New Scandal for US: Republicans Asked Tehran to Keep US Prisoners (including Navy and Marines) in Jail Until Presidential Elections | Veterans Today

If this is true, and so far there is no independent confirmation, it would not be the first time that Republicans have tried to convince Iranians to continue holding our hostages for partisan reasons.

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iran’s top security official Rear Admiral Ali Shamkhani disclosed on Thursday that the US Republicans had demanded Tehran to suspend the January prisoners’ swap deal with Washington until the presidential elections in the US.

“The US Republicans sent a message to Tehran, demanding us not to release the American spies until the presidential race starts in the US,” Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani said on Thursday.

“However, we did release the US prisoners in an independent decision,” he continued.

Source: New Scandal for US: Republicans Asked Tehran to Keep US Prisoners (including Navy and Marines) in Jail Until Presidential Elections | Veterans Today

“Intelligent people know that the empire is on the downhill”: A veteran CIA agent spills the goods on the Deep State and our foreign policy nightmares –

I first heard Ray McGovern speak on a country road in the New England hills. This was courtesy of the admirably dedicated David Barsamian, who broadcast one of McGovern’s talks on Alternative Radio in late-2013. Reception up here being spotty, I pulled over and sat watching the autumn clouds drift by for the full hour McGovern stood at the podium of a Methodist church in Seattle. I was rapt.

What a lost pleasure it is in our indispensable nation to be in the presence of someone who thinks, acts and speaks out of conscience and conviction. Even better, these were precisely McGovern’s topics that day three years back: The necessity of careful thought, of honoring one’s inner voice, of acting out of an idea of what is right without regard to success or failure, the win-or-lose of life. One way or another, these themes run through everything he has to say, I have since discovered. At an inner-city church in Washington, McGovern teaches a course he calls “The Morality of Whistleblowing.”

Source: “Intelligent people know that the empire is on the downhill”: A veteran CIA agent spills the goods on the Deep State and our foreign policy nightmares –

Calling all Time Warner customers to unite against its dreadful customer service | News & Observer

Former Raleigh City Councilor Barlow Herget wrote to the N&O about his abysmal recent experience at the Time Warner Cable office.

Mr. Herget asks if the City Council could change the law to go back to local control of cable TV franchises. Local control went out the window in 2005 when a group of “business-friendly” Democrats in the state legislature successfully passed the “state franchise for cable television” bill into law for their friends at Time Warner Cable. This stripped control of cable franchises from city and county governments and placed it in the hands of the state. It’s easier to pay off state leaderss rather than local leaders, it seems.

I predicted this would happen back in 2006 and time has proven me correct. I just wish I could’ve convinced more state legislators at the time.

I recently had the dreadful occasion to visit Time Warner’s office in Raleigh. We needed a “box” for a new television. It was a hot 95 degrees outside, and inside the Atlantic Avenue office, there were 35 to 40 people waiting, including one crying baby.

The room was the size of a typical school class. We took a number and asked how long we should expect to wait. Thirty minutes. We luckily found two chairs together and sat down.My fellow subscribers were lined along the walls, a few standing, more coming in. Mostly patient, the steam was starting to rise in some of these customers. There was an inane game show on a big screen TV that a few were watching.

One lady came in carrying a big box, saw the crowd and asked how long she had to wait. Told 30 minutes, she declared she was on her lunch break and, after waiting 10 minutes, departed, muttering, “Some people have to work for a living,”

Source: Calling all Time Warner customers to unite against its dreadful customer service | News & Observer attempts to install malware

This morning, my wife returned to her Google Chrome web browser to see the following tab had been opened: attempts to install a fake Adobe Flash player attempts to install a fake Adobe Flash player

The text reads:

WARNING: Your Adobe Flash Player version is out of date. Your computer is prone to malware attacks! Please update the latest Flash Player version

At the bottom of the page is this:

About | End User License Agreement | Contact | Privacy | Terms of service | Download Manager | How to Uninstall

By downloading, you accept our Terms of use and Privacy Policy. This free download is done via download manager which may offer other applications you can decline or uninstall. This site and the download manager have no relationship with the author. Software may also be available for free from the original author’s site. © 2016 | All Rights Reserved.

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Amazon’s customer service backdoor — Medium

Everything you do to secure your Amazon account Customer Service can undo in a heartbeat. A scary tale of how easily Amazon’s customer service can be socially engineered.

As a security conscious user who follows the best practices like: using unique passwords, 2FA, only using a secure computer and being able to spot phishing attacks from a mile away, I would have thought my accounts and details would be be pretty safe? Wrong.

Because when someone has gone after me, it all goes for nothing. That’s because most systems come with a backdoor, customer support. In this post I’m going to focus on the most grievous offender:

Source: Amazon’s customer service backdoor — Medium

Charles with the Obamacare Open Enrollment Center

Last week I got this scam call in on my mobile number. The Caller ID said 347-215-3027 which, as I know from my years of telemarketing scam sleuthing, is almost certainly faked. Calls also come from 813-365-3765 and possibly others.

Here’s the recorded message that was left, made to sound spontaneous. People all over the country have gotten the very same message:

Yeah, hi. This is Charles, and I’m calling from the Obamacare Open Enrollment Center in your … uh … local neighborhood here … um I have your number here on my desk to give you a call … uh … basically … uh … let me see here … uh, the number … let me see … E477 that’s your registration number for the, uh … Obamacare … uh … insurance, so … just go ahead and give me a call back I want to go over a few things with you to get you set up so you don’t have any tax implications. You can call me DIRECT at 888-575-1448, again my number is 888-575-1448. Thank you!

I’ll have an audio clip to post later today.

Iran’s return of American sailors

Riverine Command Boat (RCB)

Riverine Command Boat (RCB)

Let me start off by saying that last week wasn’t my Navy’s finest hour. When news came in Thursday night that ten U.S. Navy sailors had “drifted into Iran territorial waters” and had been detained, there was a sense of deja-vu. I thought about the collision in 2001 between a reckless Chinese fighter pilot and a Navy EP-3 surveillance plane. Known as the Hainan Island Incident, 24 sailors were detained for eleven days, interrogated at all times of day and night. The incident was George W. Bush’s first international crisis and it wasn’t clear things would be resolved amicably.

The Navy tends to avoid entering unfriendly waters (well … most of the time!). The Persian Gulf (or Arabian Gulf as the USN refers to it) is tiny as far as bodies of water go. Our sailors are well aware of who occupies the eastern shore of the Gulf and know to steer clear of it. That doesn’t mean that encounters between Iranians and Americans don’t still take place. I vividly recall how surreal it was to lock eyes with curious Iranian ferry passengers as they motored slowly by my ship once in the Gulf. It was clear at that moment how ridiculous the bluster of our respective governments was.
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