The Biometric Threat

the-biometric-threat

15-02-20 06:37:00,

Authored by Jayati Ghosh via Project Syndicate,

Around the world, governments are succumbing to the allure of biometric identification systems. To some extent, this may be inevitable, given the burden of demands and expectations placed on modern states. But no one should underestimate the risks these technologies pose.

Biometric identification systems use individuals’ unique intrinsic physical characteristics – fingerprints or handprints, facial patterns, voices, irises, vein maps, or even brain waves – to verify their identity. Governments have applied the technology to verify passports and visas, identify and track security threats, and, more recently, to ensure that public benefits are correctly distributed.

Private companies, too, have embraced biometric identification systems. Smartphones use fingerprints and facial recognition to determine when to “unlock.” Rather than entering different passwords for different services – including financial services – users simply place their finger on a button on their phone or gaze into its camera lens.

It is certainly convenient. And, at first glance, it might seem more secure: someone might be able to find out your password, but how could they replicate your essential biological features?

But, as with so many other convenient technologies, we tend to underestimate the risks associated with biometric identification systems. India has learned about them the hard way, as it has expanded its scheme to issue residents a “unique identification number,” or Aadhaar, linked to their biometrics.

Originally, the Aadhaar program’s primary goal was to manage government benefits and eliminate “ghost beneficiaries” of public subsidies. But it has now been expanded to many spheres: everything from opening a bank account to enrolling children in school to gaining admission to a hospital now requires an Aadhaar. More than 90% of India’s population has enrolled in the program.

But serious vulnerabilities have emerged. Biometric verification may seem like the ultimate tech solution, but human error creates significant risks, especially when data-collection procedures are not adequately established or implemented. In India, the government wanted to enroll a lot of people quickly in the Aadhaar program, so data collection was outsourced to small service providers with mobile machines.

If a fingerprint or iris scan is even slightly tilted or otherwise wrongly positioned, it may not match future verification scans.

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The Threat 5G Poses to Human Health – Global Research

the-threat-5g-poses-to-human-health-–-global-research

15-12-19 04:48:00,

The crime scene was straight out of an Alfred Hitchcock movie. One hundred and fifty dead birds lay sprawled on the ground, fallen out of trees in a park in The Hague, Netherlands.

The second such occurrence last autumn made Dutch citizens look up and wonder. With robust starlings turned upside-down at their feet, the usual suspects of disease, pollution, and foul play were dismissed.

The culprit stood atop a nearby train station—a mast with new 5G network antennas. The test of the telecom system failed in more ways than imagined. As a result, the Dutch ministry postponed its 5G-spectrum auction until 2020.

For decades, the telecommunications industry and governments haven’t invested enough money on safety studies of electromagnetic field (EMF) and radio frequency (RF), and their effects on human health.

This neglect is despite a joint 2011 press release from the World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) that stated they found EMF radiation “possibly carcinogenic to humans.”

Radio-frequency pollution has been overlooked for its potential health effects on people. It’s not just the rollout of 5G networks that are a cause for concern. Extremely low frequencies from Wi-Fi routers, hotspots, and cellphones also pose a serious threat, particularly to children.

The Promise of the Digital Age

In a couple of years, 5G networks will become the connecting digital tissue for drones, autonomous vehicles, blockchains, the internet of things, supply chains, smart homes, smart meters, smart appliances, smart buildings, and smart cities.

The allure of 5G’s super-fast download speeds will be broad and pervasive, but will come with a hidden cost of invisible RF transmissions, electromagnetic radiation, and constant receiving/transmitting of Wi-Fi signals that most people overlook as benign.

Dr. Martin Pall, professor emeritus at Washington State University and one of the leading EMF experts in the world, presented at the National Institute of Health about the dangers of 5G, stating:

“Each of these EMF effects will lead to existential threats to our survival … In mice, EMF led to a drop in reproduction to essentially zero. … 5G will incur much higher frequencies and pulsations to that of being in a microwave.”

From Pall’s last slide,

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Real threat to democracy: Media meddle in Democrat debate by siding with Harris, demonizing Gabbard

real-threat-to-democracy:-media-meddle-in-democrat-debate-by-siding-with-harris,-demonizing-gabbard

02-08-19 09:06:00,

Why would the most talked-about candidate at the Democratic Party debate be almost entirely invisible on Twitter and attacked on cable networks afterward? Perhaps because the establishment protects its own.

Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) was the most searched-for candidate in every single state after Wednesday night’s second Democratic debate, according to Google trends. Conservative news outlets Breitbart and the Drudge Report also declared her the victor, with 50 and 39 percent of the vote respectively.

However, you wouldn’t know that if you had been watching CNN or MSNBC. While Gabbard is a foreign-policy focused candidate who has repeatedly stated her opposition to “regime change wars” abroad and her appetite for criminal justice reform at home, MSNBC couldn’t move past a meeting Gabbard had with Syrian President Bashar Assad in 2017, in a bid to bring a resolution to the county’s long conflict.

Tulsi Gabbard explodes on MSNBC after they repeatedly press her for meeting Bashar al-Assad, who gasses children: “these are talking points that Kamala Harris and her campaign are feeding you because she’s refusing to address the questions”

Gabbard claims it’s “propaganda” pic.twitter.com/FvRMs23RFR

— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) August 1, 2019

Pressed to denounce Assad, Gabbard snapped. “You’re talking about a meeting that took place, what, three years ago?” she shot back. “And every time I come back here on MSNBC, you guys talk to me about these issues, it sounds like these are talking points that Kamala Harris and her campaign are feeding you because she’s refusing to address the questions that were posed to her…this is where the propaganda comes in.”

The attacks on Gabbard indeed followed her debate skirmish with Harris, a senator from California and another contender for the Democrats’ presidential nomination – but more on that in a moment.

CNN also used the Assad meeting as a club to bash Gabbard. On Wednesday night, Anderson Cooper pushed the congresswoman for two-and-a-half minutes to denounce Assad as a “murderer and a torturer.” The Washington Post got in on the act on Thursday, declaring in a headline that “Tulsi gabbard’s Syria record shows why she can’t be president.” 

Gabbard seems to have attracted all this media flak only because she “destroyed” the establishment darling Harris during the second debate.

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‘Fake news’ a bigger threat than terrorism, poll finds – but what exactly is it?

‘fake-news’-a-bigger-threat-than-terrorism,-poll-finds-–-but-what-exactly-is-it?

06-06-19 10:10:00,

A new poll has found that more Americans feel threatened by the creation and spread of fake news and misinformation than terrorism, violent crime, or illegal immigration. As for who creates the fake news, that’s up for debate.

Half of all Americans see made-up news as a bigger problem that other key security issues, a Pew Research Center poll published Tuesday has found. Though drug addiction and affordability of healthcare remain the biggest issues in the American consciousness, “made-up news and information” beat out violent crime, climate change, racism, illegal immigration and terrorism in the survey.

% of Americans who say ___ is a very big problem for the US today:
Drug addiction 70%
Affordable health care 67
US political system 52
Inequality 51
Made-up news 50
Violent crime 49
Climate change 46
Racism 40
Illegal immigration 38
Terrorism 34
Sexism 26https://t.co/HqheK0Ah9spic.twitter.com/b58TUcv137

— Pew Research Center (@pewresearch) June 5, 2019

More than two thirds – 68 percent – say fake news shakes their confidence in government, 54 percent say it weakens their trust in each other, and 51 percent say it impacts political leaders’ ability to “get work done.”

Respondents blame political leaders and activists for much of the fake news circulating, but say the onus is on journalists to correct the problem. Nearly eight in ten believe that the spread of fake news should be restricted, with only 20 percent viewing it as protected under the First Amendment.

This data is all the more interesting given how vague the term “fake news” is. Though propaganda and disinformation is as old as the written word, the term took on a life of its own around 2016, when then-candidate Hillary Clinton used it to shut down conspiracy theories. Those included claims that her campaign manager John Podesta was secretly running an underage sex trafficking operation from the basement of a Washington DC pizza restaurant.

READ MORE: ‘Pizzagate’ gunman who opened fire in DC pizzeria sentenced to 4 years in prison

Buzzfeed Journalist Craig Silverman used the term “fake news” two years earlier to slam a conservative news site for publishing a false story about an ebola outbreak,

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Russiagate is #1 threat to US national security – Stephen Cohen

russiagate-is-#1-threat-to-us-national-security-–-stephen-cohen

31-05-19 04:26:00,

The systemwide US Russophobia that reached its nadir with Russiagate has created a “catastrophe” for both domestic politics and foreign relations that threatens the future of the American system, professor Stephen Cohen tells RT.

War with Russia could easily break out if the US insists on pursuing the policy of “demonization” that birthed Russiagate instead of returning to detente and cooperation, New York University professor emeritus of Russian history Stephen Cohen argues on Chris Hedges’ On Contact. While NATO deliberately antagonized post-Soviet Russia by expanding up to its borders, the US deployed missile defense systems along those borders after scrapping an arms treaty, leaving President Vladimir Putin devoid of “illusions” about the goodwill of the West – but armed with “nuclear missiles that can evade and elude any missile defense system.”

Now is the time for a serious, new arms control agreement. What do we get? Russiagate instead.”

Cohen believes the conspiracy theory – which remains front-page news in US media despite being thoroughly discredited, both by independent investigators and last month by special counsel Robert Mueller’s report – is the work of the CIA and its former director, John Brennan, who are dead set against any kind of cooperation with Russia. Attorney General William Barr, who is investigating the FBI over how the 2016 counterintelligence probe began, should take a look at Brennan and his agency, Cohen says.

If our intelligence services are off the reservation to the point that they can first try to destroy a presidential candidate and then a president…we need to know it,” Cohen says. “This is the worst scandal in American history. It’s the worst, at least, since the Civil War.” And the damage wrought by this “catastrophe” hasn’t stopped at the US border.

Also on rt.com
Pulling a Comey: How Mueller dog-whistled Democrats into impeachment of Trump

The idea that Trump is a Russian agent has been devastating to “our own institutions, to the presidency, to our electoral system, to Congress, to the American mainstream media,

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‘Huge threat to First Amendment’: US seeks to intimidate reporters by indicting Assange – journalist

‘huge-threat-to-first-amendment’:-us-seeks-to-intimidate-reporters-by-indicting-assange-–-journalist

25-05-19 08:14:00,

The prosecution of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is nothing but an intimidation campaign waged by the US to discourage journalists from revealing Washington’s dirty secrets, journalist Cassandra Fairbanks told RT.

The US is apparently seeking to lock Assange away for the rest of his life as an example for all other journalists around the world to see, Fairbanks said, commenting on the latest indictment against the whistleblower announced by a federal grand jury. Each of the 17 additional charges introduced under the Espionage Act carries a 10-year prison sentence, meaning that the Wikileaks founder could face up to 175 years in jail in total.

Fairbanks believes Assange might actually face a much more gruesome fate.

“I am not even convinced that they will not give him the death penalty. There are other espionage act charges that carry the death penalty,” she told RT, adding that the US is likely to “throw everything they can at him.”

Also on rt.com
175 yrs in jail for revealing war crimes? Where’s MSM outrage over persecution of Assange?

Assange’s prosecution goes beyond simply seeking to punish a man who exposed US atrocities, including the indiscriminate killing of civilians in Iraq as well as torture and mistreatment of prisoners, according to the journalist.

They are sending a message that if you publish some leaks or something that the [US] government does not like, that is going to ruin your whole life. You can potentially go to jail forever.

The US government basically wants the people to give up hope that they will have any future at all if they ever dare to go against Washington, Fairbanks said.

“If there was something so important that you felt you needed to leak it, you could know that you would still have some of your life left afterwards. Now they are sending the message that you won’t,” she told RT.

The entire campaign against Assange is “a huge threat to the First Amendment, especially for the national security reporters,” as it severely limits journalistic freedoms and puts reporters under indirect pressure from the US authorities.

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‘Time to end the nuclear threat’: Graham hints at war hours after Trump-Kim summit stalls

time-to-end-the-nuclear-threat-graham-hints-at-war-hours-after-trump-kim-summit-stalls

01-03-19 10:15:00,

Sen. Lindsey Graham is already saber-rattling at North Korea less than a day after President Donald Trump and leader Kim Jong-un ended their summit amicably without a signed agreement. Graham, it seems, doesn’t handle peace well.

While the South Carolina Republican applauded Trump for walking away from the negotiating table rather than agreeing to anything less than “complete denuclearization” from the DPRK, Graham didn’t seem to grasp the concept of incremental progress, or improved diplomatic relations, resorting to threats and dusting off Trump’s own puerile name-calling from over a year ago.

Also on rt.com
Kim willing to denuclearize, allow US liaison in Pyongyang as 2nd day of Hanoi summit begins

We must not go back to the status quo,” Graham warned, even getting in a jibe at “Rocket Man” – though Kim has not conducted a missile test since 2017 and reportedly told Trump he has no plans to do so.

If negotiations fail, it would be time to end the nuclear threat from North Korea – one way or the other,” Graham said ominously. Both Kim and Trump, meanwhile, left the summit looking full of optimism that a deal would be struck in the future.

Graham has historically been among the most trigger-happy of his trigger-happy party, eclipsed perhaps only by his friend the late Sen. John McCain, who never met a country a good bombing wouldn’t fix. Graham famously predicted in 2017 that there was a 30-percent chance Trump would preemptively nuke North Korea to prevent Kim from developing a weapon capable of hitting the US, and he has been among the most strident voices excoriating the president whenever Trump hints at pulling troops out of Syria, Afghanistan, or any of the other endless conflicts in which the US military is involved around the globe.

Also on rt.com
Lindsey Graham warns of ‘Iraq on steroids’ if Trump doesn’t delay Syria withdrawal

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The Worldwide Threat to the Biodiversity of Insects – Global Research

the-worldwide-threat-to-the-biodiversity-of-insects-8211-global-research

12-02-19 08:47:00,

Decline of the Entomofauna: A Review of Its Drivers

Biodiversity of insects is threatened worldwide. Here, we present a comprehensive review of 73 historical reports of insect declines from across the globe, and systematically assess the underlying drivers. Our work reveals dramatic rates of decline that may lead to the extinction of 40% of the world’s insect species over the next few decades.

In terrestrial ecosystems, Lepidoptera, Hymenoptera and dung beetles (Coleoptera) appear to be the taxa most affected, whereas four major aquatic taxa (Odonata, Plecoptera, Trichoptera and Ephemeroptera) have already lost a considerable proportion of species.

Affected insect groups not only include specialists that occupy particular ecological niches, but also many common and generalist species. Concurrently, the abundance of a small number of species is increasing; these are all adaptable, generalist species that are occupying the vacant niches left by the ones declining. Among aquatic insects, habitat and dietary generalists, and pollutant-tolerant species are replacing the large biodiversity losses experienced in waters within agricultural and urban settings. The main drivers of species declines appear to be in order of importance:

i) habitat loss and conversion to intensive agriculture and urbanisation;

ii) pollution, mainly that by synthetic pesticides and fertilisers;

iii) biological factors, including pathogens and introduced species; and

iv) climate change.

The latter factor is particularly important in tropical regions, but only affects a minority of species in colder climes and mountain settings of temperate zones. A rethinking of current agricultural practices, in particular a serious reduction in pesticide usage and its substitution with more sustainable, ecologically-based practices, is urgently needed to slow or reverse current trends, allow the recovery of declining insect populations and safeguard the vital ecosystem services they provide. In addition, effective remediation technologies should be applied to clean polluted waters in both agricultural and urban environments.

To read the full scientific report click here

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For Arab eyes only: Threat of war vanishes from Israeli military’s English-language Twitter account

for-arab-eyes-only-threat-of-war-vanishes-from-israeli-militarys-english-language-twitter-account

13-11-18 01:49:00,

A thinly-veiled threat to unleash the full military power of Israel on residents of the Gaza strip is apparently meant for Arabs only, since its English-language version is now gone from an Israeli military Twitter account.

Amid the latest flare-up of hostilities between Israel and Hamas militants both sides are also battling for hearts and minds online. Part of the Israeli messaging effort was a threat on Twitter, on the account of Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), a defense ministry unit that enacts policies related to civilian issues in occupied Palestinian territories.

The threat said Hamas crossed the red line with its latest attacks and that Israel will be responding with an iron fist. “Residents of Gaza look carefully at the pictures from Operation Protective Edge in 2014 – a picture is worth a thousand words,” said the account, citing a statement by COGAT chief, Major General Kamil Abu Rukon. A composition picture showing the aftermath of airstrikes from the 2014 war in Gaza and a recent retaliation by the IDF was supplied.

But hours later the entire thread was deleted – even though the original statement on the Arabic version of COGAT’s Twitter feed remained intact. Some commenters suggested that the Israeli officials realized that such thinly-veiled threats to Palestinian civilians are not meant for the English-speaking audiences and erased it. Others suggested Twitter could have deleted it following complaints about threats of violence by other users.

It’s removed now. I don’t think it;s because they deleted it though. I think it’s because people removed the tweets as threats to to physical harm…

— Winchester (@winchesterlyon) November 12, 2018

The 2014 Israeli offensive on Gaza claimed almost 1,500 civilian lives, according to a UN count, and caused damage to buildings estimated at some $7.8 billion, with thousands of homes obliterated or severely damaged.

Considering that Gaza Strip is one of the world’s most densely populated areas and Israel maintains a blockade of the area, effectively trapping people inside, many critics see the military campaign as a form of collective punishment of Palestinians. Israel says Hamas is responsible for the civilian suffering, because it allegedly uses civilians as human shields.

Israel bombs TV station in Gaza amid massive border flare-up (PHOTO,

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The biggest threat to U.S. national security is the U.S. Government

the-biggest-threat-to-us-national-security-is-the-us.-government

07-11-18 07:10:00,

Eric Zuesse

A dictatorship does not represent the public but only the aristocracy that, behind the scenes, controls the government.

Jonathan H. Adler, Professor at Case Western University School of Law, noted, regarding George W. Bush’s secret policy for the NSA to access everyone’s phone-records, that “The metadata collection program is constitutional (at least according to Judge Kavanaugh),” and he presented Judge Kavanaugh’s entire published opinion on that. Kavanaugh’s opinion stated that the 4th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution could be shoved aside because he thinks that the ‘national security’ of the United States is more important than the Constitution. Kavanaugh wrote:

The Government’s program for bulk collection of 2 telephony metadata serves a critically important special need – preventing terrorist attacks on the United States…In my view, that critical national security need outweighs the impact on privacy occasioned by this program….

The Fourth Amendment allows governmental searches and seizures without individualized suspicion when the Government demonstrates a sufficient “special need” – that is, a need beyond the normal need for law enforcement – that outweighs the intrusion on individual liberty…

In sum, the Fourth Amendment does not bar the Government’s bulk collection of telephony metadata under this program.

Kavanaugh said that since the 4th Amendment excludes only “unreasonable” searches and seizures (such as seizures of all of this private information from everyone), it doesn’t exclude the “bulk collection of 2 telephony metadata” (collection of both phone numbers in each phone conversation from and/or to anyone in the United States), because a “critical national security need [“preventing terrorist attacks on the United States”] outweighs the impact on privacy occasioned by this program.”

As a consequence, for each American, the U.S. federal Government knows everyone whom you call, and who calls you — it knows all of your phone-contacts — and it does so because everything in the U.S. Constitution can be overridden by any “critical national security need” such as “preventing terrorist attacks” such as occurred on 9/11, which attacks hadn’t at all been enabled by the then-existing lack of such police-state measures here. Kavanaugh’s opinion simply ignored that fact — didn’t even discuss it.

Instead of that’s having produced the ‘intelligence failure’,

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The Biggest Threat to US National Security Is the US Government

The Biggest Threat to US National Security Is the US Government

08-10-18 05:58:00,

On Saturday, October 6, 2018, Brett Kavanaugh officially became Associate Justice Kavanaugh of the United States Supreme Court. His accession to the Court marked two extremely significant events in American history.

The first is the return of the Court to what is being called a “conservative majority”, where five of the justices are actually strict constitutional constructionists that accept the US Constitution as it stands without trying to “adapt it” to the present whims of society. The remaining justices are reputed to do precisely this, through their language of the Constitution as a “living document” that implies malleability.

In short, it appears that the days of imposing things, like legalized abortion and homosexual marriage through the manipulation of the Court System rather than through the passage of legislation, are probably over, or at least significantly hampered. We need one more liberal judge to retire or die for President Trump to seal the deal, but this is the first time the court has had a conservative majority in at least fifty years.

The second significant event is actually very interesting because its existence was largely brought on by the prevalence of the activist Court over these last fifty years. That is the extraordinarily aggressive and activist Left, which, rightly sensing their immediate doom, came out in droves and did everything possible to block and destroy Judge Kavanaugh’s chance at nomination.

It should be known that they did have successes:

  • Breitbart.com, The New York Post and other sources on October 2 noted that Judge Kavanaugh will no longer be teaching at Harvard Law School. This came about after a reported “outcry” from hundreds of alumni:

Hundreds of alumni signed a letter calling on law school Dean John Manning to “rescind” Kavanaugh’s position as lecturer and prohibit him from teaching a three-week class titled “The Supreme Court Since 2005” this winter.

“We believe that Judge Kavanaugh’s appointment as an HLS lecturer sends a message to law students, and in particular female students, that powerful men are above the law, and that obstructive, inappropriate behavior will be rewarded,” says the letter, which the newspaper said is available online.

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Is SO2 the Real Threat – not CO2? | Armstrong Economics

Is SO2 the Real Threat – not CO2? | Armstrong Economics

07-08-18 06:26:00,

It has snowed in Alberta, Canada on August 1st in the dead of summer. Such strange events like this have not been common. Europe is burning from heat when buildings do not even have air conditioning because they never needed it. The concern that we are headed into a volcanic weather event really needs our attention. Volcanos emit C02, but they are a major source of something far worse – SO2. We have all heard of the London Fog. However, in 1952, some 4,000 people in Britain died from breathing in the fog.

Volcanos emit a lot of Sulfur dioxide (SO2) which smells like rotten eggs. Humans also contribute by burning coal and other fossil fuels which are the largest source of sulfur dioxide from human activities. However, volcanoes and forest fires are THE major natural contributors. What is important to understand is that sulfur dioxide is a pollutant that does impact the climate. Once SO2 is in the atmosphere, it can easily form sulfate ions. These are negatively charged particles made of up of sulfur and oxygen atoms. Since they are negatively charged, sulfate ions combine with water vapor in the atmosphere and then form small droplets of sulfuric acid (H2SO4). You may hear of this as acid rain. CO2 does not act in this manner.

When a volcano erupts. we then see huge amounts of sulfur dioxide are released into the stratosphere which will then convert to sulfates. There is a qualification needed here because sulfates formed at lower altitudes are removed from the atmosphere in just a few weeks through settling and precipitation. However, the SO2 emission from volcanos reach the upper bounds of the atmosphere and create aerosols that are mainly tiny droplets of sulfuric acid that then stay in the atmosphere for about two years. These SO2 droplets reflect incoming solar radiation back into space yet absorb both incoming solar radiation and outgoing infrared radiation. The net result, is simply that SO2 reduces the amount of energy reaching the lower atmosphere and Earth’s surface. Hence, we get global cooling of the lower atmosphere and Earth’s surface.

Consequently, it is the volcanic eruptions are of considerable impact on global climate and are a proven fact rather than theory as is the case with CO2.

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The Biggest Threat To The Internet As We Know It | Article 13 – Lang Leve Europa!

20-06-18 10:57:00,

Het is vandaag en morgen bijltjesdag voor het vrije internet. De EU gaat besluiten over de legaliteit van uploaden en het plaatsen van links. De waanzin van de EU, en de waanzin van de wensen van het grootbedrijf achter deze sloop-het-internet wetgeving, is hier reeds uitgebreid aan bod gekomen afgelopen weken. Vandaag aan het woord Stefan Molyneux met een scherpe analyse van Artikel 13 specifiek.

SaveYourInternet.EU: “On 20 June, the European Parliament will vote on the Copyright Directive. The votes of 10 Members of the parliament will determine if the Internet remains open and free from censorship in the EU. Tell them you need them to protect your Internet against surveillance and censorship machines, as the defenders of EU citizens! Give them the power to be Heroes!”

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