Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.
The tag 'Bitcoin' is associated with 20 posts.

Nazis Cash in With Bitcoin

After encoun­ter­ing prob­lems advanc­ing more con­ven­tion­al fund-rais­ing meth­ods, Nazi groups are pros­per­ing due to suc­cess­ful min­ing of Bit­coin. The most suc­cess­ful Nazi min­er of Bit­coin is Andrew “Weev” Aueren­heimer: ” . . . . One neo-Nazi stands above the rest in his bit­coin usage: Andrew ‘weev’ Auern­heimer, who’s received over $1 mil­lion in bit­coin, accord­ing to one report. Even though Auern­heimer has with­drawn rough­ly $118,620 from his bit­coin wal­let between late August and Wednes­day, his remain­ing bit­coin store has been replen­ish­ing his wealth through­out the recent bit­coin boom. . . .” It is not sur­pris­ing that Bit­coin should become a source of Nazi wealth, since its foun­da­tions are as far to the right as can be.


FTR #952 Be Afraid, Be VERY Afraid: Update on Technocratic Fascism

One of the illu­sions har­bored by many–in par­tic­u­lar, young peo­ple who have grown up with the inter­net, social net­works and mobile technology–sees dig­i­tal activ­i­ty as pri­vate. Noth­ing could be fur­ther from the truth. Even before the cyber-lib­er­tar­i­an poli­cies advo­cat­ed by indi­vid­u­als like John Per­ry Bar­low, Eddie Snow­den, Julian Assange and oth­ers became man­i­fest in the Trump admin­is­tra­tion’s were imple­ment­ed by the Trump admin­is­tra­tion and the GOP-con­trolled con­gress, dig­i­tal affairs were sub­ject to an extra­or­di­nary degree of manip­u­la­tion by a mul­ti­tude of inter­ests.

We begin our exam­i­na­tion of tech­no­crat­ic fas­cism with a look at the cor­po­rate foun­da­tion of Poke­mon Go. Infor­ma­tion about the back­ground of Poke­mon Go’s devel­op­er (Niantic) and the devel­op­ment of the firm is detailed in an arti­cle from Net­work World. In addi­tion to the for­mi­da­ble nature of the intel­li­gence agen­cies involved with gen­er­at­ing the cor­po­rate foun­da­tion of Poke­mon Go (Key­hole, Inc.; Niantic), note the unnerv­ing nature of the infor­ma­tion that can be gleaned from the Android phone of any­one who down­loads the “app.”

Poke­mon Go was seen as enhanc­ing the “Cool Japan Strat­e­gy” of Prime Min­is­ter Shin­zo Abe. The “Cool Japan Pro­mo­tion Fund” was imple­ment­ed by Abe (the grand­son of Nobo­suke Kishi, a Japan­ese war crim­i­nal who signed Japan’s dec­la­ra­tion of war against the U.S. and became the coun­try’s first post­war Prime Min­is­ter) to “raise the inter­na­tion­al pro­file of the country’s mass cul­ture.”

The Finance Min­is­ter of Japan is Taro Aso, one of the enthu­si­asts of Nazi polit­i­cal strat­e­gy high­light­ed below. The “Cool Japan pro­mo­tion Fund” would have been under his admin­is­tra­tion, with Tomo­mi Ina­da func­tion­ing as his admin­is­tra­tor for the pro­gram. Now serv­ing as Japan’s Defense Min­is­ter, Ina­da is anoth­er advo­cate of Nazi polit­i­cal strat­e­gy.

Next, we turn to anoth­er man­i­fes­ta­tion of Poke­mon Go. The “Alt-Right” (read “Nazi”) move­ment is using Poke­mon Go to recruit kids to the Nazi cause. Con­sid­er this against the back­ground of Niantic, the Cool Japan strat­e­gy and the pro-Nazi fig­ures involved with it. Con­sid­er this also, in con­junc­tion with the Naz­i­fied AI devel­oped and deployed by Robert and Rebekah Mer­cer, Steve Ban­non, Cam­bridge Ana­lyt­i­ca and the “Alt-Right” milieu with which they asso­ciate.

A recent “New York­er” arti­cle by Jane May­er con­cern­ing Robert Mer­cer keys some inter­est­ing thoughts about Mer­cer, Ban­non, the Alt-Right Wik­iLeaks and the Naz­i­fied AI we spoke of in FTR #‘s 948 and 949. In FTR #946, we not­ed this con­cate­na­tion’s cen­tral place in the Face­book con­stel­la­tion, a posi­tion that has posi­tioned them to act deci­sive­ly on the polit­i­cal land­scape.

We note sev­er­al things about the May­er piece:

She writes of Mer­cer’s sup­port for the Alt-Right–Mercer helps fund Ban­non’s Bre­it­bart: “. . . . In Feb­ru­ary, David Mager­man, a senior employ­ee at Renais­sance, spoke out about what he regards as Mercer’s wor­ri­some influ­ence. Mager­man, a Demo­c­rat who is a strong sup­port­er of Jew­ish caus­es, took par­tic­u­lar issue with Mercer’s empow­er­ment of the alt-right, which has includ­ed anti-Semit­ic and white-suprema­cist voic­es. . . .”

Mer­cer is racist, feel­ing that racism only exists in con­tem­po­rary black cul­ture: “. . . . Mer­cer, for his part, has argued that the Civ­il Rights Act, in 1964, was a major mis­take. Accord­ing to the one­time Renais­sance employ­ee, Mer­cer has assert­ed repeat­ed­ly that African-Amer­i­cans were bet­ter off eco­nom­i­cal­ly before the civ­il-rights move­ment. (Few schol­ars agree.) He has also said that the prob­lem of racism in Amer­i­ca is exag­ger­at­ed. The source said that, not long ago, he heard Mer­cer pro­claim that there are no white racists in Amer­i­ca today, only black racists. . . .”

His work at IBM was fund­ed in part by DARPA, strong­ly imply­ing that the DOD has applied some of the Mer­cer tech­nol­o­gy: “. . . . Yet, when I.B.M. failed to offer ade­quate sup­port for Mer­cer and Brown’s trans­la­tion project, they secured addi­tion­al fund­ing from DARPA, the secre­tive Pen­ta­gon pro­gram. Despite Mercer’s dis­dain for ‘big gov­ern­ment,’ this fund­ing was essen­tial to his ear­ly suc­cess. . . .”

In a 2012 anti-Oba­ma pro­pa­gan­da film fund­ed by Cit­i­zens Unit­ed, Steve Ban­non bor­rowed from “The Tri­umph of the Will: “. . . . Many of these [dis­il­lu­sioned Oba­ma] vot­ers became the cen­tral fig­ures of ‘The Hope & the Change,’ an anti-Oba­ma film that Ban­non and Cit­i­zens Unit­ed released dur­ing the 2012 Demo­c­ra­t­ic Nation­al Con­ven­tion. After Cad­dell saw the film, he point­ed out to Ban­non that its open­ing imi­tat­ed that of ‘Tri­umph of the Will,’ the 1935 ode to Hitler, made by the Nazi film­mak­er Leni Riefen­stahl. Ban­non laughed and said, ‘You’re the only one that caught it!’ In both films, a plane flies over a blight­ed land, as omi­nous music swells; then clouds in the sky part, augur­ing a new era. . . .”

Next, we return to the sub­ject of Bit­coin and cyber-lib­er­tar­i­an pol­i­cy. We have explored Bit­coin in a num­ber of programs–FTR #‘s 760, 764, 770 and 785.

An impor­tant new book by David Golum­bia sets forth the tech­no­crat­ic fas­cist pol­i­tics under­ly­ing Bit­coin. Known to vet­er­an listeners/readers as the author of an oft-quot­ed arti­cle deal­ing with tech­no­crat­ic fas­cism, Golum­bia has pub­lished a short, impor­tant book about the right-wing extrem­ism under­ly­ing Bit­coin. (Pro­grams on tech­no­crat­ic fas­cism include: FTR #‘s 851, 859, 866, 867.)

In an excerpt from the book, we see dis­turb­ing ele­ments of res­o­nance with the views of Stephen Ban­non and some of the philo­soph­i­cal influ­ences on him. Julius Evola, “Men­cius Mold­bug” and Ban­non him­self see our civ­i­liza­tion as in decline, at a crit­i­cal “turn­ing point,” and in need of being “blown up” (as Evola put it) or need­ing a “shock to the sys­tem.”

Note that the Cypher­punk’s Man­i­festo (pub­lished by the Elec­tron­ic Fron­tier Foun­da­tion) and the 1996 “Dec­la­ra­tion of the Inde­pen­dence of Cyber­space” writ­ten by the lib­er­tar­i­an activist, Grate­ful Dead lyri­cist, Elec­tron­ic Fron­tier Foun­da­tion founder John Per­ry Bar­low decry gov­ern­men­tal reg­u­la­tion of the dig­i­tal sys­tem. (EFF is a lead­ing “dig­i­tal rights” and tech­nol­o­gy indus­try advo­ca­cy orga­ni­za­tion.)

The libertarian/fascist eth­ic of the dig­i­tal world was artic­u­lat­ed by Bar­low.

Note how the “free­dom” advo­cat­ed by Bar­low et al has played out: the Trump admin­is­tra­tion (imple­ment­ing the desires of cor­po­rate Amer­i­ca) has “dereg­u­lat­ed” the inter­net. All this in the name of “free­dom.”

In FTR #854, we not­ed the curi­ous pro­fes­sion­al resume of Bar­low, con­tain­ing such dis­parate ele­ments as–lyricist for the Grate­ful Dead (“Far Out!”); Dick Cheney’s cam­paign man­ag­er (not so “Far Out!”); a vot­er for white supremacist/segregationist George Wal­lace in the 1968 Pres­i­den­tial cam­paign (very “Un-Far Out!”).

For our pur­pos­es, his most note­wor­thy pro­fes­sion­al under­tak­ing is his found­ing of the EFF–The Elec­tron­ic Fron­tier Foun­da­tion. A lead­ing osten­si­ble advo­cate for inter­net free­dom, the EFF has endorsed tech­nol­o­gy and embraced per­son­nel inex­tri­ca­bly linked with a CIA-derived milieu embod­ied in Radio Free Asi­a’s Open Tech­nol­o­gy Fund. (For those who are, under­stand­ably, sur­prised and/or skep­ti­cal, we dis­cussed this at length and in detail in FTR #‘s 891 and 895.)

Next, we present an arti­cle that brings to the fore some inter­est­ing ques­tions about Bar­low, the CIA and the very gen­e­sis of social media.

We offer Ms. Sun­der­son­’s obser­va­tions, stress­ing that Bar­low’s fore­shad­ow­ing of the com­mu­ni­ca­tion func­tions inher­ent in social media and his pres­ence at CIA head­quar­ters (by invi­ta­tion!) sug­gest that Bar­low not only has strong ties to CIA but may have been involved in the con­cep­tu­al gen­e­sis that spawned CIA-con­nect­ed enti­ties such as Face­book.

In FTR #951, we observed that Richard B. Spencer, one of Trump’s Nazi back­ers, has begun a web­site with Swedish Alt-Righter Daniel Friberg, part of the Swedish fas­cist milieu to which Carl Lund­strom belongs. In FTR #732 (among oth­er pro­grams), we not­ed that it was Lund­strom who financed the Pirate Bay web­site, on which Wik­iLeaks held forth for quite some time. In FTR #745, we doc­u­ment­ed that top Assange aide and Holo­caust-denier Joran Jer­mas (aka “Israel Shamir”) arranged the Lundstrom/WikiLeaks liai­son. (Jer­mas han­dles Wik­iLeaks Russ­ian oper­a­tions, a point of inter­est in the wake of the 2016 cam­paign.)

It is a good bet that Lundstrom/Pirate Bay/WikiLeaks et al were data min­ing the many peo­ple who vis­it­ed the Wik­iLeaks site.

Might Lundstrom/Jermas/Assange et al have shared the volu­mi­nous data they may well have mined with Mercer/Cambridge Analytica/Bannon’s Naz­i­fied AI?

We con­clude with recap of Microsoft researcher Kate Craw­ford’s obser­va­tions at the SXSW event. Craw­ford gave a speech about her work titled “Dark Days: AI and the Rise of Fas­cism,” the pre­sen­ta­tion high­light­ed the social impact of machine learn­ing and large-scale data sys­tems. The take home mes­sage? By del­e­gat­ing pow­ers to Bid Data-dri­ven AIs, those AIs could become fascist’s dream: Incred­i­ble pow­er over the lives of oth­ers with min­i­mal account­abil­i­ty: ” . . . .‘This is a fascist’s dream,’ she said. ‘Pow­er with­out account­abil­i­ty.’ . . . .”

We reit­er­ate, in clos­ing, that ” . . . . Palan­tir is build­ing an intel­li­gence sys­tem to assist Don­ald Trump in deport­ing immi­grants. . . .”

In FTR #757 we not­ed that Palan­tir is a firm dom­i­nat­ed by Peter Thiel, a main backer of Don­ald Trump.

Pro­gram High­lights Include: Wik­iLeaks’ con­tin­ued prop­a­ga­tion of Alt-Right style Anti-Semit­ic pro­pa­gan­da: ” . . . . Now it is the dar­ling of the alt-right, reveal­ing hacked emails seem­ing­ly to influ­ence a pres­i­den­tial con­test, claim­ing the US elec­tion is ‘rigged.’ and descend­ing into con­spir­a­cy. Just this week on Twit­ter, it described the deaths by nat­ur­al caus­es of two of its sup­port­ers as a ‘bloody year for Wik­iLeaks.’ and warned of media out­lets ‘con­trolled by’ mem­bers of the Roth­schild fam­i­ly – a com­mon anti-Semit­ic trope. . . .”; assess­ing all of the data-min­ing poten­tial (cer­tain­ty) of Wik­iLeaks, Poke­mon Go and the (per­haps) Bar­low-inspired Social Media world against the back­ground of the Mercer/Bannon/Cambridge ana­lyt­i­ca Naz­i­fied AI.


“The Politics of Bitcoin: Software as Right-Wing Extremism” by David Golumbia

In pre­vi­ous pro­grams, we have high­light­ed tech­no­crat­ic fas­cism, embod­ied in a text excerpt­ed from an excel­lent arti­cle by David Golum­bia. In oth­er pro­grams, we have detailed the anarcho/fascist pol­i­tics under­ly­ing Bit­coin. Now, Mr. Golum­bia has pub­lished a book about Bit­coin, as excel­lent as it is short (77 pages of text.) It should be not­ed that the apoc­a­lyp­tic, dystopi­an view of our civ­i­liza­tion epit­o­mized by the Bit­coin crowd is embraced by Steve Ban­non and the philo­soph­i­cal influ­ences on him.


Is Comey Destabilizing the Democratic Party for the GOP?

A Mitt Rom­ney backer and for­mer George W. Bush Jus­tice Depart­ment staffer, James Comey is tak­ing actions that are desta­bi­liz­ing both the Oba­ma admin­is­tra­tion and the Clin­ton can­di­da­cy. All of the con­tents of this web­site as of 12/19/2014–Dave Emory’s 35+ years of research and broadcasting–as well as hours of video­taped lec­tures are avail­able on a 32GB flash dri­ve. Dave offers his pro­grams and arti­cles for free–your sup­port is very much appre­ci­at­ed.


School Shootings Are Technologically Obsolete

In past pro­grams, we have cov­ered school shoot­ings, one of the most high pro­file forms of may­hem in our benight­ed soci­ety. With the growth of high-tech, they have now become tech­no­log­i­cal­ly obsolete–school ter­ror­ism may become increas­ingly pop­u­lar as anony­mous com­mu­ni­ca­tion tech­nolo­gies and anony­mous pay­ment sys­tems like Bit­coin con­tinue to roll out. The psy­cho­log­i­cal effect of hav­ing chil­dren ter­ror­ized in this man­ner should not be under­es­ti­mat­ed. It will dri­ve peo­ple into the arms of fas­cism, as they cry out for “some­one to do SOMETHING! All of the con­tents of this web­site as of 12/19/2014–Dave Emory’s 35+ years of research and broadcasting–as well as hours of video­taped lec­tures are avail­able on a 32GB flash dri­ve. Dave offers his pro­grams and arti­cles for free–your sup­port is very much appre­ci­at­ed.


FTR #867 Because They Can, Part 3: Fireside Rant about Technocratic Fascism as “Cyber-Crowleyism”

Con­tin­u­ing dis­cus­sion from FTR #866, we devel­op var­i­ous man­i­fes­ta­tions of lib­er­tar­i­an, tech­no­crat­ic fas­cism. Cel­e­brat­ed by Sil­i­con Val­ley exec­u­tives and ele­vat­ed to pow­er (in part), by EBay chief Pierre Omid­yar, Naren­dra Mod­i’s Hin­du nationalist/fascist gov­ern­ment has been sup­press­ing free speech, laud­ing Mahat­ma Gand­hi’s killer as a patri­ot, mur­der­ing crit­ics and turn­ing a blind eye to lethal mob vio­lence direct­ed against Mus­lims for alleged­ly slaugh­ter­ing cows. Cap­i­tal­iz­ing on Snow­den’s activ­i­ties, the very finan­cial insti­tu­tions that pre­cip­i­tat­ed the 2008 finan­cial col­lapse are employ­ing a secure, end-to-end encryp­tion mes­sag­ing sys­tem that will enable them to evade reg­u­la­to­ry scruti­ny. The lais­sez-faire, cor­po­ratist eco­nom­ic phi­los­o­phy embraced by Modi is at one with the val­ues of Edward Snow­den, Julian Assange, the Tea Par­ty and the GOP as a whole, the advo­cates of Bit­coin, and the pirates of Wall Street. Pro­gram High­lights Include: a com­par­i­son of the social philoso­phies of Assange and Snow­den with those of the SS; review of Mod­i’s move to under­mine Indi­a’s child labor laws; review of the fright­en­ing pos­si­bil­i­ties of “smart con­tracts;” review of Bit­coin as “cyber-off­shoring.”


FTR #866 Because They Can, Part 2: More about Technocratic Fascism

Although high-tech can be an enlight­en­ing, enter­tain­ing devel­op­ment offer­ing remark­able pos­si­bil­i­ties for improv­ing human exis­tence, there exists anoth­er, sin­is­ter poten­tial. Many big tech firms and coders of var­i­ous types don’t play well with others–they embody anoth­er eth­ic: ” . . . . [they are] telling us that coders don’t just have good things to con­tribute to the polit­i­cal world, but that the polit­i­cal world is theirs to do with what they want, and the rest of us should stay out of it. . . .” Poten­tial­ly real­iz­ing the wet dream of pow­er­ful eco­nom­ic elites, cryp­to-cur­ren­cies like Bit­coin are seen as cir­cum­vent­ing the abil­i­ty of nation states to tax in what might be termed as “cyber-off­shoring.” Such a devel­op­ment would spell doom for nation-states. Major finan­cial firms impli­cat­ed in the crash of 2008 have cir­cum­vent­ed reg­u­la­tors with their end-to-end encryp­tion ser­vice called “sym­pho­ny.” Ethereum CEO Gavin Wood enthus­es about the pos­si­bil­i­ties of smart-con­tracts: ” . . . illic­it activ­ity enabled by Ethereum could change the world, he says. . . .” Pro­gram High­lights Include: Tar­get stores’ intro­duc­tion of robot work­ers after employ­ees vot­ed to union­ize; Hin­du fas­cist Naren­dra Mod­i’s court­ing of Sil­i­con Val­ley at the same time as he works to under­mine Indi­a’s child labor laws; Ethereum’s tech­nol­o­gy enabling: the assas­si­na­tion of polit­i­cal lead­ers, the van­dal­iz­ing of web­sites, the sub­ver­sion of any form of state reg­u­la­tion and the tech­no­log­i­cal replace­ment of lawyers and oth­er admin­is­tra­tors. Low-wage work­ers aren’t the only ones fac­ing replace­ment by dig­i­tal tech­nol­o­gy.


FTR #859 Because They Can: Update on Technocratic Fascism

Albert Ein­stein said of the inven­tion of the atom­ic bomb: “Every­thing has changed but our way of think­ing.” We feel that oth­er, more recent devel­op­ments in the world of Big Tech war­rant the same type of warn­ing. Remark­able devel­op­ments in the world of Big Tech and Big Data are empow­er­ing human beings in ways that were incon­ceiv­able even a short time ago. There has been an expo­nen­tial increase in the poten­tial for tech­nocrats to con­trol (or destroy) the lives of mil­lions of peo­ple. At root, how­ev­er, the human race remains the same bunch of femur-crack­ing, mar­row-suck­ing nean­derthals we have always been. Tech-savvy ana­lysts can iden­ti­fy anony­mous cred­it users and pre­dict their behav­ior with just a small amount of data. At the same time, Face­book has devel­oped an app that will per­mit banks to iden­ti­fy the cred­it-wor­thi­ness of some­one’s friends, poten­tial­ly deny­ing the user a loan because of their friends! A new tech wrin­kle will facil­i­tate the use of Bit­coin to assas­si­nate pub­lic fig­ures and oth­ers, at the same time as mak­ing the jobs of attor­neys and oth­ers obso­lete, to an extent. The “inter­net of things” threat­ens to open up entire­ly new vis­tas for “Tech abuse.” Pro­gram High­lights Include: the Sym­pho­ny mes­sag­ing ser­vice, fea­tur­ing end-to-end encryp­tion that may pre­vent reg­u­la­tors from ade­quate­ly over­see­ing the oper­a­tions of finan­cial insti­tu­tions; the use of Bit­coin to per­mit hack­ers to extort users of the Ash­ley Madi­son cheaters web­site; review of the essence of tech­no­crat­ic fas­cism: ” . . . . Hack­ers (“civic,” “eth­i­cal,” “white” and “black” hat alike), hack­tivists, Wik­iLeaks fans [and Julian Assange et al–D. E.], Anony­mous “mem­bers,” even Edward Snow­den him­self walk hand-in-hand with Face­book and Google in telling us that coders don’t just have good things to con­tribute to the polit­i­cal world, but that the polit­i­cal world is theirs to do with what they want, and the rest of us should stay out of it . . .”


The Big Bitcoin Bet, Part 2: Big Money to Buy Bitcoin, and Other Bad Ideas

2014 could have been bet­ter for Bit­coin. After peak­ing near $1100 in Decem­ber 2013, Bit­coin is cur­rent­ly under $250. 2014 was not a good year for Bit­coin.

But that does­n’t mean 2015 has to be the same. And if a slew of recent announce­ment involv­ing some very big investors are any indi­ca­tion of what to expect, the main­stream­ing Bit­coin is about to get a big boost. But that boost could come with a big price too. All those “micro­trans­ac­tions” of as lit­tle as 0.000000001 of one bit­coin (BTC) that much of the Bit­coin com­mu­ni­ty hates so much is pre­cise­ly what these deep pock­et­ed inter­ests are plan­ning on pro­mot­ing in a big way. And in order to make it all hap­pen, they might have to become some of the biggest bit­coin min­ers around too. And that means the future of Bit­coin is increas­ing in the hands of ‘The Man’. Also, the micro­trans­ac­tions might be used to mon­e­tize how we access the web. And how the Inter­net of Things spies on us. It does­n’t actu­al­ly sound very fun.


Cyber-Terrorists Holding Detroit Database Hostage, Demanding Ransom of 2,000 Bitcoins

High­light­ing the per­ils of wiki­cul­ture and under­scor­ing the util­i­ty of Bit­coin for var­i­ous types of crim­i­nal activ­i­ty, we note that cyber­at­tack­ers have frozen a key data­base for bank­rupt­cy-afflict­ed Detroit. In return, they are demand­ing 2,000 Bit­coins as ransom–no doubt because of the rel­a­tive­ly opaque and untrace­able nature of the dig­i­tal cur­ren­cy. All of the con­tents of this web­site as of 10/2/2014–Dave Emory’s 35+ years of research and broadcasting–as well as hours of video­taped lec­tures are avail­able on a 32GB flash dri­ve.


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