07 April 2018

Australia's dodgy Teflon government

The Australian people are subject to governance by a highly organised group of people committing criminal offences, where if caught out you (the general population) cannot pin any offences on the people in government, in effect a government that can do no wrong.

In this day and age of the 'interwebs', it can be difficult to imagine that someone has not heard of the government(?) motto 'nothing to hide nothing to fear', which basically applies to the serf population and not the people in government, where transparency and accountability is not on the agenda, but rather quite the opposite. 

The colonisation of the land mass we call Australia now, began with criminal actions, which  was taken by force and arms by the British crown, from the people already inhabiting this land.

Hardly what you would call noble or honourable actions of the crown.

Since the beginning the settlers who have setup government on this land have gone 'rogue', where in 1865 the 'honourable' crown (you know the ones who supported using force, firearms and violence against the inhabitants of this land) had enough and installed the Colonial Laws Validity Act.

Since old habits are hard to break, this action of going 'rouge' is still the primary method of governance over the good people of Australia.

A popular understanding of the term whistleblower would be that of a person who has seen, documented or experienced illegal or corrupt activities by people in that person's workplace be it in government or the corporate sector.

INSTEAD of focusing on the allegations, in Australia, the people in government and corporations threaten whistleblowers with either loss of their employment which flows on to career loss or with direct harm to their family members.

If that person is to get some sort of hush money, then there is a non disclosure agreement (NDA), which is not only hidden from public but also scrutiny therefore obscuring justice in the process, in effect a document which also supports the organisation's 'do no wrong' fallacy.

See article from 5 Apr 2018 by abc.net.au of the headline:

AFP raids Australian Tax Office whistleblower amid Four Corners investigation

A public servant turned whistleblower employed by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has had his home raided by officers from the ATO and the Australian Federal Police on Wednesday morning, after speaking with reporters in a major joint Four Corners and Fairfax investigation into alleged abuse of power by the ATO.

Adelaide-based Richard Boyle, who has worked at the ATO as a debt collector since 2005, told the ABC his rental unit in suburban Edwardstown was raided by a team of four AFP officers accompanied by an ATO investigator.

"This is an astonishing use of public resources, to investigate someone who has passionately and with every fibre of my being tried to assist taxpayers in meeting their tax obligations and to enforce taxpayers who are ripping the country off by not paying their fair share of tax," he said.

Mr Boyle said the officers arrived at his door about 8:00am.

He was still in his dressing gown and didn't have time to change.

He attempted to film the raid but the AFP officers seized his mobile phone, and the phone of his fiancee.

"They've spent the past couple of hours going through our drawers, going through our personal belongings and documents," he said.

The intervention by officers from the AFP and the ATO comes as the Four Corners program prepares to air its investigation into the extraordinary powers of the ATO.

The warrant specifically refers to Four Corners and Fairfax reporter Adele Ferguson, and alleges that Richard Boyle had illegally taken either originals or copies of taxpayer information, photos of ATO computer screens or emails.

Mr Boyle said there was some suggestion from the AFP and ATO officers at his home that he had committed a crime in speaking to the media.

"It's absolutely astonishing. I'm horrified that this organisation has these powers over the community and I think things need to change," he said.

Mr Boyle has had a series of previous run-ins with the ATO.

In 2016 he was formally reprimanded and had his salary docked, for accessing client records against ATO policy and against advice and cancelling interest charges imposed on taxpayers without ATO approval.

Mr Boyle told Four Corners and Fairfax he was only ever trying to assist those taxpayers.

He was suspended with pay last September over another alleged breach of the Public Service Code of Conduct.

The ATO tried to settle with him in February, offering him a payout and a statement of service, with no admission of liability.

He decided to knock it back to speak to Four Corners and Fairfax.

The Tax Office has since suspended him without pay and his future with the ATO still hangs in the balance.

In a statement, the ATO said protecting confidentiality was "critical for the integrity of Australia's tax and super systems".

"Today, swift action was taken, in the execution of a search warrant against an individual in Adelaide, to secure information which we believe was obtained contrary to our secrecy obligations," the statement said.

"The Commissioner is committed to doing everything possible to secure taxpayer information, and will pursue cases where taxpayer confidentiality has been compromised."

The ATO said there was an ongoing investigation with the AFP.

Four Corners and Fairfax reporter, Adele Ferguson's investigation into allegations of abuse of power by the ATO is due to air on Four Corners next Monday. (9th April 2018)

05 April 2018

China's digital dictatorship

With regards to mass surveillance today, the only difference is that in China it's in your face, whereas in this colony called Australia, it's not so much.

See document (4 pages 377KB) in pdf format:

04 April 2018

Victoria Police caught abusing disabled pensioner

Many a person from the general population does not trust Australia's police force and for good reasons, case law aside.

The most recent surveillance footage from a person's home shows exactly the reasons why the general population should not trust the police.

If the roles were reversed and persons from the general population would use the same amount of excessive force against another single person then those persons would be charged, not so for these police thugs.

Noam Chomsky, a scholar and author clearly articulates in many of this lectures and interviews that the people in government will use whatever is available to them to combat their primary enemy, which is their own population.

A meme about the police policing themselves, where they found that they have done nothing wrong holds true in many cases against Australia's police force.

An example of this lack of integrity within Victoria Police is that of Assistant Commissioner Brett Guerin, who was in charge of investigation police, was an online troll inciting violence against the African community.

While some people may say that the complaint system against police is 'broken', others will say that it is deliberately (by design) broken.

Police are under no obligation or law to not lie in any contact scenario with the general population, but rather encouraged to lie to obtain evidence incriminating the person they are interviewing or in contact with.

Going 'postal' on a disabled pensioner, as seen in the above screen capture of surveillance footage shows how the general population are treated with contempt.

Does the community really expect police to bash a disabled pensioner senseless?

Australia the police state since 26th of January 1788.

See video;

02 April 2018

The sinister attack on your privacy by people in corporations – Intel

Intel should be in the U.S. and European courts.

As briefly as possible;

In late 2017 a security ‘flaw’ was discovered within processors made by Intel.

Some reports even suggest that this security ‘flaw’ was around since 1995.

What the majority of the mainstream media and the IT industry reports did not say was this security flaw was not factually a 'flaw' but rather deliberate code put into the processors by Intel’s engineers in order to gain access to the user’s personal computer.

Intel uses a compact operating system within its processors called MINIX created by Andrew S Tanenbaum unbeknown to him.

Intel engineers queried Tanenbaum for more efficient coding in order to create the back door to their processors, also unbeknown to him with regards to the intentions of their actions.

What the general population calls a ‘bug’ or ‘flaw’ in many cases is a deliberately designed back door to obtain access your data on your personal computer without your knowledge or consent.

We do not recommend the purchase or use of Intel processors.

01 April 2018

Facebook Don’t Want You To Know How Their Algorithm Works

Facebook Tracking Exposed (FTE) is a browser extension which intends to find out - but you won't find it in the chrome store because Facebook have issued a takedown request.

Facebook don’t want you to know how their algorithm works. That will hardly be a shock to you or anyone else, but it is a serious problem. The algorithm is what Facebook uses to determine what you, or anyone else around the world, will see. 

What it chooses to promote or bury has become increasingly important to our democracy. But Facebook don’t want you to know how it works.

Facebook Tracking Exposed (FTE) is a browser extension which intends to find out - it lets users compare their timeline posts against the potential chronological content, helping them to understand why some posts have been promoted, and other haven’t. It also allows comparative research, pooling data to help researchers try and reverse engineer the algorithm itself. 

So far, so great - but you won’t be able to find FTE in the chrome store because Facebook have issued a takedown on the basis on the basis of an alleged trademark infringement. Facebook do not want you to know how their algorithm works - how it controls the flow of information to billions of people.

To pretend the premise of Facebook’s trademark claim is reasonable for a second (it’s not likely - the ‘Facebook’ used in the name describes the purpose of the tool rather than who made it) the question becomes - is it reasonable for Facebook to use this as an excuse to continue to obfuscate their filtering of important information? 

The answer, as all of the news around Cambridge Analytica is making clear, is that it absolutely is not. People looking to understand the platform they are using would find it very difficult to find without the ‘Facebook in the name’. But then, Facebook don’t want you to know how their algorithm works.

This is easy for Facebook to fix, they could revoke their infringement claim, and start taking on some genuine accountability. There is no guarantee that FTE will be able to perfectly reveal the exact workings of the algorithm - attempts to reverse engineer proprietary algorithms are difficult, and observations will always be partial and difficult to control and validate. 

That doesn’t change the fact that companies like Facebook and Google need to be transparent about the ways they filter information. The information they do or don’t show people can affect opinions, and potentially even sway elections. 

We are calling on Google to reinstate the application on the Chrome store and for Facebook to withdraw their request to remove the app. But, then, Facebook don’t want you to know how their algorithm works.

Source: openrightsgroup.org