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The Mallard Of Diversity

GBIF looks like an acronym that could be scribbled on the inside cover of a schoolgirl’s notebook, representing an expression of earnest affection – some variant of BFF. In fact, it represents a more serious idea: A place to collect data from observations of living organisms – the Global Biodiversity Information Facility.

The Global Biodiversity [...]

9 House Conservatives roll out National Homeland Security ID Card

They say it’s about “aliens.” That’s the sort of thing they always say. Dig deeper and you’ll find it’s about all of us.

On the first day of the 112th Congress, Republican congressman David Dreier introduced H.R. 98, a bill he calls the “Illegal Immigration Enforcement and Social Security Protection Act of 2011.” But the [...]

Useful New Resource on Surveillance Society: Top Secret America

Yesterday morning, a team of Washington Post journalists unveiled a major new resource called Top Secret America: A Hidden World, Growing Beyond Control. A series of connected web pages identify and connected various government agencies and private companies that are engaged in erecting a new classified surveillance structure in the United States.

The amount of [...]

Police Make Arrests in Britain to Shovel DNA into Database. See also “USA.”

The UK Human Genetics Commission reports on DNA database sweeps by the British police:

It is now the norm to arrest offenders for everything if there is a power to do so … It is apparently understood by serving police officers that one of the reasons, if not the reason, for the change in practice [...]

The Piece of Activism I Choked On

Last night, I was scheduled to make calls between 6 and 8 pm to homes regarding an issue about which I have strong beliefs. I only made it 40 minutes into those two hours before I called it quits.

I’d volunteered to be part of this “phone bank,” but the more I learned about it [...]

Hey, Mom and Dad! Has School Told You About Recruiter Opt Out?

Since the No Child Left Behind Act was passed, schools in America have been required to give students’ personal information to military recruiters unless a student’s parents specifically state otherwise. In matters of consumer information congressional majorities have declared that adults must have privacy by default, opting in to any credit or information-sharing program. When [...]

Total Information Awareness Earmark?

Given its history of spying on the American people, I don’t think that the military deserves the benefit of the doubt on this project. Nor does it deserve funding for the OSINT project. [...]

Maine DOE: We Must Violate Your Child's Privacy. Computer Said So. Moo.

This year, the Maine Department of Education has instituted a new policy, requiring every public school principal to send on the name and infraction details of any child suspended from school to the state government for inclusion in a massive database recording the behaviors of youth. We’re not talking about criminals here — we’re talking [...]

Maine DOE: We Must Violate Your Child’s Privacy. Computer Said So. Moo.

This year, the Maine Department of Education has instituted a new policy, requiring every public school principal to send on the name and infraction details of any child suspended from school to the state government for inclusion in a massive database recording the behaviors of youth. We’re not talking about criminals here — we’re talking [...]

New RSS Feed of Progressive Activist Events

As we continue to ramp up our I Voted For You, But… project to collect Obama voters’ expressions of personal dissent and progressive activists’ plans for collective protest, we’ve taught ourselves how to write RSS feeds. As a result, we’re able to share with you a new RSS feed of progressive activist events. If you [...]

I Voted For You, But… A New Website to Share Your Obama Voter Caveat

“Dissent is the Highest Form of Patriotism.”

That’s what we told conservatives when they tried to shut us up during the long 8 years of the Bush presidency. The phrase will still apply after we congratulate Barack Obama on his election victory and look forward to the dawning of the Obama Era.

I almost voted [...]