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Starting in January, your ability to access personal Social Security earnings and benefits via online access has been handed over to Experian - the same company that keeps your credit information completely screwed up accurate.

Experian's huge store of frequently inacurate records now includes personal and confidential Social Security Administration information they didn't have on file already, but only so they can verify your identity. What could possibly go wrong ...?

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Wed Jan 16, 2013 at 05:11 PM PST

O/T: advice on TECH upgrades

by TechBob

I’m my family & friend’s (retired) geek and a recent rec’d diary started me thinking about how often I hear these complaints:

  • “I HATE the new (Windows, OSX, iTunes, iPhone, Windows Phone, Blackberry, etc.)!”
  • “I just learned how to do what I want in the old software and now they changed EVERYTHING!”
  • “(Microsoft/Apple/HP/Dell et al) must hate their customers; I can’t use any of their new stuff!”
  • “I just got my new computer and now I can’t find my (mail/ contacts/ documents/ pictures…)!”
Well, I hate to break it to you – but, it’s not their fault – it’s your fault. (Well, maybe a little their fault – but you can protect yourself from evil Corporate Marketing forces).  Allow me to elaborate and ramble a bit lot with my old “Analyst” hat on …
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Wonder what we're in for when there are only a few Cell & ISP providers and no "Net Neutrality" in our near future?  I just came across this sad story that could give us a clue; (no independent verifications, as of yet) the tale of a small Canadian businesswoman, Cindy Quigley, who had her life and business take from her by deceptive practices of Telus - one of a handful of telecom monopolies allowed in the "great white north".

Sad video of her plight below the fold:

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In a deliciously ironic twist, it turns out the Obama detractors promoting the hateful "Pray for Obama, Psalm 109:8" merchandise have seriously misinterpreted the scripture and are actually calling down the wrath of God on their own heads.  A friend who is a Biblical Scholar realized this and said the Psalm is King David's plea to bring down God's Judgment on his false accusers.

This friend is a KOS lurker and Rachel Maddow fan (where he first saw this discussed) and  wrote the following letter to Rachel that I wanted to share with the DailyKOS family (he's too shy to post directly) - It's a good one, you want to read this...

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Everybody's Financial's suck this quarter, but HP announced that they will try to avoid 20,000 layoffs by reducing employee salaries across the board.  The shocker is the progressive nature of the cuts: Top execs lose 20% down to only 2.5% for lowest tier employees.  ZDnet has posted the full text of the internal memo on it's site.

Maybe I'm naive, but could this be a model for how large corporations should act to protect their employees?  The Republican business model has always seemed to be "I've got mine, screw you" - this seems to be "I've got mine - but I can share..." by asking more from those who can afford it.  Is this going to piss off Wall Street or am I wrong...?

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I recently had an email exchange with a fellow liberal who is in the process of vetting the Democratic candidates for disqualifiers w.r.t. her personal list of priorities.  I am tired of listening to people seek for reasons NOT to vote for a particular Democrat and told her to "hold her nose and just vote"!

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Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 11:34 AM PST

US Marines mum on brutal new weapon

by TechBob

When some professionals in the Defense Technology Industry call a weapon "massively brutal" and call the quiet roll-out of this anti-precision bomb a "lousy strategy" - you know it must be bad.
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Thu Oct 28, 2004 at 10:21 PM PDT

$450+ Billion Tax Giveaway? "Ka-Ching!"

by TechBob

Lost in the current noise level is a huge payoff to Bush's corporate base - a temporary lowering of the corporate tax rate to 5.25% (from 35%) for one year only.  Earlier, I spotted a comment from one financial analyst that hinted this bill might be more costly than initially thought.  It looks like my estimates of the true impact were off by a couple of hundred billion!
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Tue Oct 12, 2004 at 09:22 PM PDT

Bush's wireless prompting Solution!

by TechBob

Could this be it? the Comtek Wireless Cueing System:
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I was browsing one of my favorite gadget sites GIZMODO and found this ...
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"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing"
- Edmund Burke

(This is a little off topic in a political BLOG, but I think it addresses a source of some of the faults of the current administration.  I also cite the "cure" BLOGs provide and the problem of not addressing the root cause of the disease.)

My Thesis:

Corruption is an inherent part of corporate and public systems because it is designed in by a current emphasis on narrowly defined metrics.  Mediocre products, deception, and increasing polarization are the result of the success of an entire system rather than the failure of specific individuals.

At first glance this does not make sense.  How could something be geared to producing negative and ultimately destructive results as an ultimate goal?  What sane person would create processes that deliberately result in bad ... "products" ... "service" ... "policy" ... "government" ... "laws"  ... (insert your favorite here).

The answer to this conundrum lies in the clever use of bureaucratic insulation. If no one has to take responsibility for project results, then no one has to make personal judgments or be held directly accountable.

A key term that must be defined is the corporate favorite; "metrics".  By metrics, I mean a definable measurement used to gauge whether a process or product is better/worse over a period of time.  This is attractive to those who must decide if what they evaluate is a success or failure because it offers the prospect of avoiding ... um ... "hard" decisions.  (Bush reference intended)

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