#AxisOfEasy 204: New “Hate Speech” Bill Provides For Pre-Crime, House Arrest And Ankle Tracking Bracelets



Weekly Axis Of Easy #204

Last Week’s Quote was  “The main thing that I learned about conspiracy theory, is that conspiracy theorists believe in a conspiracy because that is more comforting. The truth is far more frightening – Nobody is in control. The world is rudderless.” was Alan Moore, winner was Sammy Jakubowicz

This Week’s Quote:  “People would rather be wrong than alone.”   … by???

THE RULES: No searching up the answer, must be posted to the blog – the place to post the answer is at the bottom of the post, in the comments section.

The Prize: First person to post the correct answer gets their next domain or hosting renewal is on us.


In this issue:

  • Morgan Stanley and Mint Mobile report data breaches
  • Kaseya ransomware offering fake security upgrades
  • 36 US states sue google over anti-trust violations
  • PrintNightmare: Yet another Microsoft critical security flaw
  • Twitter falls in line, will censor for India
  • Canada’s C-36 “hate speech” bill provides for pre-crime, house arrest and ankle tracking bracelets
  • Pentagon cancels 10B contract for Microsoft
  • How Mimetic desire makes the world go round
  • Cuba shuts down Internet as mass protests erupt in the streets
  • White House wants social media and SMS carriers to police “misinformation” in text messages
  • AxisOfEasy Salon 44: Interview with Max Borders
Morgan Stanley and Mint Mobile report data breaches

A sampling of the data breaches in the last week:

Morgan Stanley: via a vulnerable Accelion FTA server deployed by a third party vendor, hackers were able to access customer personal data within its Stockplan system. Data includes name, address and social security numbers. The data was encrypted, but alas, the hackers obtained the decryption key in the course of the attack.

Accelion sells a series of Enterprise Content Firewalls and their File Transfer Appliance (FTA) was revealed to have a bug in January. The company announcement says “but the patch was released with minimal impact.” Tell that to Morgan Stanley.

Read: https://beta.darkreading.com/attacks-breaches/morgan-stanley-discloses-data-breach

Mint Mobile reported that after customer data was hacked from their system it was used to illegally SIM swap some of the affected customer numbers. When hackers do that they are essentially hijacking the victim’s mobile phone number.

Where this becomes serious is when those mobile phone numbers are used for second factor authentication. One of the reasons why it generally considered safer to use a MFA app like Authy or Authenticator than SMS messages to your phone number for 2FA.

Read: https://www.bleepingcomputer.com/news/security/mint-mobile-hit-by-a-data-breach-after-numbers-ported-data-accessed/

Kaseya ransomware offering fake security upgrades

Hackers and spammers are piling onto the latest supply chain attack according to Kayesa, the company most recently compromised. We reported last week how the remote management application supplier was hacked and thousands of its clients infected with REVil ransomware.

That was big news, and now phishing campaigns are being sent out posing as security fixes for Kayesa’s previously compromised VSA appliance. Those notices are in fact depositing various strains of malware on the victim’s computer.

As per a statement from Kaseya, going forward the company will never issue a download link in an email to customers. So never click on a link in an email purportedly from Kaseya.

Meanwhile, Kayesa finally did issue a real patch to fix the vulnerability that caused the problem in the first place.

Read: https://www.bleepingcomputer.com/news/security/kaseya-warns-of-phishing-campaign-pushing-fake-security-updates/

PrintNightmare: Yet another Microsoft critical security flaw

Microsoft has issued a not so rare critical vulnerability patch outside “Patch Tuesday.” Patch Tuesday is the usual monthly slew of fixes for all the crap discovered to be broken in the near ubiquitous operating system. The latest gaping security hole, dubbed “PrintNightmare” was rushed out immediately because it allows takeover of the organization’s Microsoft domain controller and was already being actively exploited in the wild. The weakness is around Windows computers having the ability to install unsigned printer drivers.
One researcher 
pointed out that fully patched machines may still be vulnerable if they have Point and Print enabled, which apparently many enterprises do.
tweeted this one right away from @AxisOfEasy as soon as we became aware of it. Be sure to follow us here if you want to see these types of breaking alerts as they happen….

Read: https://krebsonsecurity.com/2021/07/microsoft-issues-emergency-patch-for-windows-flaw/

36 US states sue google over anti-trust violations

A  coalition of 35 US states has sued Google over anti-trust violations  around the company’s app store Google Play, who’s new policy to take  effect in September would require all Play store apps to pay a 30%  commission to Google:

To collect and maintain this extravagant  commission, Google has employed anti-competitive tactics to diminish and  disincentivize competition in Android app distribution, Google has not  only targeted potentially competing app stores, but also has ensured  that app developers themselves have no reasonable choice but to  distribute their apps through the Google Play Store.

This is now the fourth anti-trust case pending against Google, all of which revolve around the theme of Google being the “monopoly gatekeeper” of  the internet.

Read: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/google-antitrust-lawsuit-36-states/

Twitter falls in line, will censor for India

The last hold-out in Big Tech against the government of India’s demands to censor online content and provide surveillance to the state has backed down. Last week a lawyer for Twitter walked into a Delhi courtroom and told the judge the company would henceforth comply with India’s Interim Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code which came into effect in February.

The measure is:

“Justified by the need to ensure security in the country and protect its digital  sovereignty – obligate Twitter and others to do is remove posts and  produce user grievance reports. The companies’ executives could also be jailed for non compliance.”

Platforms must remove problematic content within 36 hours of being notified by Indian authorities, “present new encryption and traceability requirements, and mandate  “proactive monitoring.””

Google and Facebook are already complying with the code.

Read: https://reclaimthenet.org/twitter-agrees-to-censor-for-india/

Canada’s C-36 “hate speech” bill provides for pre-crime, house arrest and ankle tracking bracelets

Canadian Justice Minister David Lametti has introduced our country’s newest  Internet content regulation in the form of Bill C-36, which seeks to modify Canada’s Criminal Code and Human Rights Act for “hate propaganda, hate crimes and hate speech.”

The bill endeavors to define “hatred” as  “mean[ing] the emotion that involves detestation or vilification and that is stronger than dislike or disdain;” and does make specific exclusion that statements are not “hatred” if they merely “discredit, humiliates, hurts or offends.“


There are some disturbing aspects of these proposed amendments. One is ambiguity. An offence is committed if statements are:

Motivated by bias, prejudice or hate based on race, national or ethnic origin,  language, colour, religion, sex, age, mental or physical disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other similar factor.”

Does that mean I’m committing an offence if I say  Germans as a race are sub-par hockey players? What about if I condemn Jihadists? Does this mean I have to be cool with biological males competing in women’s sports? Can I politely disagree with that?

Another troubling aspect is the amendments contain literal elements of pre-crime. Somebody can make a case before a judge that they:

“ Fear[] on reasonable grounds that another person will commit:

(a) an offence under section 318 or subsection 319(1) or (2);

(b) an offence under subsection 430(4.‍1); or

(c) an offence motivated by bias, prejudice or hate based on race, national or  ethnic origin, language, colour, religion, sex, age, mental or physical  disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any  other similar factor.”

And if the magistrate signs off on it,  they can order the subject (the “another person”) “enter into recognizance” for a period of up to a year.

What’s recognizance?

It means the “another person” may have to:

  • Remain under house arrest
  • Wear an ankle tracking bracelet
  • Abstain from consumption of alcohol and drugs, and provide urine or blood samples to confirm compliance
It  further provides that a person who refuses to comply with recognizance goes to prison for up to two years. All of which happens without any due process, other than an appeals process for somebody who has already been ordered into recognizance.

So the score so far:

  • Bill  C-10: gives the CRTC regulatory powers over the  internet, opens the path to content censorship and licensing  requirements for all content creators.
  • Bill C-11: censors ‘hurtful words against  politicians’  and provisions Internet Kill Switches  to take out offending content
  • Bill  C-36: puts you under house arrest and orders you to undergo drug tests,  abstain from alcohol and wear an ankle bracelet without a day in court  before it happens

The bill: https://parl.ca/DocumentViewer/en/43-2/bill/C-36/first-reading

Pentagon cancels 10B contract for Microsoft

During  the Trump administration a 10 Billion cloud computing contract for the Pentagon’s JEDI program was awarded to Microsoft, much to the chagrin of those who were not awarded the contract, like Amazon. The subtext was that this was some sort of affront to how things were done and Trump was  letting his animus for Bezos get in the way of awarding a huge chunk of pork to its rightful recipients. Amazon sued, I actually thought I covered all this in previous issues of AoE but can’t seem to find any of this.

The Pentagon has cancelled that contract. It now wants  Microsoft and Amazon to split a contract on a new JEDI specification. Microsoft shares slumped on the news… while Amazon’s, predictably,  soared. That was good for the Pelosi’s. Both  speaker of the house Nancy Pelosi and her husband Paul Pelosi, bought about a couple million dollars worth of Amazon call options between them, in May. Those calls are now very nicely into the money.  Nice work if you can get it.

What’s interesting is that statistically most professional hedge fund managers and financial advisors can’t beat the S&P500 (or whatever their benchmarks are).  And yet pretty well everybody in Congress, who ostensibly are not professional traders or investors, consistently beat the  markets. Weird.

Read: https://www.zerohedge.com/political/pentagon-cancels-10-billion-jedi-cloud-deal-awarded-microsoft

Of Interest: How Mimetic desire makes the world go round

(Sometimes I feel like AoE has devolved into an endless litany of big tech venality and political corruption or cluelessness. It must be a tough  grind reading it. Let’s start adding some signal that isn’t total  buzzkill).

Worth listening to or watching is the Bankless podcast  interview with Luke Burgis, the author of “Wanting: The Power of Mimetic Desire In Everyday Life.” Bankless is a podcast geared toward the Ethereum economy and DeFi, but the interview is wide ranging applicable everywhere. They don’t even really talk about cryptos until  well into the second part of the interview. Before that the discussion is around the innate, veritably baked-in behavioural traits that cause people to want what other people want. The second order effects of that are far reaching and have compelling explanatory power.

Listen/watch: http://podcast.banklesshq.com/72-the-power-of-mimetic-desire-luke-burgis

Cuba shuts down Internet as mass protests erupt in the streets

We may be in the early innings of the fall of communism in Cuba as the economic situation there has deteriorated to the point where mass protests erupted in the streets over the weekend. Protests are rare in Cuba. Political dissenters face harsh penalties. Political executions have taken place as late as 2016. Political prisoners face torture, psychiatric torture, forced labour camps and have been subjected to biological experiments.

So for tens of thousand of Cubans to spill out into the streets demanding an the end of dictatorship and communism is quite remarkable.

Predictably, the Cuban government shut down the Internet connections and platforms trying to contain messaging into and out of the island. Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram and Telegram were targeted. Meanwhile #soscuba began circulating on Twitter.

The genie may be out of the bottle however, as this Quartz article describes the build-out of Cuba’s 3G network since 2018 may have given the Internet enough penetration there to circumvent state ordered suppression of communications.

Read: https://abcnews.go.com/Technology/wireStory/cubas-internet-cutoff-tactic-global-despots-78804049

And: https://qz.com/2032328/cubas-protests-are-getting-amplified-thanks-to-its-3g-network/

White House wants social media and SMS carriers to police “misinformation” in text messages

From the politicization of COVID file….

Politico reported yesterday that the DNC (Democratic National Committee) “and other Biden allied groups” are:

“planning to engage fact-checkers more aggressively and work with SMS carriers to dispel misinformation about vaccines that is sent over social media and text messages. “

As a furor seems to have erupted over Conservative Charlie Kirk’s sending via SMS a call to sign a petition against the administration’s plans to send canvassers door-to-door to drum up vaccination participancy.

It is interesting to note that Kirk’s SMS read:

“Biden is sending goons DOOR-TO-DOOR to make you take a Covid-19 vaccine. Sign the petition to: No medical raids in America.”

It’s bombastic, but I don’t see the misinformation in there, only an objection to what some may see as vaccination coercion.

Still, the important point is this: so called “fact checkers” are already moderating everything you say on social media and they frequently turn out to be either wrong, biased or both. And now, telecoms are supposed to be monitoring your SMS communications for misinformation. Does anybody other than me see a problem with this?

Especially because COVID has become irreparably polarized.
Caption: Fair and balanced.

Not to mention that vaccine hesitancy is more accurately captured by age and educational level than political alignment. The young and non-college educated most likely to be hesitant, and hesitancy seems to decline over time. The top reasons given for hesitancy are:

  1. Possible side effects concerns
  2. “Wait and see”
  3. Don’t trust COVID vaccine specifically
  4. Don’t trust the government

From: https://nypost.com/2021/07/12/dnc-biden-allies-want-phone-carriers-to-vet-anti-vax-messages/

And: https://www.politico.com/news/2021/07/12/biden-covid-vaccination-campaign-499278

AxisOfEasy Salon 44: Interview with Max Borders

Charles Hugh Smith and I were back in the saddle for AoE Salon #44, with a special gues, author, futurist and social commentator  Max Borders.

Borders’ work around the idea of a coming “social singularity” has a lot of overlap with oft explored ideas here on the Axis: decentralization, networks and tectonic shifts occurring in the world today.

We explored the concept of “Satyagraha” or “Truthforce” and the ideals expressed in freedom movements throughout history.

Watch: https://axisofeasy.com/podcast/aoe-salon-44-we-say-satyagraha-they-say-sedition-with-max-borders/

3 thoughts on “#AxisOfEasy 204: New “Hate Speech” Bill Provides For Pre-Crime, House Arrest And Ankle Tracking Bracelets

  1. Hi Mark J

    I think you mischaracterize the new hate speech bill, though it is probably pretty scary even when read correctly.

    However, on the ‘pre-crime’ stuff: the application based on fear (on reasonable grounds) has to be brought with the approval of the Attorney General. That approval is not easily got. Prosecution for hate crimes today needs AG consent, and rights groups complain that the AG does not consent often enough.
    (That’s probably just as well.)

    If the complaint is brought, with the approval of the AG, then a judge may order the parties – not just the person with the fear but the person who is alleged to be causing the fear – to appear before the judge. ‘may order’ because the judge may just decide there’s nothing to the allegation. But the judge will not order a recognizance without a hearing. So the person gets a day in court at this stage, not simply at the appeal level, as your column suggests.

    Also, a recognizance is normally just a serious promise not to commit an offence (again, or in the first place). There could be a pledge of assets to secure compliance, in some cases.

    The recognizance may be accompanied by the other measures you mention only if the person has already committed an offence of the kind that is now alleged to be feared.

    The recognizance lasts a year, but may be extended to two. BUT the jail for breaching it or refusing to give it is for a maximum (not a fixed term) of one year, not two. It could be a month, or a week, or renewable up to a year if the refusal persists.
    Already pretty drastic, so you don’t really have to double it up to make it worse. It would be freakishly rare for the other conditions of a recognizance to be required, and only for someone who is found by the judge to be likely to do something very serious and whose promise can’t be trusted on its own.

    It is still a good question whether any of this is really needed. Do we have a lot of threats to commit hate crimes that lead to reasonable fears?

    Where recognizances are now commonly used are in family disputes, to keep abusive spouses (almost all men) away from their spouse (almost all women) where there are threats of violence. Such recognizances too often do not work, and the spouses are killed anyway. So figuring out how to beef them up so they work is a good thing – but it would make sense to start this stuff in the family cases where there are lots of documented cases of failure, not in the speculative area of offences of hatred. There are such cases, but not with the depressing regularity of family violence.

    Hate speech up to now has usually involved incitement to violence against the targets, not just general mental states of vilification etc. The language of the bill is intended to reserve its use to extreme cases – and there are extreme cases out there. Reasonable people may disagree on when extreme hatred should be a crime. How clearly does one need to foresee that someone will drive a truck into a crowd or into a family before taking measures to stop them? pretty clearly, but arguably not never.


  2. Regarding ‘White House wants social media and SMS carriers to police “misinformation” in text messages’:

    You state that “you don’t see the misinformation in there, only an objection” in the SMS message “Biden is sending goons DOOR-TO-DOOR to make you take a Covid-19 vaccine. Sign the petition to: No medical raids in America.”

    An objective reading of the words ‘goons’, ‘make’ and ‘medical raids’ should lead one to believe that they are clearly meant to convey a message that Biden’s program is designed to send federal government representatives to people’s homes on unlawful raids to force people into receiving vaccinations, even if against their will. However, in reality, the actual program is designed to work in cooperation with volunteers and local authorities to provide door-to-door outreach to un-vaccinated regions. This mischaracterization of the program amounts to a misinformation campaign and serves only to hamper initiatives to bring the pandemic under control. And dealing with the effects of misinformation campaigns during a public health emergency is a legitimate concern for the Biden administration and public health officials.

    However, I’m in agreement with you that asking telecoms to filter SMS messages based on content is problematic. Doing so would likely run afoul of common carrier laws unless exemptions exist, or could be carved out, for public health emergencies. The Biden may need to explore other options for countering these types of messages.

  3. I’ve heard that quote before, and it’s driving me crazy. It sounds like something George Carlin would say, so that’s my guess.

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