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US Secret Service admits it ‘has no sense of humor’…

5 Jun

According to the BBC, the US Secret Service has put out an open tender for someone to invent a program that can ‘detect sarcasm and false positives’.

Secret Service...? The coolest cats on the block. And I ain't talkin' Celsius or town planning...

Secret Service…? The coolest cats on the block. And I ain’t talkin’ Celsius or town planning…

The tender documents are available here .

An un-named source at the Secret Service explained:

“…As usual, we were listening in to American citizens talking to people in communist-infiltrated European countries like Britain, France, Italy…you know – the usual low-life death-bed states.

“We overheard a conversation between Mrs Amelia Krutz of Spokane and her so-called friend in Vienna. Vienna is right on the border with Communist Russia so we naturally zoomed in and went to Black Alert.

“Mrs Krutz was heard to say ‘…he had the biggest weapon I’ve ever seen! He screwed me to the bed and then took a cab to the White House. I pity the next girl who gets in his way…!’

“We evacuated the White House, told all females under the age of eighteen to stay indoors and we then sent a carpenter to Mrs Amelia Krutz’s house, fearing the worst. I just can’t understand these people. She was most ungrateful.”

When asked what kind of program the US Secret Service needed, the source replied:

“Something small and black in a shiny case with some discreet brushed carbon fiber edging. It has to look the part.”

The successful code writer who comes up with the program that the US Secret Service buys will be rewarded handsomely. Six weeks later, they shall be found in a local park, having apparently fallen asleep under a tree that was being cut down.

 

 

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The FBI, marijuana and young hackers: Morality hides under the table.

22 May

“..the best ones smoke weed, so we can’t use ’em…”

 

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The director of the FBI, James Comey, has reportedly told the Wall Street Journal that he may have to review the prohibition on drug-taking among his workforce because he cannot employ the best of the best when it comes to hackers.

At first glance, this comment may seem almost comical. Indeed, Comey is now back-pedalling furiously and saying it was meant as a joke. But it may still be a truth spoken in jest.

The FBI does not employ people who have used drugs in the last three years. The FBI wants to recruit hackers. So, they recruited a load of hackers who haven’t used drugs in the last three years. You can guess from Comey’s words how well it all worked out. Now, the FBI wants the ones who are trousered, minced, absolutely off their face on skunk – because the hackers the FBI currently have are not as good.

Can you imagine how the FBI hackers who are about to be fired feel? There you are in your navy blue skirt or your Walmart charcoal pants. You parked your car perfectly in the car park, neither too far to the left nor right. Suddenly, a security guard pulls your chair away and marches you up to the human resources department.

A woman you have never met then hands you an envelope with a letter of reference and tells you that they have done all they can to find an alternative position for you within the FBI but to no avail. Then, she nods to the security guard who walks you out to the car park.

As you pass your old desk, you see that it is now occupied by an eighteen year old who has his slammed Vans resting on your immaculate Apple and is taking a selfie on his iPhone.

You are toast.

This hacker does more in four hours than you did in three months.

You find the Hudson River and you jump into it.

 

The Fantastic Dilemma…?

It would seem reasonable that our offices of high authority and power do not employ habitual drug takers. Drug taking is both illegal and begs questions about the competence of a worker to do their job properly. But what happens if you are trying to arrest criminals who hide behind the tightest web security? The best help may come from those deep inside the business we call ‘code writing’ (if it is legal) or  ‘hacking’ (if it is illegal). These people often smoke joints and eat pizza.

The top hackers often take drugs. I mean, would you really leave a message on the FBI’s server at Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington saying: “Love the suits you guys wear!”  if you were sober and law-abiding? Besides, hacking is a long game that stretches your concentration and intelligence over many straight hours. The USAAF pump Speed into their fighter pilots so why can’t a hacker stock up on some weed and Ben & Jerry’s?

Perhaps James Comey just got sick and tired of having his weekly email to his staff persistently replaced by a picture of a lol-cat and that print of Bob Marley smoking a joint. He’s out for revenge. Book the kid. Think laterally.

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Which brings us neatly to…

If you are a right-leaning law-abiding citizen, then you probably believe that the FBI go around all the top universities and pick out the brightest code writers and sit them down in the back of the black Suburban and say:

‘Forget Pfizer. Come and work for us.’

If you are a left-leaning law abiding citizen, then you know damn well that the FBI stake out a sixteen year old as he or she hacks into their headmaster’s bank account – the one that pays for the dwarf to whip him – and they sit him or her down in the front room with their parents and say:

‘Forget McDonald’s. Come and work for us.’

‘I can’t. I take drugs.’

(mother faints)

‘Damn.’

 

Can you spot the massive…er…half-truth in all this?

Just because the FBI cannot themselves employ drug-taking hackers doesn’t mean that they don’t use their services.

The FBI contract out this kind of work to a bunch of private firms that do employ drug-taking hackers. Those firms then invoice the FBI for ‘code writing services and program viability analysis’. Everybody is happy.

 

Then, in May 2014, the FBI notice that, whereas the FBI all drive around in four year old Chevrolets, these firms that go by the name of Yellow Penguin Computing, Zed Labz, Drelb Inc. – all drive three month old Ferraris.

 

When your in-laws are outlaws…

James Comey, Director of the FBI cannot have that. It sticks in his craw. Yet he cannot employ drug takers. He needs a solution. He dips his toe into the waters of popular opinion. He says he might have to look a the situation.

If he is successful, then any government department or agency may soon be allowed to employ drug-takers as well.

There will soon be no difference whatsoever between the moral values of society, outlaws and the elite who rule them both. Just like the end of alcohol Prohibition, the questions over morality will melt away. We all know that the current prohibition of marijuana serves no public good. It merely boosts the wealth of dealers – the bootleggers of old.

But the FBI cannot employ the top hackers unless marijuana is legalised across the whole of the US. It is a nationwide agency. Worse still – until that day, the barrier between what is legal and what is illegal becomes arbitrary and selective. Existing laws already flatly ignore criminality within crime-fighting agencies.

You were stopped for speeding by a cop who you believe was off his face on Nepalese black at the time?  Good luck with the appeal. You believe that your local police are paid off by drug dealers? Bring us the evidence and we’ll pay for your headstone.

That is not a good forest for society to venture into. Either marijuana is legal or it is not.

However, could it just be that James B Comey, director of the FBI, is in fact merely lending his weight to the campaign to legalise marijuana?

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MH370: Boeing and MA: Have you lost your integrity over the Indian Ocean?

28 Mar
If I lost a jetliner, then I would really try HARD to find it.

If I lost a jetliner, then I would try REALLY HARD to find it.

With sincere and passionate respect for the relatives of those who flew on MH370, three questions still remain.

1) Why have Boeing (the manufacturer of the missing jetliner) still not made any public statement that was worth writing down on a cigarette packet?

2) Why have Malaysian Airlines (the owner of the missing jetliner) still not made any public statement that was worth worth writing down on a cigarette packet?

3)Why have all respected world news agencies still not made any public statement that was worth worth writing down on a cigarette packet?

Are we witnessing a ‘new dawn’ for public relations initiatives?  The silence is both astonishing and inept. It is not acceptable for either Boeing nor MA to argue that they are doing much for the relatives behind the scenes. They are clearly not. Hotels are cheap as a shield against being sued into bankruptcy.

The “Holiday Inn Upgrade” offers stink of corporate lawyers being too scared to do the right thing and thrusting money in the place of  honesty and integrity.

Boeing: You are pushing the cause of air-crash investigation back over sixty years through your reluctance to share files.

Malaysian Airlines: Remember Pan Am?

BBC Worldwide: If you can’t sell it, sit on it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MH370: Boeing break their corporate silence with…official silence.

15 Mar

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The Boeing Company has uploaded their latest press release on their corporate website.

If you read their ‘About Us’ page, you will see that the company describes itself as ‘the world’s premier manufacturer of commercial jetliners for more than 40 years’.

Boeing also proudly explains that:

“…Boeing Defense, Space & Security (BDS) provides end-to-end services for large-scale systems that enhance air-, land-, sea- and space-based platforms for global military, government and commercial customers.  […]  BDS is developing enhanced capabilities through network-enabled solutions, communications and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance technologies. BDS supports the U.S. government as a system integrator on several programs of national significance, including NASA’s International Space Station and, the Missile Defense Agency’s Ground-based Midcourse Defense program. BDS is also expanding into new markets and adjacencies, including unmanned systems, cyber security, energy management, and support and logistics….”

Judging by their own formidable description of their skills, it is less comforting to consider that so far, Boeing has effectively said nothing to the world’s press in connection to Flight MH730. Clearly, it (as a company) must have a considerable amount of data pertaining to this flight.

However, Boeing says that it is now acting as a ‘technical advisor’ to the American National Transportation Safety Board who have a team in Malaysia working with the Malaysian government. Investigators with expertise in air traffic control and radar are providing technical assistance to the Malaysian authorities who are working on locating the missing jetliner.

And the NTSB, who only investigate domestic air accidents, make it clear in their press release dated 12th March 2014:

“…The NTSB plans no further releases of information on the investigation…”

So there you have it. Since it is now an ‘advisor’ for the ‘official’ inquiry carried out by the NTSB, Boeing is now free from being questioned about any issues relating to its own product. Even though the NTSB doesn’t usually work outside the USA. The clue is in the title. They are ‘national’ and not ‘international’.

I’m sure that Malaysian Airlines are relieved to know that the manufacturer of their aircraft which has gone missing is sworn to NTSB secrecy and works closely with US Defense. The NTSB don’t actually have any business working out of their territory but the fact that they appear to have disconnected their phone just after Boeing knocked on their door seems…well…disturbing.

If I bake a pie and you got sick after eating it, would you feel better if I told you that I was closely involved with the local Police and neither they nor I were available to answer your questions?

This “say nothing” corporate approach to missing aircraft by manufacturers does have a precedent in the story of the aircraft manufacturer De Havilland.

MH370 – Hypoxia theory is posted on tumblr

14 Mar

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Courtesy of Tony Noonan and FlightAware, this composite of associated information is worth close consideration.

Making reference to some intriguing and up-to-date evidence that has not yet been generally released, this writer provides an interesting theory as to what may have happened. Please also read the comments added by other viewers because they have a serious bearing on the issues raised by the writer of the article.

http://mh370lost.tumblr.com/

Notice also that, if this theory is correct, this is almost a ‘carbon copy’ of an earlier accident involving a modern day jet airliner. Hypoxia has been a known issue since the 1940s, as mentioned in my earlier post.

MH370 latest: 10 things that have NOT yet happened.

12 Mar

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10) Boeing may be releasing statements but they are not answering questions.

9)  China has not revealed anything it knows about the flight because nobody has had the balls to ask it.

8)  The US Navy has not divulged a single detail despite its huge presence in the area at the time of MH370’s loss.

7)  The Malaysian government have not been asked why they look so damn scared and are clearly playing for time.

6)  The South Vietnamese (see 8) have not mentioned anything except a bloke on an oil rig who might have seen something.

5)  Malaysian Airlines has not really been asked anything at all.

4) US Military has not been pressured to reveal if it has more data, harvested from its sophisticated local Intel. (see 8)

3) China and Russia cannot deduce technological advances in US radar due to silence by US (see 8)

2) Innocent role of US as ‘helper’ means that China, Vietnam and Malaysia dare not put pressure on US for fear of revealing their own ignorance to the US. (see 8)

1) This diplomatic constipation means that nobody has had the honour nor integrity to tell the grieving relatives that there is absolutely no chance that there are any survivors and that the date of their kin’s death was 8th March 2014.

Malaysian Airlines MH370 – dangerous connections?

10 Mar

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The loss of Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 three days ago with 239 people on board is fast becoming a tragedy of ever greater significance as Malaysian official responses flounder in what appears to be a mixture of incompetence and inertia. Despite praise from one US Commander in the area for the Malaysian Forces ability to organise the search areas in detail, both the government and airline are failing under international scrutiny.

The United States, Chinese and Vietnam Navies are applying intensive resources to seeking answers and, combined with other neighbouring countries, have more than forty vessels traversing the estimated crash area. In contrast, very little is being done by the Malaysian authorities to engage either with the mourning relatives – of which there are a great many – or provide more information.

Relatives of the 38 Malaysian passengers who have been waiting in Kuala Lumpur are now being told simply to ‘expect the worst’ – hardly a constructive or compassionate response and days too late to be expressed. Likewise, in Beijing, grieving relatives of the 153 Chinese nationals on the flight are complaining about being unable to find information from officials.

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Malaysian airport security did not check the passports belonging to passengers boarding the flight against the InterPol ‘Lost and Stolen’ computer directory. Both of these passports which were stolen in Thailand and subsequently used by two people to board the flight had been listed there for the last year.

If Malaysian authorities are not checking the movement of suspicious people who pass through their airport hubs, then what exactly are they checking? Until the flight’s black box can be recovered, the suspicion that these two unknown passengers were terrorists remains. But with no terrorist group having so far come forward to claim responsibility, this line of reasoning fades with each passing hour.

But even with what little we know so far, Flight MH370 has more similarities with some previous airliner crashes than are immediately apparent. With the disappearance of the flight being currently so distressing it is not helpful to speculate without reason but below is a very short list of similar tragedies:

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August 1947: BSAA Flight CS59 – Avro Lancastrian

In 2014, global weather patterns are now known to be partly driven by the Jet Stream – a band of super-fast winds that modern jet airliners ‘ride’ to get to their destinations sooner or avoid when going in the opposing direction. Back in 1947, a passenger airliner climbed above the cloud-covered Mount Tupungato on its way to Chile from Argentina. It was never seen again. Conspiracy theories abounded, aided by the mysterious and repeated final Morse signal sent by its navigator – “STENDAC”. Fifty years later, the plane’s wreckage was found in the mountains. It had flown into a snowy peak, causing an avalanche to fall on top of it, covering all wreckage. Not realising that they were flying into the Jet Stream’s strong winds, the crew’s mathematical calculation that they had passed over the mountain did not take into account the fact that, in reality, they were barely moving forward in relation to the ground. Their unforeseeable and tragic demise was unraveled by modern computing and the understanding we now have of the Jet Stream. “STENDAC”? This word puzzle has never been solved but one theory is that the Morse code operator in the Lancastrian was suffering from hypoxia (oxygen starvation – the plane was not pressurised) and believed that he was confirming his DESCENT.

January 1949: BSAA – Avro Tudor MkIVB

The Bermuda Triangle was a bewildering mystery throughout the 1940’s and ’50’s when entire ships and even whole groups of fighter planes disappeared without trace. On a fine day and with an experienced crew and a well serviced plane, this flight from Bermuda to Kingston was effectively an unremarkable and routine flight. The only note of doubt was caused by ten minute blackouts of radio signals that day across the area of sea which was being flown over by the Avro Tudor. Even so, its pilot’s clear messages to gound control were noted and served as confirmation that all was well on board. The plane never arrived at Kingston. Extensive searches found no wreckage. In the 21st century, we now know that the area of sea called the Bermuda Triangle is the location for occasional ferocious and random volcanic eruptions on the sea bed. Gases rise as bubbles to the surface in millions of cubic litres from the under-sea volcanos. If you are a boat or ship on that part of the ocean, you will sink immediately because the water you were floating on is suddenly filled with air bubbles and becomes ‘non-buoyant’. If you are flying above the area in question, the hydrogen and oxygen of the air may be replaced by other gases, either starving your engines or creating massive turbulence. Landing in the sea will give you the same problems as a ship or boat and you will sink without trace.

July 1988: Iran Air Flight 655 – Airbus A300B2

290 Iranians (including 66 children) and 38 souls from other countries had just left Bandar Abbas on a half hour flight to Dubai, having originated at Tehran. The Airbus was transmitting “IFF” signals (International Friend or Foe) and was expected to be where it was and it was flying its agreed route. Eight minutes into its flight, the Commander of the United States guided missile destroyer ‘Vincennes’ (nicknamed ‘Robocop’ by his fellow US Naval officers for his apparent lust for seeking conflict) decided that this particular A300 Airbus was instead an Iranian F-14 Tomcat fighter, trying to attack him. He ordered the firing of two anti-aircraft missiles into it. The passenger jet disintegrated. Although its black box was never found, the Vincennes itself was loaded with all the data necessary to prove beyond doubt what had happened and the United States inquiry uncovered weak leadership, inexperienced crew and ignored warnings of the A300’s true identity to have conspired to create a ‘regrettable accident’. The United States denied guilt but payed millions of dollars in out of court settlements.

December 1988: Pan Am Flight 103 – Boeing 747-121

A few months later, on its way from Frankfurt to Detroit, American Pan Am flight 103 took on more passengers at London and departed for America. With its 259 occupants (189 American, the rest from other nations) settling in as they flew through the darkness above Scotland, a bomb in the luggage hold exploded and the airliner disintegrated. The inquiries and assertions of both British and United States investigators were widely doubted from the start. There were and still are deeply held beliefs of many relatives and political commentators that the tragedy was dishonestly blamed on one man – a Libyan Intelligence Officer put forward by Libyan Colonel Gaddafi as responsible. The man, Abdelbaset al-Megrahi was arrested and jailed in Scotland. In 2003, Libya admitted responsibility but not guilt and settled multi-million dollar compensation claims to the relatives of those who died – in return for political and economic sanctions being lifted. Although this Boeing 747 flew in Pan Am’s colours, it in fact belonged to the United States Civil Reserve inventory of aircraft. One of the earliest Jumbos built, it had been completely overhauled and modified two years earlier to allow it to carry out diverse alternative roles such as freight carriage. The case has so many astonishing and unbelievable  inconsistencies within it that a new inquiry is due to be set up in 2014.

June 2009: Air France Flight 447 – Airbus A330

228 souls passed on when this plane – an Airbus A330 – left just a few pieces of wreckage on the surface of the Atlantic when it crashed. The black box was not recovered until much later on but – almost immediately after the airliner ‘disappeared’ – Airbus confidently announced that blame lay with the crew: human error. How were Airbus so sure? Well, the A330 is the aviation equivelant of your friend who is always on their iPhone. Flight 447 sent a string of messages back to its manufacturers – Airbus – as it flew, alerting them to the fact that things were not going well on the flight.

The plane used ACARS – the Aircraft Communicating and Adressing System – to transmit data over the last three minutes before it crashed. Airbus certainly possessed that information three days after it had crashed.

Does the Malaysian Airlines Boeing  777-200ER use the ACARS system?

Did it send messages to Boeing?

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The amazing future of Asia’s growth needs flight security from today’s West.

Over the next 20 years,  the Asia Pacific area is predicted to account for almost 50% of the world’s growth in air traffic. Both Airbus and Boeing are anticipating delivering nearly 13,000 new airliners to operators in this zone. Airbus is heavily investing in Indonesian refurbishment centres and cabin conversion operations.

This level of investment is truly staggering in its size and implications for mass transit. It also illustrates the shocking contrast in standards between the established manufacturers and operators’ commitment and the seemingly casual incompetence of Malaysian airport security.

Malaysian Airlines operates more than 100 modern jets and flies to over 80 worldwide destinations each day. It has a good safety record.

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