Ronald Hicks

I'm a graphic designer and musician in my spare time.

NSA spooks are in your cell phone

Before Edward Snowden turned coat on the NSA and spilled the beans on their spying practices most Americans were oblivious to the NSA or just didn’t care. Most Americans had a devil-may-care attitude and went about their business watching football games and having a beer. Besides aren’t the cloak & dagger boys and girls of the NSA are after ‘terrorists’? That’s what the government would have you believe although it has been publicized that gun enthusiasts, conservative Christians, and those that advocate protecting the 1st and 2nd amendments fall somewhere in a gray area and must be monitored as well.

Meanwhile government officials turn a blind eye to people flowing across our borders and wreaking all sorts of havoc.

According to this CNN article there are number of ways you can fix the problem but how many people are actually going to take the time and trouble to buy a purported shielded case to keep the prying ears of the NSA away from your phone. Are you really going to take the time to remove the battery from your phone? What about the suggestion that you dig into the firmware settings in your phone to disable the NSA from remotely powering up your phone?

Besides what about the collaboration between the corporations that manufacture the phones and the NSA? Are you really going to trust Verizon, Sprint, and AT&T to keep the spooks out of your phone? Just remember that all these phones are made in China and/or  Malaysia and they might have some interest in doing some snooping as well.

“How did they get into your phone in the first place? Here’s an explanation by former members of the CIA, Navy SEALs and consultants to the U.S. military’s cyber warfare team. They’ve seen it firsthand.”

via How the NSA can ‘turn on’ your cell phone remotely – Jun. 6, 2014.

Zombies And the Cell Phone Zombie Apocalypse.

Zombies are featured in cable television series. Zombies are in the movies. Homeland Security drills for the zombie apocalypse. Surprise, the zombie apocalypse is right outside your front door. The zombies are in the shopping mall. They’re driving up and down the interstate. You’ll likely to see a zombie at your next 4-way stop with one or two zombies traversing the pedestrian crossing.

We’re all definitely all plugged into the zombie network unless you live in a cave in the Yukon, but with Google recently purchasing a satellite manufacturer the zombie army is likely to be camped there in the future.

The current techno-backlash is over Google Glass and privacy issues. This is ironic because most cell phones zombies are carrying today have cameras both front and back. If you visit Youtube the zombies are filming the most absurd things many times without the consent of the zombies around them.So what’s the big deal with Google Glass and having the camera on your forehead instead of your hand? The video dashboard camera is making traction with zombies putting them in the car both front and the rear. The police already have them. A single dashboard camera can be had for under $100. I guess the real techno-backlash with Google Glass is probably the $1500 price tag. Once the price comes down zombies will be lining up to get them and privacy concerns will go right out the window and they’ll be another rush to put something absurd on Youtube.

So we currently we have cell phone zombies anticipating the coming zombie apocalypse. If you want the latest news on the zombie apocalypse as you’re strolling through the zombie shopping mall checking out the latest in zombie fashion at Wal-Mart just remember to look up once in awhile so you don’t bump into the zombie next to you.

 

 

“Yes, the Zombie Apocalypse has materialized and we are it. Everywhere you look you find the deathlike trance- frozen faces of we necromantic slaves with twitching fingers.”

via Our Phone Obsession Is Turning Us Into Zombies | Alternet.

Asteroid Near Earth 2014

Asteroids occupy what would be considered the Solar System’s natural landfill. Most asteroids are tucked neatly away in an asteroid belt that sits in between Mars and Jupiter. They range in size anywhere from a grain of sand up to something about a third of the size of our moon. Some asteroids are dustier, less dense, and lighter in color while others are forebodingly dark, more dense, and composed of nickel and iron.

There tends to be a lot of random motion amongst  the asteroids as they orbit in unison around the sun. There’s a lot of bumping and grinding going  on causing them to break into smaller pieces of debris. The combined gravitational force of the asteroid belt keeps things tidy most of the time. But once in great while Jupiter’s gravitational field stirs things around and will toss an asteroid out of the great belt causing it to wander across our Solar System seeking a new orbit.

This is where things get dicey. Fate has it that most of these wandering asteroids are very dark and are often spotted later rather than sooner by astronomers. Size really matters here as we witnessed with the recent asteroid that came down in Siberia. That particular asteroid wasn’t that large and went undetected by the astronomical community. Luckily it fell into a fairly remote area. By the time it was noticed it was too late, some building’s windows were shattered, a handful of  people were injured, and the rest of them screamed and pooped in their pants.

This particular asteroid, known to astronomers as  2014 HQ124, was spotted back in late April. They’re just now telling us about it. Thanks. Fortunately for us on Earth this one is passing by at a safe distance of 3 lunar distances, that’s about 770,000 miles as the UFO flies. What’s is really worrisome about all these rogue asteroids is that are being spotted more frequently. On the other hand it might be our improved telescopes, especially the robotic telescopes that don’t sleep and continuously scan the skies.

This one asteroid has grabbed a lot of attention since it very dark and metallic. It is 10 to 20 times the size of the asteroid that recently came to Earth in Siberia. If this particular asteroid were aimed toward Earth – even at a glancing blow it would be cataclysmic and could possibly create a toilet paper shortage for the survivors because there would be a lot of people pooping in their pants.  Let’s just hope that we have many more near misses in the future.

“A newfound asteroid will safely pass Earth on June 8 from a distance of about 777,000 miles (1.25 million kilometers), more than three times farther away than our moon.” via Asteroid Discovered by NASA to Pass Earth Safely – NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Homeless Spikes – London

Homeless people  have always been part of our society. According to Deuteronomy 15:7-8, “If there is a poor man among your brothers in any of the towns of the land that the LORD your God is giving you, do not be hardhearted or tightfisted toward your poor brother. Rather be openhanded and freely lend him whatever he needs.” It looks like this has been overlooked by the private citizens of this block of luxury flats located in London.

The poor here are being treated like pigeons rather than human beings. It doesn’t matter if you install spikes to prevent pigeons from roosting since the birds of the air neither sow nor reap, but your fellow man is different. This is simply the act of hard-heart people that have accumulated wealth and have no compassion for their fellow man and no inclination to lend them a helping hand.

Kathrine Stokes, 39, of Hull, East Yorkshire, photographed studs outside Tesco in Regent Street, London and uploaded the picture on Twitter.

She said: “It’s sad. It demonstrates a meanness and a lack of humanity for people.”

Some of the residents of these luxury flats were interviewed in this article and out of shame and disregard they only want to give only their first name or remain anonymous. There is one question that is nagging about this situation – Who will take the blame if someone that is not homeless or handicapped falls on the spikes and is injured? Although it nots likely to happen it would be interesting to see if the spikes are removed and who would answer up for the injured individual?

I think it is more important to focus on helping your fellow man rather than treating them like vermin.

“Metal spikes have been installed outside a block of luxury flats in London to deter homeless people from sleeping there.”

via ‘Homeless spikes’ installed outside London flats – Telegraph.

Voices in Your Head – Military Madness

Voices in one’s head is often a complaint of people suffering from schizophrenia. If you take a quick peek out your window today you’ll often see someone  walking down the street or driving their car responding to an invisible voice. You would start to think that the world has gone mad and there is as many mentally ill people walking the streets as there are in your local asylum.

If you want to have your own voices in your head a quick trip to your local cell phone store or kiosk  is all that is necessary. There are dozens of cell phones available to bring you the cacophony of the Internet along with phone calls and all those beeps and boops from your social media pals. The voices in your head come with different options to pay. You can pay monthly, prepay, or even sign a short-term contract. Why bother with government healthcare and waiting to be admitted to entertain the voices in your head?

If you don’t have the money to get your own cell phone or perhaps you’re out of job or the local nuthouse is full it’s difficult to entertain the voices in your head. One option you have is to get together with other folks like you and petition your government to give you a leg up on the madness that you crave.

Don’t despair our bloated military industrial complex has the solution and they’re not hiding it. All you have to do is go out and practice some civil disobedience and will be brought to you in the form of an Active Denial Systems that will paint you with electromagnetic energy making you feel like you’ve gotten a nasty sunburn. If that’s not enough the Sierra Nevada Corporation brings you something called MEDUSA(Mob Excess Deterrent Using Silent Audio). It’s meant to muffle an angry crowd, but unfortunately it cooks your brain in the process.

If you not in the protesting mood and don’t feel like getting a nasty electromagnetic sunburn or having your brain soft-scrambled there’s always the Obama phone. Hopefully there’s a few left so you can entertain those voices in your head.

“His positive symptoms included a delusion that he was being sadistically tortured by the government via microwave technology.”

via Can the Military Actually Put Voices in Your Head?.

Mind altering lasers – dancing fruit flies

Mind altering lasers have been recently developed by a group of scientists at the Vienna University of Technology. The device developed by scientists is humorously called FlyMAD, which stands for Fly Mind Altering Device, and is composed of infrared lasers. The laser is aimed at specific brain cells gradually warming them and causing the fly’s behavior to change. The scientists have discovered that by aiming the mind altering lasers at specific areas within the fruit fly’s brain causes them to go into a courtship dance.

The scientists have found the mind altering laser’s sweet spot to be around 30 degrees Celsius, which is about 86 degrees Fahrenheit. Imagine a warm summer day. Scientists hope to pinpoint exactly which neurons in the fruit fly’s brain are responsible for specific behaviors. Can this type of thing be scaled up to humans?

Are these mind altering lasers being secretly used by the military industrial complex? These type of question will remain on the table until it is accidentally divulged in a dirty Washington scandal when a corporate lobbyist tries to warm the jellyfish brain of congressman to vote in favor of some sort of coveted funding. In the meantime it might actually be a good idea to don your tinfoil hat.

“Scientists have created a thermogenetic tool that can alter a fly’s mind and make it sing and dance”. via Mind altering lasers makes fruit flies ‘sing and dance’ | Descrier News.

Meteor Showers Comet 209P/Linear| StarDate Online

A new meteor shower is on tap for the continental United States as the Earth passes through an old debris field left behind in the 1700’s by Comet 209P/LINEAR. Comet 209P/LINEAR is a short term periodic comet that orbits roughly every five years between the orbits of Earth and Jupiter. Comet 209P/LINEAR is usually a small dim comet that isn’t spectacular as other comets such as Hale-Bopp and Halley, yet it lays down the essential ingredients for a meteor shower like most other comets. Because of it’s orbit the Earth usually does not pass through the debris field it leaves behind to produce a meteor shower. According to astrophysicists Jupiter’s gravitational field has pushed the debris field left behind in the 1700’s so the Earth will be passing directly through it.

This gives an opportunity for those of Earth to be treated to a meteor shower that has never been witnessed in modern times. Other periodic meteor showers such as the Leonids and Geminids that can be observed from year to year tend to be predictable and average, but the debris field left behind by comet 209P/LINEAR has scientists guessing and we could be in for a spectacular show. Predictions are ranging anywhere from 200 to 1000 meteors per hour depending on which scientist you ask.

Some astrophysicists are pointing out that the debris particles left behind by comet 209P/LINEAR won’t be crashing into the Earth’s atmosphere as quickly as other comets’ debris. This will result in meteors that will light up the sky a little longer and produce longer streaks.

Tickets for this show tonight are free and courtesy of our Creator. No artificial fireworks needed.

“A brand new meteor shower could light up the pre-dawn sky on May 24, perhaps firing off hundreds of “shooting stars.””

via 2014 Meteor Showers | StarDate Online.

Hepatitis A accidental exposure Red Robin

Hepatitis A might have been accidentally spread by a Red Robin restaurant employee in Springfield, MO. An estimated 5,000 customers may have been exposed to hepatitis A. An employee of Red Robin had been diagnosed with hepatitis A

Health department officials with Springfield-Green county were notified about the illness Tuesday. State and federal officials rushed to get enough vaccine to innoculate customers that had visited the restaurant from the 8th through the 16th of May.Hepatitis A can affect the liver. Health officials hope to get as many customers vaccinated within a 2 week period otherwise the hepatitis A vaccine may not be effective.

Springfiled is located in southwest Missouri and has a population around 160,000 people.

Hepatitis A can be spread by the feces of an infected person that comes in contact with food or drink served to a restaurant customer. Proper hand washing is the best way to prevent the spread of hepatitis a. Most cases of hepatitis A are not life threatening and symptoms clear up in a few weeks. Liver damage is rare with hepatitis A and there are instances of relapse. Yellowing of the eyes, nausea, vomiting, and fever are often the symptoms of an infection. A vaccine was introduced in the early 1990’s and cases of hepatitis a nationwide have dramatically decreased.

Another Red Robin employee in Stroudsburg, PA was diagnosed with hepatitis A in early May. Other incidents include a Teavana worker giving out tea samples in Indianapolis, MI. Shoppers might have been exposed on three occasions.

Drastic lifestyle changes like preparing more meals at home and raising our own food are good options to guard our health. If we rely on the FDA and CDC our lives may be in peril.

“Health officials worry that as many as 5,000 people could have been exposed to hepatitis A at a Red Robin restaurant here after a worker was diagnosed with the virus.

via Springfield Red Robin worker may have exposed thousands to hepatitis.”

Regional Newspapers Struggle to be Read| SBS News

Regional newspapers were a valuable source of news for many towns and cities in the United States. Many major metropolitan cities across the United States had at least two regional papers. Some larger cities had more. When a city had two regional papers one paper would be more conservative the other a little more liberal. Whatever the case the reader had a choice between two perspectives on the local news.

Corporate media groups have gobbled many regional newspapers across a wide swath of U.S. cities. Technology played a part in the decline of regional newspaper. Photocomposition, also known as cold type, replaced the Linotype press. Many skilled workers were put out of a job. Offset printing, which was lighter and cheaper, eventually replaced the Linotype. These factors combined to increase the bulk market value of newspapers. Heirs to these usually family owned regional newspapers could no longer bear the estate taxes forcing them to sell out to corporate media chains.

Family owned regional newspapers were quickly turned into public stock that was in turn were sold to large chains such as Gannet and Knight-Ridder.

Regional newspapers were no longer a public service, now the emphasis was on profit. The larger newspaper chains had political interests. The news was now lensed through politics. Political pressure created sanitized news. Any political opposition was quickly forced to the back pages or ignored completely.

The advent of the Internet forced further consolidation of corporate media. Newsroom staff member jobs were cut.

On the other hand the Internet has brought us independent bloggers and niche Internet radio that can bring us the important issues we face something the lamestream doesn’t want to talk about.

“That kind of news is available only in the local paper. It’s not the type of journalism that topples governments or uncovers the latest celebrity scandal, but the role of the local newspaper is arguably just as important.”

via Comment: Without local papers, regional voices would struggle to be heard | SBS News.

Godzilla 2014 – Movie Review

Godzilla was the science fiction movie of choice when I was growing up as a child. Back then televisions were simple affairs with mechanical channel changers with only 3 or 4 channels to choose from. The television world was a box where the world was black and white and the viewer, the actors, and announcers were in bed by 10 pm following a sign-off with patriotic music and movie clips reminding citizens of America’s military might. Television was sort of new back then and Godzilla was the late night sinful treat for kids staying up past their bedtime. The black and white Godzilla of those days was a bad monster keeping the really bad monsters at bay. At that age I never understood why we dropped atomic bombs on Japan and what all the fuss was about when it came to wars.

Godzilla sprang from Japan’s film industry after the devastation of World War II. Much of the nation was left homeless and starving. Now it’s 2014 and Godzilla has been rescripted and regurgitated dozens of times. The public runs to see the latest version. Times have changed and the message  carried by the old black and white Godzilla films of Japan’s World War II atomic devastation has been sanitized out. Godzilla is still portrayed as the ‘king of monsters’ in today’s modern versions but the message is more about environmental concerns, a smidgen of family drama, and a world free of atomic bombs.

I don’t want to spoil the most recent remake of Godzilla but rather tell you to be prepared to stick around for at least 2 hours. You’ll notice a tip of the hat to the movie ‘2012’ with all the metropolitan destruction and chaos. You’ll also get to see a tsunami that will remind you of the one that struck Indonesia in 2007. I don’t think they ever made a movie about that. Oh well, back to Godzilla. He still is the king of monsters and you get to see him belch after he nixes the idea of America using nuclear weapons.