Happy Thursday fellow earthlings! I hope you all had a good night sleep, and are ready for a great day! Last night, I wanted to stay up to see the Blood Moon lunar eclipse, but it was raining in these parts. In case you missed it too, I will share some spectacular photographs and video later in the article.
We begin the news today with pieces focusing on the free speech battle, between telecommunications giants, and world governments. We then jump around from there. So draw up that chair, and grab your bowl of cereal, and let’s get started.
Twitter is suing the US government over First Amendment Rights.
Twitter, the 160 character king of social media, might be short on characters, but they are long on users all over the world. Some of those users, are deemed to be extremist by international governments. Through surveillance, these user accounts are located, and information is removed from their feed, or the account is closed. Twitter wants to disclose to its users a Transparency Report, which documents just how many National Security Letters and Foreign Intelligence Act orders it has received. The US government said no, and so Twitter is suing over First Amendment infringements.
In a related case brought by an “unnamed telecommunications company,” regarding First Amendment infringements, and FBI security letters, the 9th District Court of Appeals will hear arguments, to decide whether the process interferes with free speech. While the cases seem to be strictly related to business practices, it is always a good thing when the courts are asked to look at the letter of the US constitution.
Google will debate with the European Union about the public’s right to information.
The European Union is drafting new rules about privacy and the internet. Google is concerned by a new top court ruling that requires the massive search engine to delete certain links to information, that interferes with personal privacy. Google says this action inhibits freedom of information, and now they get to debate the issue with policy makers across Europe. This seems like a moot point to me, as many tend to believe there is no privacy in this world anymore.
Eye of the storm heading for Japan.
The largest cyclonic storm of 2014, is currently heading for Japan. Typhoon Vongfong is listed as a Category 5 typhoon, with winds in excess of 150mph. Japan was hit by another typhoon over the weekend, with as much as 2 inches of rain falling in many areas. Please send good vibes to the region, as they prepare to weather this massive storm.
The continued drought in California is forcing farmers to go high tech.
As severe drought continues, in the prime agricultural regions of the US Pacific coast, farmers are looking for ways to make their water go farther. This is creating a forced evolution in farming techniques, sometimes returning to traditional conservation practices, and other times using advanced technology, to get up to the minute data on soil and plant moisture levels. This concerted effort, between scientists, farmers and high tech companies, aims to increase water conservation and soil health management.
When was the last time you heard a billionaire saying we should all work less?
Carlos Slim, the Mexican billionaire, who’s net worth is dwarfed only by Bill Gates, has come out to say, that a 3 day work week would improve the quality of life for employees, and help national economies. He advocates for longer work days and later retirement, but since most people are already in that boat, not much would change, except for more free personal time. He says that technology can work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, but people should have more free time in their younger years to enjoy life, not just in their old age. I agree!
Were Galactics checking out the Hong Kong Central protests?
One of our dear readers sent this video in to share with us. The production is a bit dramatic, and the video footage rough, but it does look as though a craft appeared over the Hong Kong Central demonstrations. There is also a link in the video to view leaked Roswell film if you are so inclined. Thanks for the share!
Do you know the difference between Fair Trade and Direct Trade?
October is Fair Trade month. Fair Trade practices are based on paying workers, generally in developing nations or depressed communities, a fair living wage, for the products they sell. Fair Trade became very popular in the coffee industry, a number of years ago, and thankfully has spread far and wide. In honor of Fair Trade month, I share this article from Roz Rogoff who explores one step further, into the Direct Trade model followed by a group of coffee growers in Haiti.
Just in case you didn’t get to see the moon last night!
As I said before, it was raining here last night, so I did not get to see the spectacular Blood Moon and total lunar eclipse. If you didn’t get to see it either, check out these awesome pictures and some time lapse video from the Griffin Observatory in California.
That’s it for today! Have a great day and I hope to see you, bright and early tomorrow for more news!
Be Well. Be Joy. Be Love!