Amazon’s Disturbing Plan to Add Face Surveillance to Your Front Door

Recently, a patent application from Amazon became public that would pair face surveillance — like Rekognition, the product that the company is aggressively marketing to police and Immigration and Customs Enforcement — with Ring, a doorbell camera company that Amazon bought earlier this year.

While the details are sketchy, the application describes a system that the police can use to match the faces of people walking by a doorbell camera with a photo database of persons they deem “suspicious.” Continue reading

Congress Is Trying to Use the Spending Bill to Criminalize Boycotts of Israel and Other Countries

Congressional leaders from both sides of the aisle are planning to sneak a bill criminalizing politically motivated boycotts of Israel into the end-of-the-year omnibus spending bill. The bill would make it a crime to participate in political boycotts protected by the First Amendment. The bill’s sponsors are attempting to avoid public scrutiny by including the bill’s unconstitutional criminal penalties in must-pass legislation scheduled for a vote just days before Congress’ holiday recess. Continue reading

Don’t Let the Trump Administration Corporatize Medicare

The Trump administration is engaged in a massive deception about Medicare Advantage plans, those commercial insurance plans that contract with the government to offer Medicare benefits. Buyers, beware. The Trump administration, much like the Medicare Advantage corporations themselves, is pushing these commercial plans on people without mentioning their risks and costs. But, they can’t be honest about Medicare Advantage. If they were, they would have to admit that these plans—like commercial health insurance in general—typically come up short on key metrics such as affordability, access, choice, efficiency, and accountability. Continue reading

Putting the Trump Stamp on the Public

Now that Trump is in the White House, he wants to bring the family’s sensibility for branding to our local POs. The Trumpsters say it’s time to turn this historic public service over to the magic of the free market profit motive and the efficiency of bottom-line corporate management. You know, like airlines and cable companies. Continue reading

The Ignored Legacy of George H.W. Bush: War Crimes, Racism, and Obstruction of Justice

The 41st president of the United States was not the last Republican moderate or a throwback to an imagined age of conservative decency and civility; he engaged in race baiting, obstruction of justice, and war crimes. He had much more in common with the two Republican presidents who came after him than his current crop of fans would like us to believe. Continue reading