Forget Facebook

Leaving facebook

Don’t remember exactly when I closed my facebook account, it’s been at least one month. Seems like each week since there has been at least one bombshell discovery of another insidious action by facebook to either misuse its user’s identities and private information or another revelation that facebook actively work to not only protect users flooding pages with fake news, but to also trying to cover up their actions.

In every case it’s either a claim they didn’t know and will try to do better or it’s just impossible to police their own platform but they will try try to do better. The reality is the company whose motto is “Move fast and break things” knows they don’t have to do better because monopolies can do whatever they want. I don’t believe facebook set out to break democracy in America but now that they have become a trillion dollar enterprise they not only don’t care, they know democracy is an obstacle that must remain broken.

Don’t remember exactly when I closed my facebook account, it’s been at least one month. Seems like each week since there has been at least one bombshell discovery of another insidious action by facebook to either misuse its user’s identities and private information or another revelation that facebook actively work to not only protect users flooding pages with fake news, but to also trying to cover up their actions.

In every case it’s either a claim they didn’t know and will try to do better or it’s just impossible to police their own platform but they will try try to do better. The reality is the company whose motto is “Move fast and break things” knows they don’t have to do better because monopolies can do whatever they want. I don’t believe facebook set out to break democracy in America but now that they have become a trillion dollar enterprise they not only don’t care, they know democracy is an obstacle that must remain broken.

While I miss interacting with my facebook “friends” and my group pages for BlueRootsRadio, In The Memetimes and all the other group pages to which I belonged, I do appreciate how much of my time I’ve regained. My “screen time” has been roughly cut in half giving me more time to do big projects around the house, read and exercise.

The reason why I emphasized the word friends above is that I’ve learned facebook friends are pretty much just friends on facebook. Prior to leaving I announced my pending departure and invited everyone to visit here on the blog or by email but it has pretty much been crickets. I understand the attraction/addiction to facebook but it wasn’t enough to keep me as a user. A lot of people say they stay to fight back against facebook but it doesn’t work that way. No matter what you do on the platform, if you are using it you are just a tool to give facebook more profits to do more damage.

There is a glimmer of hope on the horizon coming out of Europe where facebook is fighting like hell to avoid being thrust into the possibility of class action suits. The demise of facebook may come from its success of having billions of users. If facebook is held accountable to its users by having to face class action suits that can result in damages able to inflict real financial damage to its bottomline, we might someday see real and lasting change or even its collapse. Facebook could be replaced by an honest social media platform that protects its user’s privacy and relies on an affordable subscription plan and not advertisers with billions of dollars to spend which has put facebook in the mess it now is in.

Feel free to discuss this topic or whatever is on you mind in this post, I just needed to get this off my back so I can move on.

35 thoughts on “Forget Facebook

  1. From Axios
    Democrats’ post-Mueller plan

    Even before Robert Mueller has delivered his final communiqué, Democrats have activated a new phase in the Trump-Russia wars that ultimately could prove more damaging to the president than the special counsel’s investigation.

    Why it matters: For Trump, this has been a behind-the-scenes probe, with sensational yet intermittent revelations. Now, it’s about to become a persistent and very public process — at best, a nuisance; at worst, a threat to his office.

    What’s new: Whether or not Mueller is sitting on a grand finale, Democrats are picking up the baton with a vast probe that already involves a half-dozen committees, and will include public hearings starring reluctant witnesses.

    What House Democrats are thinking after the public Cohen hearing, via an email to Axios from MSNBC analyst Matt Miller: “Incredible to start an investigation and have six months’ worth of leads on the first day.”

    Read more

  2. @Cat Chew: I signed up for the daily word thanks to you, lord knows that when it comes to vocabulary I’m gormless.

    I did watch the hearing but don’t remember any of the currently trending words it sparked in addition to churlish (perdition and trenchant).

    I feel your reservation to wade into the political circus, it can be hazardous to your mental health. One more reason why I dropped Facebook.

    On a housekeeping note, I had to change the security plugin for the blog. WordPress demanded I update to PHP 7.0 or higher and that forced me to replace several old and trusted plugins that are no longer compatible. That’s why you might see extra stuff related to spam. This new plug it covers everything from logins to anonymous spam postings.


  3. Trump Ordered Officials to Give Jared Kushner a Security Clearance

    WASHINGTON — President Trump ordered his chief of staff to grant his son-in-law and senior adviser, Jared Kushner, a top-secret security clearance last year, overruling concerns flagged by intelligence officials and the White House’s top lawyer, four people briefed on the matter said.

    Mr. Trump’s decision in May so troubled senior administration officials that at least one, the White House chief of staff at the time, John F. Kelly, wrote a contemporaneous internal memo about how he had been “ordered” to give Mr. Kushner the top-secret clearance.

    The White House counsel at the time, Donald F. McGahn II, also wrote an internal memo outlining the concerns that had been raised about Mr. Kushner — including by the C.I.A. — and how Mr. McGahn had recommended that he not be given a top-secret clearance.

    Read more (pdf)

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  4. Why did a GOP congressman invite this HUD official to stand behind him at the Michael Cohen hearing?
    If trump wasn’t a racist he wouldn’t have taken out the full page ad on the Central Park 5, pointed to a black man at one of his rallies and said “..there’s my black!”, praised the white supremacists at Charlottesville, have no black executives in his organization and only hire blacks, who despite all this, will remain loyal and give him cover. When you take his whole history into account the question of his bigotry and racism is a no brainer.

    Something curious happened about 90 minutes into the Michael Cohen testimony which transfixed much of Washington on Wednesday: A woman rose behind Rep. Mark Meadows as the North Carolina Republican grilled President Trump’s former fixer on his characterization of the president as a racist.

    The woman — sunglasses affixed to her head, white cape draped over her shoulders — was Lynne Patton, longtime Trump family aide and an official at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Most important, for the cameras, she is African American.

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  5. Podcast: The Argument
    Will Michael Cohen’s Testimony Doom Trump?
    And is Bernie Sanders the Democratic frontrunner?

    This week on “The Argument,” Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt break down Michael Cohen’s testimony before Congress. Does anything from Cohen’s disclosures on Wednesday threaten the future of his former boss’s presidency?

    Then, is a socialist from Vermont the candidate to beat in the 2020 Democratic primaries? Ross Douthat thinks Bernie Sanders’s path in 2020 could echo Ronald Reagan’s in 1980. Michelle explains the leftover antipathy that some Democratic voters still hold toward Sanders after the 2016 election. And David argues that despite the weaknesses of some of Sanders’s policies, his focus on economic populism puts him in the country’s political sweet spot.

    And finally, for those who aren’t yet tired of talking about socialism, the Soviet Union or the Oscars, Ross recommends Pawel Pawlikowski’s “Cold War.”

    Listen: Apple Stitcher Spotify Google Play

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  6. Opinion

    Can a Horrible Boss Be a Great Leader?

    Amy Klobuchar needs to make amends for her behavior.

    The subject of bad bosses is again in the news thanks to Amy Klobuchar, U.S. senator, Democratic presidential aspirant, and, as a recent story in the Times made clear, the living antithesis of whatever “Minnesota Nice” is supposed to be. She throws binders at underlings. She makes them wash her dishes. She suspects office moles. She attempts to sabotage the job prospects of those who want to resign. She reproaches her staff with her own self-pity.

    On a trip to South Carolina, forkless, she makes an aide wash her comb after she’s used it to eat a salad — but apparently not before.

    Though the senator has her defenders — 61 former staffers signed a public letter supporting her — the essential truth of The Times’s story is attested by the fact that for years she has had among the highest rates of staff turnover in the Senate. Klobuchar admits to being “tough” and having “high expectations.” But the behavior described by The Times isn’t tough. It’s horrible.

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    Note; We don’t need another temper tantrum tosser in the WH. Her “on air” demeanor had me believing that’s the way she is all the time. I want Al Franken back.


  7. House passes first major gun control legislation in nearly quarter of a century

    Members of Congress approved measure requiring federal background checks for all firearms sales by vote of 240-190

    Gun control campaigners celebrated a precious win on Wednesday when the US House of Representatives passed its first major legislation on the issue in nearly a quarter of a century.

    Members of Congress approved a measure requiring federal background checks for all firearms sales, including online and at gun shows, by 240 votes to 190. But for now it is a mostly symbolic gesture, not likely to be taken up in the Republican-controlled Senate.

    Even so, Democrats characterised it as a significant move towards relaxing the gun lobby’s grip on Washington and addressing a national epidemic of gun violence, including the deaths of 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas high school in Parkland, Florida, last year that prompted a fresh surge of activism.

    The bill, HR 8, bans firearms transfers by a person who is not a licensed dealer but its exemptions include “gifts to family members and transfers for hunting, target shooting, and self-defense”, the House judiciary committee website says.

    Read more

  8. From the “So what’s new?” department
    Michael Cohen to call Donald Trump a ‘racist’, ‘cheat’ and ‘conman’ in first public hearing
    President’s former lawyer expected to say Trump knew of Roger Stone’s contact with WikiLeaks during 2016 campaign

    Michael Cohen is to accuse Donald Trump of being a “conman” and a “cheat” who had advanced knowledge that a longtime adviser was communicating with WikiLeaks during the 2016 campaign, according to opening testimony he will deliver to Congress on Wednesday.

    Cohen’s prepared remarks, confirmed by the Guardian, include a series of explosive allegations about the presidential campaign.

    The president’s former lawyer, who will publicly testify before the House oversight committee on Wednesday, will state that Trump was told by Roger Stone that WikiLeaks would publish emails stolen from the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton’s campaign.

    “In July 2016, days before the Democratic convention, I was in Mr Trump’s office when his secretary announced that Roger Stone was on the phone. Mr Trump put Mr Stone on the speakerphone,” Cohen’s opening statement reads.

    “Mr Stone told Mr Trump that he had just gotten off the phone with Julian Assange and that Mr Assange told Mr Stone that, within a couple of days, there would be a massive dump of emails that would damage Hillary Clinton’s campaign. Mr Trump responded by stating to the effect of ‘wouldn’t that be great.’”

    Read more

  9. Altname
    Women dressed as characters from “The Handmaid’s Tale” protesting in Washington last year.
    CreditCreditAndrew Harrer/Bloomberg

    Opinion
    The Republicans of Gilead
    A louche administration takes aim at reproductive rights.

    In “The Handmaid’s Tale,” Margaret Atwood’s ever-resonant tale of misogynist dystopia, Christian fascism has a sordid, perverse underbelly. On the surface, the Republic of Gilead, Atwood’s imaginary successor to America, is a place of totalitarian religious austerity. But as the book’s enslaved narrator discovers, the society’s leaders also maintain a brothel, Jezebel’s, full of women who couldn’t fit into the new order. It’s the inevitable flip side of a regime that dehumanizes women, reducing them to their reproductive organs. “Nature demands variety, for men,” says a character called the Commander.

    Donald Trump’s administration turns the Gilead model upside down. Its public image is louche and decadent, with tabloid scandal swirling around the president and many of his associates. This can make it hard to focus on the unprecedented lengths the administration is going to curtail American women’s reproductive rights and enrich the anti-abortion movement.

    Read more (pdf)

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  10. Altname

    WHAT TO DO ABOUT SOCIAL MEDIA?
    by Rodney Crowell

    Note: Rodney Crowell is in my top 5 all time favorite singer songwriters. I respect not only his talent but his insights on politics, culture, and all forms of art. It was easy for me to drop Facebook because I don’t have to rely on it to make a living. This is not the case for Rodney and if you read his letter, I’m sure you will agree.

    For middle class artists such as myself, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram have become indispensable marketing tools. I’ve been grateful for these formats providing the opportunity to engage, one-on-one, and as a group, with a broad spectrum of people who are inclined, for their own reasons, to support my artistic endeavors.

    However, as I’ve tried to comprehend whether or not Facebook’s chief executive and operating officer have any real understanding of how to steer such a sprawling juggernaut through the truth-challenged-cyberscape of global ideology, I’ve been unable to shake the feeling that they simply lack the will.

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