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Thu, 16 Sep 2021
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Will insurance companies use smart appliances to monitor "unhealthy" habits?

Since 2008 Old-Thinker News has been covering the rapidly advancing Internet of Things (IoT). According to CIA chief David Patraeus the IoT will have a monumental impact on "clandestine tradecraft."


Consumer appliances are now becoming activated and "smart." RFID chips and wireless internet connections enable devices like televisions, refrigerators, printers, and computers to communicate with each other and generally make life easier for us. This comes at a price, however. Your privacy is eliminated.

A detailed multi-dimensional image of our daily lives will be built with this system. Individuals to entire group dynamics will be tracked. It will be unparalleled in history. Everything from daily travel routes to eating habits will be traceable. Every day objects will be transmitting data 24/7.

Piggy Bank

Nearly half of US public school children are poor

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Nearly half of public school children in the United States were poor in the school year that ended in 2011, according to a new study by the Southern Education Foundation (SEF), the oldest US educational charity. In 17 states in the South and four in the West, children from low-income families comprised a majority in public schools

The SEF study, based on data collected by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), further found that the percentage of low-income students in public schools rose dramatically from 2001 to 2011, far outpacing public school funding. The study also found a direct correlation between levels of poverty and academic performance.

The findings are the latest exposure of the growth of poverty in the US alongside burgeoning social inequality.

The SEF study defines poor students as those qualifying for either free or reduced-price lunches in preschool through 12th grade (P-12). According to Department of Agriculture Guidelines, a student from a household with an income below 130 percent of the Federal Poverty Guidelines (FPG) - about $29,000 for a family of four - qualified for free lunches. Children from four-person households with incomes below 185 percent FPG (about $41,000) qualified for reduced-price lunches.

Comment: As income inequality rises and more people fall into poverty, children bear the brunt of this and the cycle of poverty continues. The heartless psycopaths in power have the wealth and ability to change things, but prefer to have a docile underclass willing to do their bidding just to survive.
Fear, stress among the poor hinder learning
Poverty Goes Straight to the Brain
How Can the World's Richest Country Let Children Go Hungry? 6 Tricks Corporate Elites Use to Hoard All the Wealth
$240 billion amassed by 100 richest people enough to end extreme poverty four times over: Oxfam


Stormtrooper

Taiwanese soldiers wearing ballistic masks look like 'the cavalry from hell'

Taiwanese Soldier_1
© DDN Japan
Ballistic masks are worn by soldiers to prevent shots to the head.
Images of Taiwanese soldiers decked out in black body armour and ballistic masks have gone viral thanks to exposure on Japanese news sites, where viewers compared the look of the officers to something out of a video game or comic book.

The photographs, originally part of a series taken during a 2011 ceremonial parade in Taipei, depict Taiwan's Armed Forces, including both male and female special operations soldiers and military frogmen.

All of the soldiers in the photos wield heavy weaponry including assault rifles, bulletproof shields and submachine guns, but the images that especially captivated netizens were those that showed the elite forces wearing ballistic face masks.

People 2

Why have young people in Japan stopped having sex?

What happens to a country when its young people stop having sex? Japan is finding out...

japan sex
© Eric Rechsteiner
Arm’s length: 45% of Japanese women aged 16-24 are ‘not interested in or despise sexual contact’. More than a quarter of men feel the same way.
Ai Aoyama is a sex and relationship counsellor who works out of her narrow three-storey home on a Tokyo back street. Her first name means "love" in Japanese, and is a keepsake from her earlier days as a professional dominatrix. Back then, about 15 years ago, she was Queen Ai, or Queen Love, and she did "all the usual things" like tying people up and dripping hot wax on their nipples. Her work today, she says, is far more challenging. Aoyama, 52, is trying to cure what Japan's media calls sekkusu shinai shokogun, or "celibacy syndrome".

Japan's under-40s appear to be losing interest in conventional relationships. Millions aren't even dating, and increasing numbers can't be bothered with sex. For their government, "celibacy syndrome" is part of a looming national catastrophe. Japan already has one of the world's lowest birth rates. Its population of 126 million, which has been shrinking for the past decade, is projected to plunge a further one-third by 2060. Aoyama believes the country is experiencing "a flight from human intimacy" - and it's partly the government's fault.

Health

Hospitals face whole new world under health law

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© John Partipilo, The Tennessean
Dr. Todd Arkava treats Charles Robert Connor for a dislocated shoulder in the emergency room at TriStar Skyline Medical Center.
One thing about the Affordable Care Act is clear: Hospitals will exist in a world where they are rewarded more for the quality of care than for the volume of patients they treat.

A grisly headshot of Walter White, the anti-hero of "Breaking Bad," glares from two computer monitors on the desk of Mike Schatzlein, the CEO of Saint Thomas Health, one of Nashville's major health care systems. The TV character's meth-cooking ways don't exactly line up with Saint Thomas' mission of faith-based care, Schatzlein joked, but he still loves a good show.

Schatzlein took the helm at Saint Thomas three years ago, just in time to pilot the system through some drama of its own - namely, the Affordable Care Act and federal health reform.

Today, hospitals across the country must transform to survive.

Star of David

Israel's New Racism: The Persecution of African Migrants in the Holy Land


Comment: This video offers a shocking evidence that the modern 'state of Israel' is based on hatred and xenophobia. Any group of people that falsely defines themselves as 'chosen' by a false god, establishes a 'nation' on the stolen land of others and proceeds to commit slow genocide against the indigenous population will ultimately end up hating all 'others', just like modern day Israelis.



Max Blumenthal explained how The New York Times commissioned the 11-minute video, but after the paper's editors saw it, refused to publish it:

I was asked to submit something by The New York Times op docs, a new section on the website that published short video documentaries. I am known for short video documentaries about the right wing in the US, and extremism in Israel. They solicited a video from me, and when I didn't produce it in time, they called me for it, saying they wanted it. So I sent them a video I produced with my colleague, David Sheen, an Israeli journalist who is covering the situation of non-Jewish Africans in Israel more extensively than any journalist in the world.

We put together some shocking footage of pogroms against African communities in Tel Aviv, and interviews with human rights activists. I thought it was a well-done documentary about a situation very few Americans were familiar with. We included analysis. We tailored it to their style, and of course it was rejected without an explanation after being solicited. I sent it to some other major websites and they have not even responded to me, when they had often solicited articles from me in the past.

Blumenthal, author of the bestselling and widely promoted 2009 book Republican Gomorrah, also spoke about the difficulty he has had getting any mainstream media attention for his new book Goliath: Life and Loathing in Greater Israel.

Just like this video, Blumenthal's new book offers an unflinching look at the racist reality of Israel that America's establishment media simply does not have the guts to confront.

Bizarro Earth

Titanic violin sells for $1.4 million at auction

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The violin famously played by the Titanic's bandmaster as the ship sank on its maiden voyage in 1912 sold for £900,000 ($1,454,400) at auction on Saturday.

This breaks the previous world record price for a single Titanic-related item set at $340,000. According to the auction house staff, the winning bid went to a British buyer based in the UK. It had been set to be auctioned for an estimated £300,000 ($485,796).

U.K. auction house Henry Aldridge and Son has spent over six years and many thousands of pounds researching and investigating the instrument's authenticity. Police forensic evidence, audio archive material, Oxford University research and a CT scan have all been used to prove it is the real deal.

Dollars

Why the French may say 'non' to 'Made in France'

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© AFP/Getty Images
Thomas Coex
The French government is lobbying its citizens to opt for domestic products over imports, but a new report said that doing so could leave French consumers 300 euros ($398) a month poorer.

According to a report by French thinktank CEPII, which specializes in international economic research, choosing "Made in France" products over imported equivalents could lose French households between 1,270 euros ($1,685) and 3,770 euros ($5,010) each year.

The report came after Arnaud Montebourg, the government minister for Industrial Renewal, launched a "Made in France" campaign last year,dressed in a quintessentially French Breton top and clutching a French-branded blender.

Stock Down

Japan's population falls by record level

japan population
Japan's population fell by a record 0.22 percent to 127.515 million as of last Oct. 1, while people aged 65 or older surpassed the 30 million mark for the first time, the government said Tuesday.

The figures are from a survey by the Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry.

The decline of 284,000 in the total population, which also included foreign nationals, was the largest of its kind since officials began compiling comparable data in 1950.

It was also the second year in a row that the population has fallen.

Megaphone

Fear and frustration engulf Maryville

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© The Kansan City Star/David Eulitt
Nodaway County Courthouse in downtown Maryville
Tiona McKinney knew that something had changed in her sleepy college town when she woke last week to the sound of screaming.

"That was right outside my window," said McKinney, 20, a Northwest Missouri State University senior from St. Louis.

A fiery diatribe was coming from her adult neighbor. The woman was ranting in a loud and angry voice, midmorning, across the lawn to no one in sight about the disturbing details of the alleged sexual assault of Daisy Coleman and the investigation that followed.

In this close-knit town of 12,000 some 90 minutes north of Kansas City, there were few who weren't already painfully aware of the murky particulars of a case that had divided the city.

Comment: In America's psychopathic culture, where what is morally and humanely understood as reality is turned around by the psycho rulers into an inhumane caricature posed as the "law", we will find ourselves confused, fearful and divided within and without. But if we do away with the rules of this psycho-justice system, and just stare the facts in the face, our inner division will lift and we might be able to see finally the only division that actually exists in this world: between humans and conscienceless human looking predators.

So look at the facts. Look at the fact that it was a miracle that Daisy Coleman is alive today, left outside in subzero temperatures, after being poisoned and raped that night. Her rapist and his associates left her in conditions that have easily caused her death. And they don't seem to care a bit about this, or those who support them with "fancy psycho law" talk. And they are out there free, knowing they can do whatever they want because they can get away with it.