Ransomware attacks have generally been used to hit individuals, but recent months have seen the attacks evolve and lock down files at a much larger scale. Several instances of hospitals and healthcare providers being hit have created considerable scare, while several universities have also been locked out of their extensive databases by the cryptoviruses. In total, the extortion tactics are expected to cost nearly $1 billion in losses to businesses and organizations going forward according to the FBI.
The tech-aloofness of the two nominees marks a sharp break from President Barack Obama, who fought to keep a mobile phone when he entered the White House, spends downtime surfing his iPad and wrote about his awe at the power of the internet in his 2006 book “The Audacity of Hope.” That raises the prospect that the next occupant of the Oval Office — charged with making decisions on issues like encryption, the fight against a social-media savvy Islamic State, and the growing automation of the American economy — will be less familiar with consumer technologies than the average citizens who use them.
“These are two candidates who don’t have their hands on the technology, and that’s unfortunate, because without that it’s difficult to understand this stuff on a deeper, more visceral level,” said Peter Leyden, a futurist and former managing editor of Wired who was an early Obama backer in Silicon Valley.
President Barack Obama asked for $1.9 billion to fund the Zika response back in February. The Senate eventually passed a bipartisan measure in May that would have provided $1.1 billion. But that measure differed from a version taken up in the House, and Republicans ultimately modified the bill to add provisions targeting Planned Parenthood, preserving the Confederate flag, taking money from Obamacare and weakening the Clean Water Act regarding pesticides.
Democrats objected to the added riders and voted against the bill just before Congress left, saying that Republicans should ditch the ideological additions and just use the original Senate bill that had gotten 89 “yes” votes. Republicans declined.
Successful politicians don’t choose political narratives at random. They understand that voters’ beliefs about the state of the nation are inevitably shaped by their life experiences and the ideological and cultural lenses through which they interpret them. That was as true in the 1980s as it is today. Consider a blue-collar worker who moved from a devastated Rust Belt town to a bustling Sun Belt suburb in 1984, just as the local economy was starting to boom. To this young woman, the idea that it was “Morning in America” felt exactly right. She had chosen to leave her past behind, and all the union bosses and tax-and-spend liberal politicians that came with it. Reagan’s individualistic ethos resonated with her experience, and it made her feel like the author of her own life.
But what of the blue-collar worker who remained in that same Rust Belt town and who lived through the nightmare of deindustrialization? What if this other woman saw friends lose their jobs and their homes, and what if she herself had to turn to food stamps to keep her family afloat? It’s easy to imagine her scoffing at Reagan’s rhetoric and feeling drawn to darker rhetoric. Democrats in the Reagan era didn’t sound downbeat and nostalgic because they hated America, regardless of what their Republican critics might have claimed. They came across as pessimistic because they wanted to craft messages that resonated with their voters, many of whom felt their world was crumbling around them.
It has taken this country a long time to come to the realization that prescription drug abuse is a crisis that cuts across class and race. Decades of normalization allowed a Caucasian, middle-upper class, male ex-marine to spend four years feeding an increasingly destabilizing drug habit and suffering virtually no social or economic consequences for it. The fact that his drug use was not directly responsible for the tower shooting does not render its existence irrelevant. Ignoring this side of Whitman’s life only helps perpetuate the myth, just now slowly beginning to die, that drug abuse is primarily a problem for minority communities and the poor.
Thus, Trump is a Frankensteinian monster, created by Republican elites who thought they could pander to their reactionary base indefinitely while serving Wall Street and corporate America in Washington. Trump is a demagogue, of course, and it’s hard to tell what he truly believes in and what he says to rile up resentful, paranoid and bigoted Americans. But it’s clear what his movement — let’s call it Trumpism — is and what it isn’t.
Trumpism is not a conservative ideology or movement, nor is it rooted in conservative principles. Its adherents do not want to safeguard traditional institutions or preserve the status quo; rather, they strive for its complete destruction. Reporter James Kirchick provided an interesting insight into the mind of a typical Trumpets when he asked prominent Trump supporter and writer Milo Yiannopolous what actual Trump policies he favors, to which the writer replied that Trump supporters don’t care about policies, “They [just] want to burn everything down.” This is nihilism, not conservatism.
Just like Bill and just like Obama, Hilary figures we liberals will finally in the end hold our nose and vote for her. So she selects Tim Kaine to show us who’s the realist, who’s the boss, who’s running this show. It might not work this time. jp
“This kind of behaviour is what we call ‘normalisation of violence against women’ and it is really, really scary and damaging,” she wrote. “… Every time you ‘playfully’ tell a woman to get back in the kitchen, every time you smack a girl on the bum because it’s funny, every time you make a joke about rape, YOU are contributing to a society where unfortunately women are not safe.”
Most of all, Trump voters want respect. They want respect for their long hours of work that risks their bodies, for the hands caught in vices, backs wrenched by weights, and knees torn. They want respect because they are doing dangerous work, but their pay has been flat for decades.
They want respect because they haven’t just lost economically, but also socially. When they turn on the TV, they see their way of life being mocked and made fun of as nothing but uneducated white trash.
With Trump, they are finding someone who gives them respect. He talks their language, addresses their concerns. Sometimes it is celebrating what defines their neighborhood, what they in Parma have in common: being white. They and Trump are playing in dangerous territory, with the need for respect tipping into misplaced revenge.