Miners Not Minors

Another Sunday and another day to just kick back and enjoy the people around me….unless the world ends I will not be posting anything like the stuff I do during the week….take some time off and enjoy life…..and argue with my daughter and granddaughter…..cannot think of a better way to spend my day……

I have heard the next “Last Frontier” will be space and especially the minerals and stuff that is found there…..the first out there will make a fortune and become the stuff of SciFi novels and movies……(think the “Expanse”)…….

News this past week makes the idea of space mining just a little more like reality….

A prospective asteroid mining company has taken a major step towards beginning operations in the next 10 years. Deep Space Industries (DSI) has announced plans to launch a demonstration spacecraft to test some of the technologies that will be needed to find and utilize asteroid material.

Now, asteroid mining is probably something that still feels like it’s far off in the future at the moment. But last week, DSI said that it will partner with Luxembourg (via their Space Resources initiative) to develop the various technologies needed to start asteroid mining. The first result of this partnership is a spacecraft called Prospector-X, which is a small vehicle that will be launched into low Earth orbit within a year.

Source: Asteroid Mining Just Moved A Step Closer To Being A Reality | IFLScience

If successful we just need to sit back and see who does what and why….will it be for the good of the planet or just another exercise in greed?

Any ideas?

You Are Your Credit Score

The day after the first day of the year and all is well…..at least at my house….but then I cannot say the same elsewhere…..

First I have to ask……..who’s idea was it to name a snowstorm?  Seriously…..who?  It already has a name…..WINTER!

From time to time I try to keep my reader up on stuff …..so this is just an IST FYI post……

Let’s talk about something that is extremely vital to your daily life…..your credit score.  You can do very little without some person checking your score out…..and Americans are flocking to sites that give you a “free” credit score so they can keep track of the position……you know the sites….the ones that do  not need a credit card for your to check your score….that is good right?

Not to me….they do need your SSN….the number that controls your life and you willingly give it to some company for your credit score…….are you people high?

There is something that maybe you need to consider before you willy nilly give a power over you to some faceless company……

Freeze your credit reports before you get burned. That’s the message from security experts, consumer advocates, and some state attorneys general. They say more people should consider a credit freeze as a way to block identity thieves from opening new credit cards and other accounts in your name. They recommend a freeze even if your identity hasn’t been stolen. “It’s much better to shut the door before it even takes place,” says Mike Litt, a consumer program advocate at the nonprofit US Public Interest Research Group. “You can save yourself so much time and headache.” This is different from a credit monitoring service, which you have to pay a monthly fee for and which alerts you if a new account is opened or other suspicious activity takes place. A credit freeze is the only way to stop criminals from opening new accounts in your name.

But there are some downsides to a credit freeze to consider. It also blocks you from opening new lines of credit, so if you plan to take out a mortgage or an auto loan or apply for a new credit card you’ll need to remember to unfreeze it each time. And residents of some states have to pay a fee for a freeze. Freezing is a must if an account has been opened in your name or if you’ve been notified that your Social Security number was taken in a data breach. But even if identity theft hasn’t struck, you still should seriously consider it, since data breaches have become so common. Freezing won’t hurt your credit score. But you will still need to check your statements every month, because it won’t stop thieves from using your existing credit or debit cards to make fraudulent charges. Click for more, including how to freeze and unfreeze your credit reports.

Identity theft is a growing problem…..and yet people are willing to give up their most important piece of data…..why so stupid?

Personally, I trust NO ONE with my SSN….for that matter I do not trust many people in the first place……but I damn sure will not give some company the power of my life.

You do what you want…..me I can wait on my credit score…..because I do not give a crap what it is in the first place…..

Hate As A Pyramid Scheme

You know hate can be pretty darn lucrative…..hate sells and when it sells it becomes really profitable….I remember the pyramid schemes from years past…you know the ones where you join and work your way up to manager, supervisor or regional director….with each step you would get money from each person you had in your plan……

The reason I bring this up is that the old stand-by for racists and bigots alike….the KKK, the Klan, you know those guys in white sheets and face covers……someone did a bit of historical perspective on the workings of the Klan back in the 1920’s……

Even during its 1920s heyday, the Ku Klux Klan wasn’t a very effective hate group, according to an analysis by Harvard economist Roland G. Fryer and Steven D. Levitt, the latter of Freakonomics fame. However, the Klan was a “wildly successful” pyramid scheme, according to a Priceonomics blog post that rehashes the pair’s 2011 study of the group. In the piece, Rosie Cima writes that KKK leaders “exploited pre-existing, popular racism to make money.” For example, during a time when most in the US made less than $700 annually, the KKK leader in Indiana made some $200,000. He and other leaders managed it through clever marketing and the invention of all kinds of ways to make money off their own members—a classic trait of a pyramid scheme. For instance, the Klan charged members a $10 initiation fee, and Fryer and Levitt provide the breakdown:

  • $4 to the salesman (called a “Kleagle”) who recruited a member
  • $2.50 to the PR firm the Klan had hired to boost membership (it boomed)
  • $2 to the Klan’s self-declared “grand wizard,” William Simmons
  • $1.50 to a regional supervisor (the “Grand Goblin”).

The result, Cima notes, “looked much like a modern multi-level marketing company—with extremely stupid titles.” And it didn’t stop with initiation fees: the Klan leaned on members to buy robes (and robe cleaning), along with Klan-branded life insurance, accessories, bibles, and even candy. The Klan petered out as a genuine national force in the 1940s (the feds got them for back taxes). But small KKK groups are still out there, and, according to Vice, some are using candy as a recruiting tool rather than as a moneymaker. Residents of Cullman City, Arkansas, recently received KKK fliers packaged with Tootsie Rolls and lollipops. Authorities there are investigating the not-so-original scheme.

Like I said…..hate can be very profitable……god bless capitalism…..

What Happened To The Community Bank?

About 5 years ago there were several locally owned community banks in my area…..and slowly they have been systematically eating up by larger more national banks…..

I got to thinking about the demise of community banks and went on a research mission….to see if I could find a reason for the demise of these institutions.

After several days…I found what appears to be a good explanation for this mass extinction……

As a rewsponse to the economic crisis of 2008 the government came up with a plan….Dodd-Frank…..it was at best minor reform…..nothing has really changed but it did allow for the demise of the community bank……say what?

The Dodd-Frank regulations are so lethal to community banks that some say the intent was to force them to sell out to the megabanks.

Source: Killing Off Community Banks – Intended Consequence of Dodd-Frank?

This ends my posting day…will return tomorrow with more stuff…..peace out

Are You Ready For Some Football?

I know it is Sunday and all eyes will be on the TV screen…… I do not post much that is too complicated….but I found this and since today is  a day of football…..I thought some might find this piece a bit interesting….and possibly a little frightening….or at the very least disturbing.

Are you a sports fan?  Cool!

How about football?  Me?  I am not a fan, yes I watch a game or two but it is not all consuming…..to me I think football is a diversion that the media wants people to fixate on so that real news will not be that important to them.

I mean look at your news…..always reports on this team, that player or that scandal…..none of which plays a very big part of the grand scheme of the universe…..sports is a way to control the news and in doing so to control people’s responses.

I mean what does Brady’s balls have to do with the grand scheme of the world?

Now let’s move on shall we?  Remember when you went batcrap crazy over the NSA and its collection of your personal data?

This article reports on many aspects of the game….from the ball to players to spectators……how long before the government or corporations use this data in one fashion or another……

Source: How the NFL—not the NSA—is impacting data gathering well beyond the gridiron | Ars Technica

While you spend all your spare time working on your fantasy team….the government and business will be spending all their time using your data against you……

Still a sports fan?

Does Your Internet Suck?

The weekend and I usually post on something different from my normal postings…..today I want to talk about the internet service.

We all have had problems with our service and/or our providers, right?  For me it is a slow service at times usually in the early morning hours or a loss of service at critical times in my postings…….usually it comes with me ranting and swearing profusely…..and my blood pressure going through the roof…..after I calm down I try to look at it rationally which usually makes the blood pressure rise again…….

But what could be causing the problems that I and many others have to deal with….regularly?  There may be a good answer to that question……

Thanks to new FCC rules put out this year to ensure net neutrality and keep all online data equal, major Internet service providers (think Verizon, AT&T, Time Warner) aren’t supposed to hold our Internet speeds hostage. But that’s exactly what’s happening, per a study by an Internet activist group, causing a hefty slowdown to 75% of wireline businesses and residences, the Guardian reports. Battle for the Net’s study, which checked out results from 300,000 Internet users, found what the paper calls “significant degradations” on the networks of the five largest ISPs, which means we’re paying for traffic speed we’re just not getting. “There is widespread and systemic abuse across the network,” says a rep from one of the groups that comprises Battle for the Net.

The ISPs are already being forced to react to these net neutrality rules: AT&T was hit with a $100 million fine last week for slowing down Internet speeds of customers with supposedly unlimited data plans, per the Washington Post, while Sprint cut out its “data-throttling” procedure of slowing down speeds of customers also believed to be using an excessive amount of data, CNET notes. But the ISPs don’t think they should be regulated as public utilities are, which is effectively what the FCC decided back in February, and AT&T in particular is fighting back against the “unprecedented” and “unjustified” rules it says is damaging its business, CBS Washington reports. (“Radical” changes are needed to fix our antiquated Internet, a Gizmodo writer says.)

CRAP!  There goes my pressure again!