As the People's Republic of KKKalifornia continues its progressive deindustrialization, the local Public Utilities Commission has decided to allow electric utilities to implement mass blackouts during period of high fire risk in order to insulate themselves from liability should a fire break out (archived). As much of this People's Republic is a precariously irrigated desert, this means locales including San Francisco, San Jose, and the "ritzy" suburbs of Los Angeles are all candidates for preventative power outages, depending how the wind blows.
Certain special classes of utility determined by the composition of their ownership had been granted this authority as early as 2007. Calistoga in the Napa Valley enjoyed a prophylactic service outage last year that was surely sold as entirely for the people's own protection.
More than 50,000 machines running Microsoft SQL server have been captured through a piece of malware calling itself Nanshou (archived). The captured machines have pressed into service of their new masters and made to slave away in the altcoin mines. Microsoft SQL server software listening on a port open to the attacker provides all the opening Nanshou needs to capture root on affected boxes.
Protonmail, notable for featuring "privacy" in its marketing and being a being a "private" email service commonly recommended outside the republic, is facing serious allegations of cooperating with criminal organizations styling themselves as "law enforcement" in various fiat jurisdictions (archived). A spokesperson has tried to mitigate the criticism by suggesting the don't "voluntarily" cooperate and are "obliged" to cooperate with criminal demands.
Such derpy weaseling ignores the example of Ladar Levison, who when faced with criminal FBI demands supported by the local courts circus against his Lavabit email service did the right thing. Rather than break the contract he was marketing to customers, Levison shuttered Lavabit when the forces of evil made continuing under the conditions he marketed to customers impossible.
Several packages in transit from a vendor in Japan to Huawei in China have been routed through the US state of Tennessee despite the substantial milage involved in the detour (archived). This malicious misrouting raises serious concerns of organized industrial espionage in light of FedEx's history of extra-legal collaboration with USG organs.
Meanwhile the US based "Professional" organization has depersoned its Huawei affiliated members. Employees of Huawei and academics affiliated with Huawei are being barred from participating in peer review, editing of the organization's journals, and anything else that involves access to papers before their publication (archived). This is merely yet another demonstration of the way USG affiliated "international" organs aren't in fact very international at all.
Looming over the entire situation is that outside of the market for infrastructure gear where the USG is making noise about Huawei's increasing dominance over Cisco spyware, Huawei and fellow Chinese giant Xiaomi are increasingly eclipsing US based Apple and Lower Korea based Samsung in the high (archived) and low end (archived) of the consumer device market. This development critically endangers the position of USG affiliated firms to draw rent seeking income from owning a brand they apply to devices manufactured for them in east Asia while Chinese firms strengthen the brand they apply to devices they manufacture themselves. Sorry for your loss.
The Serbian military has gone to "combat alert" after US/UN backed Kosovo forces operating in police uniforms carried out raids against ethnic Serbs in a majority Serb border region (archived). twenty-three prisoners were taken and two UN staff members were wounded while attempting to "peacekeep" during the raid (archived). The NATO occupation force KFOR, which allows Kosovo to have a border, issued a statement calling for "calm" as they "investigate" what appears to be statally organized ethnic violence carried out by Albanians against Serbs with the aggressors gifted protection by NATO.
As the US amps up its efforts to squeeze Chinese tech giant Huawei out of existence, China has begun countering with its own moves. The Chinese People's Liberation Army is dumping its Microsoft Windows licenses out of "hacking" fears (archived). With Anglophone firms breaking contracts and refusing to sell to Chinese firms, any last incentive of the Chinese side to continue paying is gone.
In a serious flashing of teeth, the Chinese are considering an export ban on rare earth metals to the United States (archived). Such a move would very well fuck US industries including the graftastic "alternative" power racket and force the US and their Australian collaborators to rapidly scale up their own rare earth mining and processing and make do with less. A stronger, not immediately likely though not unimaginable ban on the export of finished goods with rare earth components would of course mean the end of "consumer tech" in the United States.
EU Parliament election results showed an emptying of the political "center" in favor of more polarized options. Conservative leaning voters went nationalist while left leaning voters moved from traditional Pantsuit parties to Green doomsday cult parties. In Britain, the 4 month old Brexit Party thrashed the competition in an election Britain should have already Brexited itself out of.
The EU parliament's primary function is issuing non-binding statements and rubberstamping socialisms that emerge from the EU's bureaucracies. In that light, the likelihood of this parliament doing anything other than showing how irreconcilably divided Europe is appears to be low.
Seventy two young persons were captured by police during a mass arrest event in Edgar County, Illinois (population 18,576, archived). The Edgar County Sheriff's department arrived to a party outside Vermillion, Illinois (population 225) under the pretext of checking out an unusual amount of cars parked along the road. The captured young people were bussed to the Edgar County Jail in Paris, Illinois (population 8,837) where criminal charges for partying while young were issued against them.
Perceptics, the sole provider of fixed location license plate scanners for US land border crossings has seen a number of blueprints and other files related to their scanners leaked online (archived).
The USG has unleashed a new round of charges against Julian Assage for violations of the US espionage act while Sweden has formally submitted their own extradition request. Ever since the US case against Assange started moving forward, Obama pardonee Chelsea/Bradley Manning has been in and out of jail for contempt of court for refusing to snitch to grand juries and aid the production of new charges against Assange.
The new charges and the continued issuing of charges should injure the USG's chances of winning the extradition game against Sweden ,as the possibility of an espionage act charges carrying a potential death penalty such as "intefering in a military operation" are arguably in play, should Assange have competent counsel and not a Joshua Dratel. Of course since the UK uses a common law system where precendent can be cherry picked and rewritten, the US may still manage to land Assange in spite of the UK's Extradition Act prohibitions.
The full text of the USG's latest dump is below: Continue reading