(image by CNN)
People all over the world gathered today to remember Nelson Mandela. The coverage of his funeral dominated every TV channel ... except one. Three guesses -- and the first two don't count.
Yes, Truthseekers, while the world mourned and remembered, the perpetually perky bubble heads on Fox "News'" "Fox and Friends" (still sounds like a children's book title) were chatting about gun control legislation and fast food workers on strike (the lazy bastards ...). Yes, they made mention of the service, but there was scant coverage of one of the most significant events of the year for one of the most important figures of the century. Typical.
Speaking of plastic guns, Congress actually voted on something that didn't involve Obamacare! Must have seemed odd to them. They did vote to extend the ban on plastic weapons, but that's where the line was drawn in the gunpowder. In the year since the Newtown tragedy (another event Fox "News" managed to forget), this is the first -- and only -- limit on weapons that Congress has approved.
"Sen. Christopher Murphy (D-Conn.), a leading advocate of new, stricter gun laws, said 'We should be embarrassed' that Congress has otherwise failed to stem the flow of assault weapons since the Sandy Hook shooting, the Washington Post reports. But the plastic-guns ban prompted rare agreement among Democrats and Republicans in part because the National Rifle Association, which mounted a strong campaign against a series of gun control proposals in the spring, remained silent on the issue of extending the ban on plastic guns."
Easy for the Neocons to vote yes if the NRA sits in tacit approval. They know who butters their bread.
And did you know that the NSA is monitoring your video gaming activities? Guess they're concerned that you might secretly plot to overthrow the government by cultivating your own crop of Orchs. The Guardian reports that another document release by Edward Snowden has revealed the NSA has constructed mass data collection capabilities inside the Xbox Live console network. This is a gaming system that has over 48 million players world wide. The Guardian reports:
"The California-based producer of World of Warcraft said neither the NSA nor GCHQ had sought its permission to gather intelligence inside the game. 'We are unaware of any surveillance taking place,' said a spokesman for Blizzard Entertainment. 'If it was, it would have been done without our knowledge or permission.' Microsoft declined to comment on the latest revelations, as did Philip Rosedale, the founder of Second Life and former CEO of Linden Lab, the game's operator. The company's executives did not respond to requests for comment.The NSA declined to comment on the surveillance of games. A spokesman for GCHQ said the agency did not 'confirm or deny' the revelations but added: 'All GCHQ's work is carried out in accordance with a strict legal and policy framework which ensures that its activities are authorised, necessary and proportionate, and there is rigorous oversight, including from the secretary of state, the interception and intelligence services commissioners and the intelligence and security committee.'
"The NSA document, written in 2008 and titled Exploiting Terrorist Use of Games & Virtual Environments, stressed the risk of leaving games communities under-monitored, describing them as a 'target-rich communications network' where intelligence targets could 'hide in plain sight.' Games, the analyst wrote, 'are an opportunity!' According to the briefing notes, so many different US intelligence agents were conducting operations inside games that a 'deconfliction' group was required to ensure they weren't spying on, or interfering with, each other. If properly exploited, games could produce vast amounts of intelligence, according to the NSA document. They could be used as a window for hacking attacks, to build pictures of people's social networks through ' buddylists and interaction,' to make approaches by undercover agents, and to obtain target identifiers (such as profile photos), geolocation, and collection of communications."
They can also be used to defend Middle Earth from the forces of evil, but -- oh -- never mind ...