Social media, confirmation bias and its use in marketing #FakeNews #Propaganda #SocialMedia

(I originally posted this on May 24, 2014, about 2 1/2 years before “fake news” became a popular meme. Since then, social media has become a friction-less platform for the spread of propaganda, fake news, and worse. I run an entire blog on the topic of social media propaganda at Occupy Propaganda – the title … Continue reading Social media, confirmation bias and its use in marketing #FakeNews #Propaganda #SocialMedia

Climate: Eating vegetarian has little impact on your household carbon emissions

In spite of popular claims that eating vegetarian offers a dramatic reduction on your personal carbon emissions , the actual reduction is about 2%. Which means it is one of the last places you should focus your attention, in terms of having a meaningful impact. I run a separate blog called Social Panic, focusing on … Continue reading Climate: Eating vegetarian has little impact on your household carbon emissions

Energy: Should you buy carbon offsets, an EV or solar PV to reduce your environmental impact? It depends.

Should you buy an EV? Should you install solar PV? Details matter a lot as to whether your decision leads to actual environmental improvements – or not. Should you buy carbon offsets? A better solution is to invest in direct solutions, even helping your neighbors become efficient energy consumers, to buy or install solar PV or an EV, depending on where you live.

ACA, Medicare-for-All, Single Payer, Health Insurance and related topics

Most everything we think we know about the Affordable Care Act is probably wrong. The attached 50 page paper explains what you need to know, in detail including the unusual defects in the Act such as subsidy cut off levels are set by the regional poverty level and have nothing to do with insurance rates, meaning that someone earning $65,000/year is above the subsidy level but is faced with a $50,000 or more annual insurance bill (see paper for details). Or that the ACA does, in fact, have a pre-existing condition waiting period. We need to solve these problems but all politicians remain stuck on stupid and refuse to propose coherent solutions that are workable.

FDA hit with one quarter million fake comments to proposed rules

More than a quarter million comments submitted to the Food and Drug Administration about flavored vapor products were fake, according to a watchdog group. Source: FDA hit with bot-generated wave of fake comments on flavored vapor products About one half million comments were filed of which 255,000 have already been evaluated as fake; and additional … Continue reading FDA hit with one quarter million fake comments to proposed rules

#Google’s #Android was developed first and foremost as a spying tool, may be sanctioned by the European Union

For Google, the consequences could prove vast. Packaging tools like search, and including them on Android devices, offers the company a way to capture data about users — and show them more ads. Eliminating that pathway for profits and insight could prompt Google to rethink the entire ecosystem for Android, which it licenses to device … Continue reading #Google’s #Android was developed first and foremost as a spying tool, may be sanctioned by the European Union

HP computers and data privacy and spying

I have an older HP desktop computer. I’ve long observed significant slow downs as various background tasks were underway and I had assumed it was just anti-virus software running in the background. But it was not – instead, the HP Support Assistance was frequently scanning the entire system, using 55% of the CPU and hogging … Continue reading HP computers and data privacy and spying