We should have land tax, capital gains (per Dan above, longer you hold, less you pay), and a simple Tobin Tax on transactions.
Tax zero-sum games and other vices you want to discourage like speculation, land hogging, and parasitic behavior. Don't tax things you want to encourage like making the best use of the land and productivity. Tax land, not real estate. Tax speculation not income from productive work. Encourage long term investment while discouraging short term speculation and leading the market.
A Tobin tax, suggested by Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences Laureate economist James Tobin, was originally defined as a tax on all spot conversions of one currency into another. The tax is intended to put a penalty on short-term financial round-trip excursions into another currency.
Who requires the information used for SSL certs? The centralization of that data seems to be the issue, not the encryption offered by using HTTPS.
You can self-sign an SSL certificate or use one from any organization you trust. The question is whether or not the client trusts your certificates or your buddy's certificates.
SSL certificates create a chain of trust. A big company like Verisign is trusted by the world in general because their bacon comes from ensuring that trust. Other big companies like DigiCert or your big bank may also be trusted by you and many others. If you trust organization A and organization A vouches for organizations B and C, then you accept the certificates of B and C that are signed by organization A. This creates a chain of trust.
If anyone in that chain violates the trust and is caught, certificates revocations are published and the violator is no longer part of that chain of trust. It's up to the end user to not supply any information to the untrusted party.
Can you create your own chain of trust free from fees and interference of others? Sure, but you have to convince other people to trust you and your chain.
In reality, most web users just find SSL certificates annoying and will trust any site regardless of SSL and whose signing which certificates. Even if their browser gives them a scare notice, they'll just ignore it. After all, these are the same people who click EULA without reading them. It's just a nuisance to them. The average user doesn't know who to trust or why and has long given up on even seeking a sense of security or privacy. Convenience is the only thing that the end user can measure, and so it's the only metric that matters to him.
...is weak as there is a far better alternative. Tax capital gains at T = 1.00 - 0,01m where m is the number of months an equity is held. It gives you all of the advantages of the financial transaction tax, with the possible exception of as much tax revenue, without any of the disadvantages. It also is far more effective at preventing speculation, bubbles, crashes, fraud, and insider trading.
A financial transaction tax could likely raise over $105 billion annually
...which is not necessarily a good thing. Any tax can be imposed to raise $105 billion annually, but that money comes from people. It's inherently a zero-sum game. Transferring wealth from the people to government is not necessarily a good or a bad thing. It depends on how much and under what circumstances as well as what the money is used for and what it would have been used for otherwise.
The driver of a Tesla reports that the Autopilot feature in his car stopped him from hitting a pedestrian last Saturday night, in Washington, D.C. The report was included in a message—with the driver’s identifying details blacked out—posted on Twitter by Tesla CEO chief Elon Musk. Musk noted that the story was confirmed by data logs.
Because https actually is completely irrelevant to Google's business (why should a search engine care about encryption of sites it ranks?) this makes me suspect that the NSA itself has told Google to do this.
Perhaps, but I don't think so. Google has a pretty anit-NSA culture. Google has supported net neutrality, opposed SOPA, and been as transparent about DCMA takedowns and NSA security letters as the law allows them to be. Google is mostly liberal.
Yes, Google makes its money from ads and marketing, and as such has many perverse incentives and like all ad-revenue companies is terrible on privacy. However, Google does have legitimate reasons to promote HTTPS Everywhere.
First, this stops the vast majority of phishing sites, malware sites, and browser hijack attempts. Second, this gives peace of mind to Google search users that their computer won't stop functioning if they click a search result and malware infects their computer. Third, HTTPS Everywhere actually strongly limits the ability of the NSA, Russian hackers employed by Trump, terrorists, and criminals from spying on you. Right now the vast majority of traffic on the Internet is sent unecrypted and is easily captured and analyzed by the NSA and other nefarious organizations. Sure the NSA can still capture and decrypt HTTPS traffic but doing so comes at a cost. They can't decrypt all the traffic and so they can't do as much fishing as they would under HTTP.
I would expect the NSA to oppose HTTPS Everywhere. And certainly they would oppose enhancements to HTTPS that would make it computationally impossible for them to decrypt all but a few HTTPS streams in a year.
Overall I'm for HTTPS Everywhere. It will do far more good than harm.
Of course as soon as I think this thought, I get an email from Fidelity telling me that they will implement 2-factor authentication on their site, so to log in, you have to get a code on your phone. Meaning that they then have your cellphone number, and therefore your location, and the location of your home, work, all your friends..
This is far more objectionable. Basically smartphone adoption has reached a critical mass that enables large companies to force everyone to use smartphones and agree to giving out their location and contacts. This is very Orwellian.
Basically companies want to eliminate one of the greatest and worst attributes of the Internet: anonymity. Anonymity is the last bastion of privacy. The two terms mean completely different things, but in a world were you have no privacy rights, the only way to achieve any kind of privacy is through anonymity. However, anonymity is a poor substitute for privacy and has many drawbacks such as trolling, fraud, spam, identity theft, bullying, etc. Many businesses large and small are turning to either smartphone numbers or Facebook authentication to reduce or eliminate anonymity and the problems that it causes. However, you are right to suspect that they also want to eliminate privacy and free speech and want to spy on people and their associates for both marketing and political reasons.
Unfortunately phone numbers are controlled by the telephony industry and you cannot take that control from them and set up a free federation of phone numbers. The only way to oppose this erosion of liberty is for people in mass to simply refuse to do business with companies that face these conditions upon them, and that's not going to happen in banking as it's quite difficult to create a free bank. Quite difficult, but not impossible.
If we could gather a group of good people competent in various fields -- banking, finance, investment, databases, programming, marketing -- that were willing to spend the time incorporating an online only bank and developing the best online banking (and later investment) experience that in no way screwed over the customer but rather made its money from advertising and a small cut of peer-to-peer lending, then we could organically grow this company and challenge big banks. Profitability could be achieved in a little as a year, becoming a decent size bank would take at least a decade. It would be a lot of hard work, but it would be fun.
I could handle the IT part: database, domain programming, web applications, etc. Eventually we would need a team of programmers. But before that's even possible, we'd need honest and willing people on the finance side who are interested in creating a profitable bank, but not one that profits as much as the unethical big banks. 1% profit on a billion dollars a year is still ten million a year. If you get big enough, you don't need to make that much of a profit margin when almost all the work is done by computer and costs are largely fixed.
... payback's a bitch, isn't it?
-- Julian Assange to Hillary Clinton
Hillary Clinton called Julian Assange a traitor for revealing the crimes and ethics breaches of politicians, revelations that in no way caused any national security threats and cause absolutely no deaths. Now Assange has revealed evidence demonstrating that Clinton herself compromised national security. Oh, the hypocrisy of persecuting whistle blowers under the weak and transparent guise of national security while compromising that national security yourself. I have no problem nailing hypocrites to the wall.
At one point, Mr. Peston said: “Plainly, what you are saying, what you are publishing, hurts Hillary Clinton. Would you prefer Trump to be president?”
Mr. Assange replied that what Mr. Trump would do as president was “completely unpredictable.” By contrast, he thought it was predictable that Mrs. Clinton would wield power in two ways he found problematic.
First, citing his “personal perspective,” Mr. Assange accused Mrs. Clinton of having been among those pushing to indict him after WikiLeaks disseminated a quarter of a million diplomatic cables during her tenure as secretary of state.
In addition, Mr. Assange criticized Mrs. Clinton for pushing to intervene in Libya in 2011 when Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi was cracking down on Arab Spring protesters; he said that the result of the NATO air war was Libya’s collapse into anarchy, enabling the Islamic State to flourish.
Once again Assange is correct. Clinton is clearly worse than Trump, as bad as Trump is. Trump is chaos. Clinton is structured evil.
1:45 The more you donate, the closer you get to sit to Obama
How is any of this surprising in any way. It's been this way since antiquity.
America has a system of open bribery. Unless we overturn Citizen's United and the stupid idea that money equals speech, this shit will never end.
The following reforms need to be changed.
1. Overturning Citizens United.
2. Rewriting the First Amendment to make it clear that speech is equal speech for all and not based on money.
3. Outlawing any revenue (not just profit, but revenue) from political ads.
4. Fully publicly financed campaigns with very low budgets.
5. Absolutely no donor anonymity for any political donations of any kind.
6. If a politician accepts any money or anything of monetary value from any person or organization, then that politician cannot engage in any government business that affects or is affected by that donator.
7. Senators and representatives cannot own any stock of any company while in office and up to five years after leaving office. This is critical because the biggest insider traders are in Congress and their personal profits greatly affects legislation. Any politician who finds this unacceptable simply can find another job. You and I can't use our jobs to conduct insider trading. Neither should congressmen.
It's stupid petty shit like that which demonstrates why all Bernie supporters should refrain from voting Clinton. They have four choices, all symbolic, but casting a vote is symbolic anyway since your vote isn't going to amount to shit anyway. So it sends a message and nothing else, that's still better than nothing. The four choices they have are:
1. Write in Bernie. It would be wonderful if Hillary loses AND the write-ins for Bernie are more than enough to have had elected her if they were votes for her. That's the ultimate way to send a message.
2. Vote for Trump. You lose the clarity of the message, but it counts doubly against Clinton.
3. Stay home. This is the worst choice because you can still vote for Democrats for the House and Senate if you don't stay home.
4. Vote for a third party candidate. Really, why not just write-in Bernie instead?
Oklahoma’s platform, for example, opposes “the elimination of laws against sodomy” and asserts that being gay is a “chosen lifestyle,” not a “genetic trait” — a claim that is disputed by top medical organizations. Texas’ platform states that “the practice of homosexuality tears at the fabric of society and contributes to the breakdown of the family unit.”
This is caused by religion, specifically Christianity. Please let all Christian apologists know that tolerance of Christianity has very real negative consequences. Sure Islam is worse, but there is no up side and many down sides to Christianity.
Have you ever heard of a homophobic atheist? Religion drives irrational behavior and beliefs. Because of this, no religion is free from negative consequences.