America and Syria – the backstory

President Trump has decided, unilaterally apparently, to pull all America troops out of Syria, both surprising his Chiefs of Staff and allies. The American story with Syria is intertwined with almost everything the west has done in the Middle East since the end of the 2nd World War.  American was the prime enabler of the Assad family rise to to power, and as everything post war seemed to be, all about fighting the rise of Communism and installing “democracy”. Syria gained its independence in 1946 and in 1948 engaged in the Arab-Israeli war. Later in 1949, the Americans were party, … Continue reading America and Syria – the backstory

Look & See – Rural America

I’ve written a number of harsh posts about those living in rural America, mostly based off the perception that is pushed by the Republican party, that is, rural Americans don’t understand, and resent urban Americans. That rural Americans are the god-fearing, backbone of America and urban and city dwellers are welfare dependents, and worse still, socialists. Certainly, the Republican party continue to push this agenda today, dividing sub-urban and rural communities from the cities. As shown here, rural Americans claiming benefits has sky rocketed between ’96 and 2015; increasingly, the programs getting cut, adversely hit rural America harder, as rural … Continue reading Look & See – Rural America

Legislating hacking/data exposure responses

I don’t know enough about the European Union General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) but at least on basic reading it seems inadequate in meaningful individual action requirements and legislation that benefits the actual user/person whose information has been exposed. I’ve been signed up for haveibeenpwned an excellent website by Troy Hunt. You enter your email, and it tells you what breaches your personal information has been found in. I was going to say “if any”. But of course your data will be there, especially after breaches like the River City Media (RCM) “spammer gate” where 1.4 billion peoples’ email accounts, … Continue reading Legislating hacking/data exposure responses

Privacy: Europe vs the USA

On a day when the likelihood is you’ve been bombarded with GDPR emails from companies you’ve done business with, or just whose websites you’ve registered with, there is no better comparison of the difference between how the European Commision and the USA are dealing with our privacy. While the new General Data Protection Regulation comes into force tomorrow (May 25th), which isn’t as many think, a reaction to the Facebook privacy scandal, the regulation which took seven years of negotiation, and will force changes in a braod range of industries, including, but not limited to technology, advertising, medicine and banking. … Continue reading Privacy: Europe vs the USA

Europe vs Facebook

The questions that Zuckerberg never answered, including this: How will you be remembered: As one the three big internet giants along with Steve Jobs and Bill Gates who have enriched our world, or as the genius who created a digital monster that is destroying our democracy and society? https://gizmodo.com/mark-zuckerberg-played-parliament-for-fools-and-theyre-1826227452 Continue reading Europe vs Facebook

There is no British history without the history of empire

Off the back of the British government “Winrush” scandal, The right honorable, David Lammy MP, made the following speech. It exposes the myth of immigration for many, many millions of people. The same is true for the racial divide here in the USA. They had no choice, they didn’t want to go somewhere, they are all here, because “we” were all there. While it’s not an identical situation here in America, as much of the current immigration furore is about immigrants in the last 5o-years. There is no British history without the history of empire. I am here because you were … Continue reading There is no British history without the history of empire

External link to Zuckerberg/Facebook called to UK Parliament

Zuckerberg/Facebook called to UK Parliament

Official now: UK Commons committee writes to Mark Zuckerberg asking him to get on a plane and front an inquiry in London. pic.twitter.com/VHxd2opClh — Mark Di Stefano 🤙🏻 (@MarkDiStef) March 20, 2018 Of course as a US Citizen, Zuckerberg can’t … Continue reading Zuckerberg/Facebook called to UK Parliament

Facebook has a lot of questions to answer

I teetered on the brink of deleting my facebook account last year. I removed the main app from my phone and a Windows tablet, and have never installed messenger. When it came down to it I balked at the final step. I did ulike pretty much all businesses and pages, as well as unfriended anyone not a real contact/friend etc. The utility of facebook is still too great to remove myself completely. Although frankly I’ve had better results contacting businesses through Twitter and getting things done. Given it’s reach, facebook still remains useful. Delete the apps Facebook, Facebook Messenger, Instagram … Continue reading Facebook has a lot of questions to answer

Retail vs Investment Banking

I’ve no idea what long term this change will make, but was delighted to receive this notification from my UK Bank, first direct, and HSBC subsidiary. Something we are (very) unlikely to see here in the US in the near future. What is says is We wanted to let you know that in line with new regulations introduced after the global financial crisis, later this year HSBC will be changing the way it’s structured in the United Kingdom (UK). The new rules mean all banks with deposits of UKP 25bn or more will have to keep their “retail banking” business seperate … Continue reading Retail vs Investment Banking