From Pine View Farm

Mammon category archive

Everybody Must Get Fracked 0

Responsible Fiscals 0

Image:  Wells Fargo stagecoach being drawn by weasels.  Driver:  Have you heard?  Our bank has been caught cheating customers again.  Shotgun:  That explains the weasels.


Click for the original image.

The Oil to School Pipeline 0

Magic from the Magic Kingdom 0

El Reg reports that Disney is being sued:

According to the suit, the Disney apps for both iOS and Android do not ask for parental permission before they use software development kits that assign unique identifiers to users and then use those identifiers to track the location of the users, as well as activities in-game and across multiple devices. The data is then fed to advertisers to serve up targeted ads.

“In other words, the ability to serve behavioral advertisements to a specific user no longer turns upon obtaining the kinds of data with which most consumers are familiar (email addresses, etc), but instead on the surreptitious collection of persistent identifiers, which are used in conjunction with other data points to build robust online profiles,” the suit claims.

I wonder whether their defense will be, “All the other kids are doing it.”

DudeBros 0

Well, there is some good news.

A Brooklyn jury deliberated five days before finding Shkreli guilty on three of eight counts. He had been charged with securities fraud, conspiracy to commit securities fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

Prosecutors had accused Shkreli of repeatedly misleading investors about what he was doing with their money. Mostly, he was blowing it with horrible stock picks, forcing him to cook up a scheme to recover millions in losses, they said.

Much more at the link. The story does not mention a sentencing date.

The Pusher Men 0

Transcript.

Health Care: Follow the Money 0

It leads right to health care CEOs.

Transcript.

The Enronning of America 0

Thom talks to Jesse Eisinger, author of The Chickenshit Club, on how justice fails to prosecute executives in this riveting two part interview.

Part One:

Part Two:

Bucolic Living 0

Trumpling Science 0

A scientist speaks out to express his dismay at the Trump administration’s decision ot ignore facts. A snippet:

Nearly seven years ago, I came to work for the Interior Department, where, among other things, I’ve helped endangered communities in Alaska prepare for and adapt to a changing climate. But on June 15, I was one of about 50 senior department employees who received letters informing us of involuntary reassignments. Citing a need to “improve talent development, mission delivery and collaboration,” the letter informed me that I was reassigned to an unrelated job in the accounting office that collects royalty checks from fossil fuel companies.

Follow the link for the scary part.

Trumpling the Rule of Law 0

Dick Polman reminds us that it can happen here and that, if it does, it’s our own damn fault for not paying attention, as a polity, to the politics. A snippet:

The news that his (Donald Trump’s) team seeks to control, thwart, discredit, and perhaps terminate Robert Mueller’s independent probe; the news that he’s already weighing the idea of pardoning himself (and aides and family members) for whatever crimes he claims have never been committed – none of this Putinesque behavior should surprise us. It was all telegraphed in technicolor during the presidential campaign.

In a way I don’t even blame Trump, because he doesn’t know any better. A poseur with Louis XIV pretensions (“L’etat c’est moi,” said the French king – “I am the state”), Trump has no concept of checks and balances, no respect for America’s enduring democratic institutions, and he’s been dodging accountability his whole life. His one mode is attack; long-dead Roy Cohn, his thug mentor, appears to be dispensing advice via his tooth fillings.

Land Grab 0

Fly the Fiendly Skies 0

Rat tge airline gate agent makes and announcement:  Folks, I'm getting a lot of questions about baggage policy, in-flight meals, and wifi, so I'm gonna try to answer everybody's questions at once.  In each of these situations, there is one option that makes your flight more pleasant.  We will never choose that option.  Rat talking to official:  It's nice to give the cattle some clarity.


Click to see the image at its original location.

I used to travel for work. I was stepping on airplanes two or three times a month to fly all around the USA to marvelous sites such as Fargo, North Dakota, and Monroe, Louisiana (no offense to the persons in those cities; I was always treated with hospitality, but the getting there . . . .). If I never step on another US airline, it will be too soon.

On the Cheap 0

Bargaining with the Devilish 0

In the Shadows 0

Inset:  Republican Elephant says to man holding


Click for the original image.

Russian Impulses 0

Shaun Mullen follows the money trail. A snippet:

Beginning in 1984, over 30 years before he ran for president, Trump began tapping into what would become an extensive network of contacts with corrupt businessmen, mobsters and money launderers from the former Soviet Union, Russia and their satellite states to make deals ranging from real-estate sales to beauty pageants sponsorships to bailing out his frequently ailing enterprises.

It is tempting to say that Trump built that network himself as his business empire grew, but in reality members of the network more often used him as a convenient patsy. This has been especially true of money launderers.

Conn Game 0

The Fee Hand of the Market 0

Caption:  This week:  The invisible hand of the free market, AKA Dr. Hand.  Scene:  Hospital Admissions Office.  Dr. Hand:  I'm not really a doctor, but I dress like one to gain unearned moral authority.  Patient:  You're also not invisible.  Patient:  You're also not invisible.  Dr. Hand:  Have you heard of metaphors?  Look, we really must repeal Obamacare and replace it with a truly market-based system.  Patient:  But that's what Obamacare is--a plan that bends over backwards to preserve the role of private insurers.  Dr. Hand:  You must be feverish!  Obamacare is creeping socialism--requiring insurers to provide coverage for people with pre-existing conditions.  How are these poor beleaguered business supposed to turn a profit if they have to insure a bunch of sick people?  Fortunately, the Republican plan will make it possible to force those undesirables into much higher-priced plans--liberating insures from the tyranny of oppressive government regulations.  Patient:  --driving them into bankruptcy and/or killing them.  Dr. Hand:  Best of all the plan will proved enormous tax cuts for the top .01 per cent of American achievers.  Patient:  While 12 million people lose their coverage.  Dr. Hand.  You mean while they choose to go without!  Why do you have freedom?  Patient:  So can I see a real doctor now or would it be more convenient if I just dropped dead now?  Dr. Hand:  Well, from a strictly market-based perspective . . . .  Patient:  I was joking.  Dr. Hand:  Oh, right, me too.  Ha ha.  Final Frame:  Dr. Hand:  But, hey, everybody dies sooner or later, amirite?  Speaking s someone dressed like a doctor.


Click to see the image at its original size and location.

Pie-Eyed 0

Title:  Dessert, American Style.

Via Job’s Anger.