Omidyar’s “Stolen” Documents (and Mesmer, GNUradio/#badBIOS, Uruguay, metadata, Google, Snowden docs)

Greenwald-skeptic commentator OhTarzie uncovered a Tweet from Pierre Omidyar that’s been making the rounds… from back in 2009:

So @techcrunch says they’re publishing stolen docs. Wonder if they’ll also help catch the thief?

I said ystrdy: @techcrunch and anybody else who pubs stolen info should help catch the thief. Shldnt pub in the 1st place.

To this Omidyar more recently said:

Remember the original example was an outsider break-in, not a corporate leaker from inside. Don’t misinterpret.

My analysis is indeed, Omidyar’s main issue with the publication was that the documents were stolen instead of leaked. Commentators are making this out to be a big thing of “Omidyar is for government leaks, against corporate leaks,” but I’m not so sure… I think it’s more a question of property-theft-burglary to someone who rather likes what he owns.

(Government and corporate power, particularly in the US, are too closely connected for him to be really for Snowden if he was concerned about corporate stuff, unless he’s involved in some subterfuge.

As JYA would put it, the “outrage” over NSA spying from the office suites is solely about lost profits; everyone otherwise loves the preservation-of-the-status-quo effect that mass surveillance has. You can’t really vote against the NSA but for the corporations.)

I would also point out that the zeitgeist has changed significantly over the last four years… certainly had you told me back then that the news was going to be dominated by massive leaks from world+dog, it would have taken me a good few minutes to decide whether I was for or against.

In any case, maybe Wikileaks will end up handling the corporate-and-stolen-documents side of the business, who knows…

(Speaking of this drama, apparently PayPal is not blocking Wikileaks anymore, WL has never actually tried to test the blockade since it originally occurred. )

Mesmer: Yesterday I mentioned Mesmer had contributed a lot to our understanding of psychology. But apart from inventing what would later be modified and altered and tweaked (some would say neutered) into what we now know as hypnotism, it isn’t really clear what the guy did for our knowledge of the human mind when you say, look at his Wikipedia page.

So let me give you an example of just how good Mesmer was. When his patients — both male or female, usually members of the French aristocracy, dukes, barons, the like — entered his treatment room, they would take hold of a bent iron rod. This supposedly conducted the “all-encompassing fluid” into their bodies, which later commentators would argue was one of the most effective examples of suggestion in history.

How effective?

So effective the women almost universally left with smiles, and the men left looking to change their pants — the procedure frequently triggered a spontaneous orgasm!

Mesmer would later “magnetize” trees in the center of villages, so villagers would only have to take hold of the branches to experience the treatment.

GNUradio does #badBIOS.

NSA uses Google and ad-targeting efforts to aid its surveillance.

Uruguay legalized marijuana.

What you can do with metadata analysis. Scary stuff.

Google is evil and their employees are clinically insane:

More Snowden docs:
The “Ghost Machine.”

NSA-CSEC partnership. Yep, 5-eyes agencies cooperate, and SIGINT agencies for some reason waste lots of time and money on cryptanalysis despite the existence of “strong” encryption, apparently all the terrorists and furriners use DES and ROT-13.

(quotes inline)

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