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Category: Trump Dump

USAgile Testing Days – canceled

USAgile Testing Days canceled

USAgile Testing days in Boston are canceled:

Sadly, we have to inform you that we decided to cancel the conference due to the current political situation in the USA. Our hearts are bleeding, but we believe it is the right thing to do. The Agile Testing Days (ATDs) stand for diversity, openness, respect and support the observance of human rights. We despise any sort of hostility or harassment.

The behavior of the current US Government Authority is unacceptable for us and against our values and views. As international organizers we also aim at a diverse and international conference crowd – audience and speakers alike. Many people of the community are expressing their concerns, and even speakers are withdrawing from their attendance now.

All of them feel unconfident about the next months and are unsure of potential problems when entering the country, including us as organizers.

I am waiting for their announcement of an alternate Venue in Cancun.

Seizure of Cellphone content during US immigration checks

US Customs and Border Patrol have forced a NASA engineer to give up the passcode to his cellphone, and presumably copied and inspected the device, The Atlantic reports.

If you are traveling into the US, you are well advised to take blank dummy devices with you, which do not contain any work or personal data on them. Resetting a personal device prior to travel may not be enough in all cases, residual data may exist in the flash (Chromebook and Nexus “Powerwash” reset might be).

Not traveling into the US might be even smarter.

FBI Rap Back

Wikipedia knows:

The [Chinese] Social Credit System is a proposed Chinese government initiative for developing a national reputation system. It has been reported to be intended to assign a “social credit” rating to every citizen based on government data regarding their economic and social status.

Xinhuanet has reported that the plan for the system “focuses on credit in four areas, including administrative affairs, commercial activities, social behavior, and the judicial system.”

The system has been an inspiration for the Black Mirror episode Nosedive, and US newspapers such as The Economost have been condemning it as Digital Totalitarian State.

Meanwhile The Intercepts reports on the FBI Rap Back program (““Rap” is an acronym for Record of Arrest and Prosecution; “Back” is short for background.”), which will implement exactly this:

What the program counts as “triggering events” differs depending on how subscribers configure their systems. In Missouri, where public school teachers are entered into the program, a police captain told a local paper that scanning fingerprints triggers the release of closed records, including charges that are not prosecuted and judicial decisions that result in dismissals or not guilty findings. […]

Lynch said it’s possible that employees could be fired for an arrest where they were exercising their First Amendment rights: filming public officials, attending protests, blocking streets. “It’s unclear if an employer that takes action based on the arrest would know the arrest is tied to First Amendment protected activity.”

The Best Democracy Money Can Buy (4)

Jean-Baptiste Quéru looks at US Manufacturing vs Trade in this Google plus article:

Here’s what I read in it, at a high level:

  • The US didn’t lose manufacturing to trade, since manufacturing went up after trade agreements were signed in 1994 and 2001.
  • US workers didn’t lose jobs to immigrants, since that would typically result in an increase in the workforce (more workers, paid less, individually less productive). Instead, the jobs truly disappeared.

He concludes that trade agreements increase trade, increase revenue, which is then invested into manufacturing automation, which leads to a drop in employment.

His analysis is based on data shown in this report from the American Enterprise Institute, a Washington based neoconservative think tank.

NYT Podcast: The Daily

The Daily, a podcast by the NYT
Tumblr of the day is a pretty good podcast: The Daily by the NYT is commute length and gives a good and unexcited overview about what happened in the US while you slept.

The Podcast is available from the NYT website, or via the usual subscription mechanism provided by your podcast app (I am using Pocket Casts)

There will be war: Understanding Bannonism

Quartz dissects Bannon, and what that means for the future. It does not look good.

It is, in his view, one of a repeated cycle of crises that occurs periodically, each of which inevitably culminates in war and conflict on a grand scale.

“This is the fourth great crisis in American history,” he says in the speech to the LRF. “We had the revolution, we had the Civil War, we had the Great Depression and World War II. This is the great Fourth Turning in American history.”

and

“This may be a little more militant than others…I believe you should take a very, very, very aggressive stance against radical Islam…. See what’s happening, and you will see we’re in a war of immense proportions.”