the chairman of the House Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade, at a January 2015 hearing. The hearing followed both the Home Depot breach and a leak at banking giant JPMorgan Chase that compromised 83 million accounts. But nothing much happened.The company’s business didn’t even suffer significantly, with sales remaining in line with expectations the month the breach was announced. Home Depot also didn’t change its expectations for sales growth for fiscal 2014. And despite a brief dip in stock price after the breach was revealed, Home Depot’s stock price is nearly double today what it was in late 2014.Like Target, the company has had to settle a variety of lawsuits, agreeing in 2016 to pay at least $19.5 million to victims and doling out $25 million to banks last year. In total, the company says the breach has cost it at least $179 million. U.S. OFFICE OF PERSONNEL MANAGEMENTWhen: Occurred in 2014, discovered in 2015How many people affected: 22 millionWhy it mattered: This breach, blamed on Chinese hackers, exposed some of the government’s most sensitive documents — the detailed questionnaires used to process security clearances for more than 20 million current and former federal employees and applicants. It also included personnel files on every federal worker and was a huge espionage victory for Beijing.Security clearance applications are exhaustive, including 127 pages of details on people’s most closely held secrets, such as affairs, drug and alcohol abuse or bankruptcies. Intelligence professionals say they are a treasure trove for blackmail and can be used to identify undercover American agents, especially when cross-referenced with data like airline travel logs, which Chinese hackers are also suspected of stealing.Consequences: The OPM breach could be considered the one digital privacy scare that led to serious ramifications and concrete action. Within weeks, then-OPM Director Katherine Archuleta stepped down after running a gantlet of Capitol Hill hearings where lawmakers admonished her handling of the agency’s digital security practices. Months later, the agency’s chief information officer resigned under pressure from Congress. And the incident led to a broad overhaul of the government's security clearance process, which put the Defense Department in charge of protecting the background check forms.Meanwhile, lawmakers revived a long-stalled proposal to offer incentives for companies to share more data on hacking threats with the government. By December 2015, just six months after OPM revealed the breach, the legislation became law. It was the first major cybersecurity bill Congress had approved in years — and, so far, it’s the last one.
(компания / тикер / цена / изменение ($/%) / проторгованый объем) ALCOA INC. AA 44.93 0.03(0.07%) 3475 ALTRIA GROUP INC. MO 61.25 0.53(0.87%) 2290 Amazon.com Inc., NASDAQ AMZN 1,463.00 -34.05(-2.27%) 207417 American Express Co AXP 91.21 -0.21(-0.23%) 616 Apple Inc. AAPL 167.14 -1.20(-0.71%) 503121 AT&T Inc T 35.08 0.18(0.52%) 24516 Barrick Gold Corporation, NYSE ABX 12.43 -0.13(-1.04%) 2284 Boeing Co BA 321.7 0.58(0.18%) 15747 Caterpillar Inc CAT 147 0.01(0.01%) 2023 Chevron Corp CVX 114.8 0.14(0.12%) 900 Cisco Systems Inc CSCO 42.52 -0.16(-0.37%) 70972 Citigroup Inc., NYSE C 68.14 -0.14(-0.21%) 22881 Deere & Company, NYSE DE 152 0.44(0.29%) 400 Exxon Mobil Corp XOM 73.61 -0.09(-0.12%) 4632 Facebook, Inc. FB 152.21 -0.01(-0.01%) 1051973 FedEx Corporation, NYSE FDX 233.75 -0.89(-0.38%) 1450 Ford Motor Co. F 10.82 -0.01(-0.09%) 18571 Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc., NYSE FCX 17.15 -0.09(-0.52%) 14134 General Electric Co GE 13.54 0.10(0.74%) 483777 General Motors Company, NYSE GM 34.83 -0.04(-0.11%) 17306 Goldman Sachs GS 248 0.74(0.30%) 8548 Google Inc. GOOG 1,000.00 -5.10(-0.51%) 18452 Home Depot Inc HD 175.9 1.22(0.70%) 3362 HONEYWELL INTERNATIONAL INC. HON 146.4 2.06(1.43%) 555 Intel Corp INTC 50.65 -0.54(-1.05%) 106926 International Business Machines Co... IBM 151.85 -0.06(-0.04%) 3863 JPMorgan Chase and Co JPM 108.35 0.18(0.17%) 13915 McDonald's Corp MCD
Authored by Jeremiah Johnson via SHTFplan.com, Many have argued that there is neither a surveillance state, nor a concerted effort to disarm the public door-to-door, house by house, etc. Some of these are far-leftists, masquerading as conservatives..... trying to appear “skeptically cynical.” We’ll “game” the thought, to bring everyone back from opacity to transparency. The Communists, Marxists, Leftists, Progressives, Liberals, Democrats, and their ilk deliberately try to disguise the true objectives as outlined in the Planks of the Communist Party…passing themselves off as “middle-ground” in their stances. By denigrating the concept of an imminent surveillance state and ridiculing it, they draw conservatives who are still undecided (“fringe elements”) out of being proponents of the idea…further weakening and obfuscating people’s awareness. The movement of the groups mentioned never ceases: It hasn’t ceased with the fall of the Berlin Wall and subsequent reunification of Germany in 1990, nor the fall of the Soviet Union…more a “restructuring” than a fall…in 1992. The Communists are alive and well, operating within the United States at the lowest levels of society, and at the highest levels of government. We’ll stay with “Communists” as the label, as they are the end-state and will purge all the others who aren’t in complete lock step with them. They are Communists. That being mentioned, as they craft their narratives and lie openly upon the television, radio, and within the newspapers, there is a subtle, devious operation going on right before your eyes: The emplacement of a complete surveillance state of cameras and listening devices, all a part of the “wondrous internet of things.” For that last paraphrase, thank David Petraeus... former head of the CIA (in name only) yet without the technical alacrity to avoid the very thing he lauded... and hence, his downfall via Paula Bridewell. Thanks, Dave, for your erstwhile contribution to crafting the surveillance state. Dave serves as the prime example: no matter how much of a “big hitter” toward the NWO (New World Order) a globalist or establishmentarian one is, they are always expendable. The surveillance state has just been proven with the recent string of bombings in Austin, Texas where the protagonist blew himself up when he was tailed and cornered. This article was released by AP, written by Paul J. Weber on 3/22/18, and it seems to have escaped much notice. I am providing an excerpt that is almost the full article. When you read it, you will see why it is so important. Here it is: How Police Finally Found the Austin Bomber AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The suspected Austin bomber is dead after terrorizing Texas’ capital city for three weeks. And in the end the manhunt wasn’t cracked by hundreds of phoned-in tips, the big pot of reward money or police pleading to the bomber through TV. One of the largest bombing investigations in the U.S. since the Boston Marathon attacks in 2013 came to an intense close early Wednesday when authorities say they moved in on Mark Anthony Conditt at an interstate hotel. Austin Police Chief Brian Manley said Conditt blew himself up after running his sport utility vehicle into a ditch. Here is what’s known about how authorities finally zeroed in on the suspected bomber after 19 days, two dead victims and more than 1,000 calls of suspicious packages around the city: ___ GETTING THE BOMBER ON CAMERA Conditt had been careful to avoid cameras before entering a FedEx store in southwest Austin this week disguised in a blond wig and gloves, said U.S. House Homeland Security chairman Michael McCaul. The Austin congressman had been briefed by police, the FBI and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. McCaul said going into the store was Conditt’s “fatal mistake.” He said authorities previously had leads on a red truck and that the surveillance video from the FedEx store — where Conditt is believed to have dropped off an explosive package destined for an Austin address — allowed investigators to identify him and the truck. Said Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, “I’m not sure how much they narrowed him down to an exact person of who he was before he went into that FedEx store.” ___ TRACKING THE CELLPHONE At the FedEx store, McCaul said investigators got from surveillance the truck license plate that linked the vehicle to Conditt, which in turn gave authorities a cellphone number they could track. McCaul said Conditt had powered down his phone for “quite some time” but that police closed in when he switched it back on. “He turned it on, it pinged, and then the chased ensued,” McCaul said. Abbott said police were able to closely monitor Conditt and his movements for about 24 hours before his death. The governor said the phone number was used to tie Conditt to bombing sites around Austin. “The suspect’s cellphone number showed up at each of the bombing sites as well as some key locations that helped them connect him to the crime,” Abbott said. ___ BUYING BOMB-MAKING MATERIALS Authorities say they also tracked down Conditt, a 23-year-old unemployed college dropout, through witness accounts and other purchases, including at a Home Depot where McCaul said the suspect bought nails and other bomb-making materials. Abbott said Conditt’s purchases at the Home Depot also included five “CHILDREN AT PLAY” signs, one of which was used to rig a tripwire that was set off by two men Sunday in a southwest Austin neighborhood. One of them was walking and the other was riding a bike. William Grote told The Associated Press that his grandson was one of the victims and had nails embedded in his legs from Sunday’s explosion. The batteries to power the bomb were purchased through the internet, McCaul said. ___ STILL PUTTING TOGETHER A PROFILE The initial bomber profile sketched out by FBI behavioral scientists was that he was most likely a white male, McCaul said. And while that part was right, the congressman said, a full psychological profile won’t come together until investigators have time to comb through Conditt’s writings and social media posts. Conditt’s motive is not clear. But on Wednesday, police discovered a 25-minute video recording on a cellphone found with Conditt, which Manley said he considers a “confession” to the bombings. Manley said it described the differences among the bombs in great detail.” Obviously, someone made a big mistake in revealing this information to the stultified, oblivious public... that self-same public of “We the People” that has the right to know, and yet doesn’t understand what is happening. Worse: The public doesn’t care what’s happening. Let’s summarize what these main points mean, for those of you who docare: The cellular telephone is nothing more than a tracking device…as mentioned, it “pings” its position and gives away the location of the owner…along with all of his vital information in the file… every four seconds. The cell phone’s location is tied into the location of every camera, public and private that has a tie-in to the CCTV system monitored by law enforcement in the fusion centers…from the Happy Burger parking lot cameras to the cameras mounted at the intersections in cities, towns, and suburbs. As the happy cell phone passes these locations, the movement is tracked in real time, and recorded. Granted, they had a suspect, but they can review all of the cameras at any business at any given time…to show what Joe the Plumber-turned-bomber may be purchasing at the friendly store…and they can tie that film in with real-time with the cell phone. The vehicle is also the “buddy” of the police and the surveillance establishment. They take pictures and film of the license plate, the car, and glimpses of Joe the Plumber driving it…corroborated by the happy, ever-pinging cellular telephone (the tracking device). All this data for everyone’s movements is recorded, catalogued, and stored…stored away for an indefinite period of time (forever) until the information is needed as evidence or in an investigation. Investigation! Doesn’t that sound exciting? Guess what? Everyone is being investigated, and all of the data on everyone is kept. Purchases! Everybody has to buy things, stuff, etc. Every time you pull up to the gas pump, the car is photographed. The POS (point of sale) at the register tabulates and inventories everything, tying it in to the gas pump, with a picture of Joe and whatever form of fiat he used to pay for the gas and bag of chips. Purchases track in real time, access whatever form of payment you use, tying you in with others…if you use your spouse’s credit card, for example. Cops have license plate/tag readers that can read hundreds of different plates, categorizing all of them in accordance with sensitive data that may have nothing to do with driving upon the roads or their record with the vehicle. Every Internet search, every purchase, every query, every e-mail is saved and read/tabulated into the overall matrix that assesses the potential for an individual to be “harmful” and stored…to be matched against the subject’s behavior and movements at a later date. Systems are already in place that analyze keystrokes for the comparison and narrowing down of who the typist is. Every library sign-out…film, music, or book…is saved and kept for future reference. Biometrics are making the “fingerprint” even more specific…with eye to eye distances, ear shapes, and gaits measured. Any exposed portion of the skin, and the movement and function of the limbs is analyzed and recorded. Every piece of mail is scanned to save sender and recipient’s addresses and (of course) purchases are recorded within the company and matched against what is sent out and to whom. Satellites can target and surveil in real time and tie in to all of the little devices just mentioned. Laptop computers can be traced in accordance with the purchaser’s information from the POS and onward…and the laptops record, photograph, and film as well as putting forth a “ping” of their own…especially when connected to the Internet. All laptop use is matched and corresponded to other places of business (their cameras, etc.) Association: when you’re on your laptop, and here come Smiling Sam and Brother Bob, each with pinging cell phones…letting the authorities know that in that moment of time (Whitney Houston’s “One Moment in Time”) Sam and Bob were right in front of you. Later they can haul both of them in to corroborate that you were on your laptop in front of HappyBurger at whatever date or time they have on record. This excerpt shows that all of these items are in place. Yes, they are surveilling you…are watching all of us. The surveillance is not ubiquitous yet. Not yet. It will be, and soon. They utilized every feature mentioned above to find the bomber. Great. Society has triumphed, and the mad bomber has met his end. But has society really triumphed? That article gives you insight into how the cage is almost completed…the construction is just about finished. What requires further thought is what they will do with this surveillance once it is in place and ubiquitous. Just a few further thoughts for your consideration. You may want to watch what you place into your e-mails and comments. There are techies in the Puzzle Palace and at Ft. Meade whose function is identifying the commenters. Don’t place anything on the Internet that can come back and bite you later. The most effective means of exchange are not on the Internet when it comes to information. Blogs, writers, and commenters have already been “marginalized” and their effectiveness diminished because it is an open source. Your true effectiveness in getting things done is at the “grass roots” level…locally, in small groups for discussion. Your “tool of transmission” is a manual typewriter. Need copies? Get back to Carbon paper. There won’t be a recording of what you copied at your FriendlyCopy center…the one with your information in real-time, right under the eye of the happy surveillance camera in the corner. The one that superficially is to make sure you don’t take more than 1 or 2 paper clips…but manages to send the fusion centers every bit of data they need to match up their culprit (the copier) to the scene of the crime. They’ll also match up his credit card at the register, tally up his total purchases and copies over a period of time, and get plenty of information as it films him walking through the store and out the door. Bottom line: we’re all “guilty” according to laws they haven’t even written yet. It is all about building a case against the average citizen. If you’re not the wolves, then you’re one of the cattle, in their eyes. It will become worse. Much, much worse. If you doubt it and do not take necessary precautions, you may find out it exists when they come knocking on the door. It may already be too late, and their song is “We’ve Only Just Begun,” by Karen Carpenter…. but not to smile. They’ve been doing that for years, as they have taken our taxes to craft the very cages that are almost completed. The next step? Not hard to figure out, and it has happened before…as history repeats itself. Think “Solzhenitsyn,” and think of tomorrow.
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