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“Reconcile Yourselves With Your God, For All Will Perish In The Tempest”

From The Onion:

“The furious hoarfrost bearing down upon us knows neither mercy nor reason, and all within the five boroughs will perish, cowering in their brittle dwellings,” said de Blasio, adding that none would find succor from the gale save those favored by providence to pass quietly in their sleep.

Obviously overblown rhetoric from de Blasio. We’re all going to be fine as long as we have milk and bread.

You do have milk and bread, right?

Entertainment Linkin' Log News Politics

The Elf on the Shelf is a Real Bastard, You Guys

The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives believes the Elf on the Shelf is an excellent way to get your kids ready for the “1984”-esque surveillance state we’re heading toward:

What is troubling is what The Elf on the Shelf represents and normalizes: anecdotal evidence reveals that children perform an identity that is not only for caretakers, but for an external authority (The Elf on the Shelf), similar to the dynamic between citizen and authority in the context of the surveillance state. Further to this, The Elf on the Shelf website offers teacher resources, integrating into both home and school not only the brand but also tacit acceptance of being monitored and always being on one’s best behaviour–without question.

The Elf on the Shelf is a Real Bastard
“If you don’t have anything to hide, you don’t have anything to worry about, kids! Teehee!”
Entertainment News

And The Winner Isn’t…

Transformers: Best Picture (LOL)

“Transformers: Age of Extinction” wasn’t bad, but Best Picture? HAHAHAHAHAHAH No.

via io9

Linkin' Log News Society

W. Kamau Bell On Being a Black Male, Six Feet Four Inches Tall, in America in 2014

From Vanity Fair:

I am afraid of the cops. Absolutely petrified of the cops. Now understand, I’ve never been arrested or held for questioning. I’ve never been told that I “fit the description.” But that doesn’t change a thing. I am afraid of cops the way that spiders are afraid of boots. You’re walking along, minding your own business, and SQUISH! You are dead.

Simply put, I am afraid of the cops because I am black. To raise the stakes even further, I am male. And to go all in on this pot of fear, I am six foot four, and weigh 250 pounds. Michael Brown, the unarmed Missouri 18-year-old shot dead by police this summer, was also six foot four. Depending on your perspective, I could be described as a “gentle giant,” the way that teachers described Brown. Or I could be described as a “demon,” the way that Officer Darren Wilson described Michael Brown in his grand-jury testimony.

It’s informative and infuriating. That this is a thing that anyone should have to deal with pisses me off to no end.

News Politics Technology

Well, That’s Confusing

I… I don’t think that’s the video that’s supposed to be there.

Linkin' Log News Society

Respect My Authoritah!

From The Washington Post:

Even though it might sound harsh and impolitic, here is the bottom line: if you don’t want to get shot, tased, pepper-sprayed, struck with a baton or thrown to the ground, just do what I tell you. Don’t argue with me, don’t call me names, don’t tell me that I can’t stop you, don’t say I’m a racist pig, don’t threaten that you’ll sue me and take away my badge. Don’t scream at me that you pay my salary, and don’t even think of aggressively walking towards me. Most field stops are complete in minutes. How difficult is it to cooperate for that long?

“I’m a cop. If you don’t want to get hurt, don’t challenge me.” is an op-ed that was penned by Sunil Dutta, a professor of homeland security at Colorado Tech University and a 17-year veteran of the LAPD. The whole article is like that, and basically boils down to “respect my authority and you won’t get hurt”.

I think it’s pretty safe to say that when you’re taking your cues from Cartman on “South Park”, you may want to re-think your position.

Update: Dammit, apparently Daring Fireball made that connection last night. This is what happens when I start posting things before I catch up on my RSS feeds from the night before.

Linkin' Log News

John Oliver on Ferguson

My frustration with everything going on in Ferguson is fairly hard to verbalize. Thankfully, John Oliver takes care of 90% of it for me in this segment from “Last Week Tonight”.

Linkin' Log News

Girl Scout Cookies and The Green Cross

A Girl Scout was selling their delicious, magical cookies in front of a cannabis clinic in San Francisco. From Mashable:

Any patients at The Green Cross with the munchies didn’t stand a chance. In two hours on President’s Day, Danielle sold 117 boxes outside the clinic — people gobbled up all her Dulce de Leches and blazed through the Tagalongs. According to her mother, Carol, that’s 37 more boxes than what she sold during the same two-hour period outside a small Safeway the next day.

Well played, kid. Very well played indeed.

Linkin' Log News

A Warm-n-Fuzzy Update on Target’s Data Breach

Target announced today that the 40 million customers who have had their credit and debit card data swiped from Target’s servers aren’t the only people who have something to worry about. From Target’s corporate site:

As part of Target’s ongoing forensic investigation, it has been determined that certain guest information—separate from the payment card data previously disclosed—was taken from Target. This theft is not a new breach, but was uncovered as part of the ongoing investigation. At this time, the investigation has determined that the stolen information includes names, mailing addresses, phone numbers or email addresses for up to 70 million individuals.

Remember that time I said that this whole situation didn’t make me believe that Target was capable of protecting its customer’s information in the slightest? Well, this doesn’t help in the slightest. And while Target will be offering a year of credit monitoring and identity theft protection for its customers after this mess, the fact that it has been a month after the original announcement and these services still haven’t gone live brings my confidence level in Target to an all-time low. So that’s fun.

News Technology

Joyous Holiday Season Shipping: Ho, Ho, Oh Crap

One of the fun stories coming out of the Joyous Holiday Season was the number of packages that were guaranteed to be delivered by Christmas that, you know, weren’t. From The Wall Street Journal:

The bottleneck was largely in UPS’s air business, which retailers leaned on heavily in the past week as they scrambled to fill down-to-the-wire orders. UPS has a bigger share of retail e-commerce business than FedEx Corp., but its smaller fleet of cargo planes might have been a limiting factor, people in the industry said. UPS said it had added 23 extra chartered aircraft to its year-round operating fleet of more than 237 planes and regular 293 daily charters. FedEx owned 581 and leased 66 as of May 31.

This has lead to a number of online retailers, including Amazon, having to issue gift cards and credits to disappointed customers. Amazon, of course, is not pleased about this, and issued the following statement to The Denver Post:

“Amazon fulfillment centers processed and tendered customer orders to delivery carriers on time for holiday delivery,” said Amazon spokeswoman Mary Osako. “We are reviewing the performance of the delivery carriers.”

If I were UPS and FedEx, I’d be freaking out right now… As MG Siegler points out, it is unlikely that Amazon could outright buy either company. But until Amazon has their fleet of delivery drones swarming the sky, dropping our packages from the air, there is an interesting possibility available to them: extending their already-existing partnership with the United States Postal Service that was announced last month. From USA Today: unveiled a new partnership with the U.S. Postal Service to deliver online orders from the world’s largest Internet retailer on Sunday for the first time.

The service started this weekend in the Los Angeles and New York metropolitan areas and Amazon plans to expand it to a large portion of the U.S. population in 2014, including Dallas, Houston, New Orleans and Phoenix.

The revenue generated by taking on the shipping needs of someone like Amazon, who ships a bazillion packages a day, could help stave off the USPS’s potential bankruptcy, and create a pants-crappingly bad situation for the companies who had been eating the USPS’s lunch for the past few years.