“California, Illinois and 13 other states, along with Amtrak, will share $2 billion in federal grants aimed at developing high-speed rail service, money that had been rejected by Florida, officials announced on Monday,” report Richard Simon and Michael Muskal. At least $300 million is slated for the San Francisco-Los Angeles link.
Surprise! Facebook, Google, Yahoo Fight "Do Not Track" Privacy Measures
Californian legislators are slowly pushing ahead with a Do Not Track law introduced by Senator Alan Lowenthal, which would force Net companies to allow consumers to easily and effectively opt out of personal data being collected online—violators could face civil legal action. Lowenthal has noted that in his opinion legislation “is consistent with California’s long history of championing privacy issues.”
But now Facebook, Google, Yahoo and other companies have written to Lowenthal to state their specific objections. “The measure would negatively affect consumers who have come to expect rich content and free services through the Internet” is one of their counter-arguments, along with an allegation that a no-track law would make the public “more vulnerable to security threats.” Also, forcing the law through would “prove costly to the state” and also “cumbersome for the Attorney General to figure out how to regulate under the bill and to enforce the law.”
Really Google?? A Do Not Track button puts users at risk of security breaches? Yeah that sounds legit. Please, tell us more.
For decades, we have held in contempt those who actively celebrate death.
But in the years since 9/11, we have begun vaguely mimicking those we say we despise, sometimes celebrating bloodshed against those we see as Bad Guys just as vigorously as our enemies celebrate bloodshed against innocent Americans they (wrongly) deem as Bad Guys. Indeed, an America that once carefully refrained from flaunting gruesome pictures of our victims for fear of engaging in ugly death euphoria now ogles pictures of Uday and Qusay’s corpses, rejoices over images of Saddam Hussein’s hanging and throws a party at news that bin Laden was shot in the head.
This is bin Laden’s lamentable victory: He has changed America’s psyche from one that saw violence as a regrettable-if-sometimes-necessary act into one that finds orgasmic euphoria in news of bloodshed. In other words, he’s helped drag us down into his sick nihilism by making us like too many other bellicose societies in history — the ones that aggressively cheer on killing, as long as it is the Bad Guy that is being killed.
“The Killing Of Osama Bin Laden Shows How to Win A Modern PR War.”—
Equally impressive as the military operation to kill Osama Bin Laden is the media strategy that accompanied it, which embraces a post-Twitter world where images can inspire millions to rage — and retaliation.
Amid the stunning news of the surgical American commando operation that killed Osama Bin Laden, one feature looms large in the background: The extraordinarily careful, strategic, and savvy media management of the strike and its aftermath.
Perhaps the most notable feature has been the complete lack of battlefield imagery; instead, all we’ve gotten so far is the powerful, somber announcement from President Obama at the lectern in the East Room, and old file images of Bin Laden. (We’ve also gotten a blurry image of the Bin Laden compound, perhaps taken after the fact, and some ridiculous faked imagery.) Images from the scene outside Islamabad may yet emerge, but for now, the lack of them reads as a savvy, precisely calibrated decision.