Category Archives: Things To Think About

Pulse Detected (Again)

Hello WordPress,

It’s been awhile and I’d like to start off by apologizing for my lack of blogging lately. I’d also like to thank the steady stream of readers I get on a daily basis, you’re awesome for liking my craziness. Within the next few days I plan on updating all of you with what’s been going on and what’s to come. Hopefully I haven’t lost my toilet reading humor. I love you all.

-Ian

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Code Name: Stellarwind

-Hunted-

     Let’s step back a few years before Edward Snowden became the United States of Americas most wanted man. Stellarwind was created by the NSA (Nation Security Agency) just after 9/11. The project was approved by President Bush and was exposed and revealed to the New York Times by Thomas Tamm in 2008. It was a foundation that later evolved into new and different legal structures that allowed Bush and Obama to create more programs and expand their reach.
The program allows for data mining massive databases of American citizens which included emails, financial transactions, telephone conversations, and internet activity. Several internal disputes inside the U.S. Justice Department about the program over the fact that it didn’t just collect date on targets of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act but mass quantities of people as well.

“…the Stellarwind cases were referred to by FBI agents as “pizza cases” because many seemingly suspicious cases turned out to be food takeout orders. According to then-FBI Director Robert Mueller, approximately 99% of the cases led nowhere…”

-Wikipedia

     Further reading into justifications as to why the program was important, I realized that is seemed as if the 9/11 attacks was used as the final push for this program to be in place. Now that the people of the United States had an enemy on its own soil that organized the attacks right here in the home land, reasons to have a program that collected data on persons of interest seemed like a good idea to the American people. Little did they know, Stellarwind would be used to collect data on just about everyone. We were all persons of interests and it was without warrants.

-How Strange, Innocence-

      “…In 2004, the head of the Office of Legal Counsel, Jack Landman Goldsmith, wrote at least two legal memos authorizing the program, “We conclude only that when the nation has been thrust into an armed conflict by a foreign attack on the United States and the president determines in his role as commander in chief . . . that it is essential for defense against a further foreign attack to use the [wiretapping] capabilities of the [National Security Agency] within the United States, he has inherent constitutional authority” to order warrantless wiretapping — “an authority that Congress cannot curtail,” Goldsmith wrote in a 108-page memo dated May 6, 2004. In March 2004, the OLC concluded the e-mail program was not legal, and then-Acting Attorney General James Comey refused to reauthorize it…”

-Wikipedia

Thomas Tamm was born in 1952 and received his education from Brown University. He is a former attorney for the U.S. Department of Justice and is a known whistleblower. Tipped off by Tamm,  the New York Times released and article on December 16, 2005, exposing Stellarwind. A little over a year later, the FBI raided Tamms house and in 2011, the Justice Department dropped all charges against Tamm and did not file charges.

     Today, Stellarwind is in full force with several programs grown off of it’s foundation. NSA still collects data on the people of the United States as well as working together with several other European countries.

Sources:
Wikipedia, Google

One Nation, Under Surveillance

     I pledge allegiance, to the flag, of the United States of America. And to the republic for which it stands, one nation, under surveillance, always divided, for liberty and justice for all.

Waking Up

It’s five o’clock in the morning. My alarm fades in slowly with the song “Waking Up” by Explosions In The Sky. I usually wake up this early to take my wife to work so it’s nothing out of the ordinary. She’s a hard worker. I admire that.

The morning is quiet. I like it.

It’s always quiet this early. It’s quiet because our little world hasn’t started up yet. The rest of the world has, but not ours. I like to absorb the quiet after dropping my wife off. The cats usually sleep in and the dogs tend to hop right back on the bed and pass out. I start my morning by making myself a spam omelette and a coffee with three sugars. I don’t add much creamer now days, I guess I’ve out grown it.

After my meal, I take my coffee and sit down at my desk. I call it the command center. It’s the central processor of my stronghold. My “Jarvis”.

“Good morning sir”

I say to myself out loud in a British “Jarvis” voice as my desktop comes to life. By now the faint blue daylight begins to filter over the mountain view that greets me every morning. I open my web browser and log into my usual social medias. Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, & WordPress.

I am plugged in.

A Storm Is Coming

The news feed. A constantly evolving digital wave of opinions, ideas, beliefs, products, pictures, and sometimes pointless nonsense. The list goes on. It’s where our lives are written out and recorded in real time. It’s brilliant and truly wonderful.

It’s also a war zone.

A battlefield with multiple factions shelling the living shit out of each other day and night.

The quiet is over.

#Trump2016, #feelthebern, #blacklivesmatter, #hillary2016, #GOPdebate. Hashtags thrown around like hand grenades. Alliances are formed and relationships destroyed as easy as “unfriend”. You’re in the trenches and you’re as powerful as ever because you’re behind a keyboard. You no longer have to share an opinion face to face. You’re safe and secure because you’re in the matrix. Memes are like propaganda bombs filled with false or exaggerated facts about opposing parties but good job bro, really stuck it to em with that one!

We’re all guilty of it really. It’s all part of it. But I find it hard to take a side in all this. I mean I have my beliefs and I have my reasons for who I will vote for but I can’t seem to label it. You can’t claim to be a Republican anymore without being labeled a racist or bigot. You can’t claim to be a Democrat without being labeled a lazy liberal. You can’t fly a Tea Party flag without being called a tea bagger.

When did we lose ourselves? When did we go from a melting pot to a pot of water with individual groups of oil floating around? There’s so many groups and labels that we’ve started to suffocate in it all. We’ve lost sight of who the true enemy is and we are too busy climbing on top of one another as we grasp for air and try to soak up the lime light even if it’s for a quick second. It’s exhausting and like I said before….we’ve looked away from the true enemy and they are reaping all the benefits from it.

Human Qualities

Edward Snowden.

He was born on June 21st, 1983 in Elizabeth City, North Carolina. He is a former CIA employee as well as a former employee for Booz Allen Hamilton which is a company contracted by the NSA. He’s widely known for the **theft of government property, unauthorized communication of national defense information, and willful communication of classified intelligence to an unauthorized person”.

** source via wikipedia

Recently I read Glenn Greenwalds book “No Place Left To Hide” which covers what happened when Snowden contacted Greenwald about the documents he had obtained.

“…Opposition to government invasion of privacy was a major factor in the establishment of the United States itself, as American colonists protested laws that let British officials ransack at will any home they wished…”

Greenwald said.

The Fourth Amendment:

“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the person’s or things to be seized.”

As Greenwald said,

“It was intended, above all, to abolish forever in America the power of the government to subject its citizens to generalized, suspicionless surveillance.”

I also read that in the mid-nineteenth century, British government began opening its citizens mail, due to the development of rail ways and rapid delivery, which caused a major scandal in the UK. By the mid 1970s, Frank Church investigated the FBI and found that they had labeled a half a million US citizens as potential “subversives” and had spied on people based on their political affiliations.

Snowden handed documents over to Greenwald providing information about the US government partnering with providers, allowing them to sift through emails, messages, video chats, phone calls, voicemails and other means of communication. The data collected is then stored for access whenever they wanted. These major providers include; Microsoft, Google, Yahoo!, Facebook, Paltalk, Youtube, Skype, AOL, and Apple. This was a project called PRISM, which allows NSA to collect data directly from servers.

PRISM

Actual leaked NSA slide provided by Edward Snowden. NOFORN at the bottom right means no foreign governments/companies can see this slide.

Do you feel comfortable with that? If you are, you’ve already lost.

Some other things Snowden discovered was the governments ability to activate your phone’s microphone and camera capabilities even if it was connected to the internet or not. Greenwald met Snowden in Hong Kong along with two other reporters. They composed articles and stories for their publisher to release to the world. The story caught like a wild fire. The government has never denied the accusations.

A Song of Our Fathers

To say this story is mere conspiracy theory is only, to me, words used by those in denial. Civil liberties groups, Wikipedia, and many more have filed lawsuits against the NSA. That list can be found here. Edward Snowden found something terribly wrong with our government and felt that it was time the people finally had proof that they are watched, spied on, recorded and documented. Our government states that it’s for the greater good of the country. To help catch those who plot and plan to destroy our way of life. So once again I ask you, are you comfortable with this? If you have nothing to hide, them you have nothing to fear right? You have already lost.

Greenwald said..

“Governments around the world have made vigorous attempts to train citizens to disdain their own privacy. A litany of now-familiar platitudes has convinced people to tolerate sever encroachments into their private realm; so successful are these justifications that many people applaud as the authorities collect vast amounts of data about what they say, read, buy and do-and with whom”

If you are okay with it, then accept and admit that you are submissive. Submission, to me, is an act of something as low, if not lower than that of something on a microbial level. Yes it is true that there is nothing we can do about it, verbally anyway. This very article will be flagged and possibly looked at given the very contents contained in it, even though it is not even scratching the surface. I did that so you could research yourself and learn a bit.

Trembling Hands

While we squabble about, lobbing verbal abuses towards opposing parties on the constant stream of our news feeds that’s ever flowing. I hope one day the rest of us come to light that we divide ourselves because we let them. We are doing exactly what they want us to do and that is to remain as separate little twigs. A single twig is weak, but a bundle of twigs is strong. We are not a bundle. I fear we are broken and will be for some time. We vote for celebrities, not politicians. We form opinions off of trending topics without actually doing research and when some do research, they read one side of the story. We read media headlines that dice up, alter, and change what’s said to what they want you to read because they know you’ll only read the headline anyway. We watch as candidates dig up dirt on one another and bash each other in their debates. It’s a shame we’ve lost our ability to recognize when something isn’t right. That we now think rebellion on a violent level is an act of terrorism. That we are growing comfortable of the thought of being unarmed. That it’s okay for them to search our lives without reason. We scare too easily. We have weakened. I won’t give up on the country, but to be honest I feel that electing someone,no matter who it is, wont change anything on the grand scale that needs to happen.

flag

Sources I used for this mini article were:

Wikipedia, Google, and the book “No Place Left To Hide” by Glenn Greenwald
Also check out the preview for Oliver Stones ‘Snowden’

Living Life Alaskan

alaska-04

Alaska.

She’s our home. Our roots. Our foundation.

You’ll have to excuse me for my writing skills, for they are quite unsuitable for nothing more than the blog of a C student.

To most, Alaska is unknown and hardly looked at as a place one would want to live. Most people I’ve run into that have never been to Alaska think it’s located in the Gulf of Mexico (I’m kidding). But what makes those who have lived here for some time so unique? What are the first few words that come to mind when you think of yourself as ‘Alaskan’?

The first few words that come to my mind is “tough as nails”. Because in all reality, we truly are. We are a special kind of breed that separates us from the norm. Anyone who has an Alaskan friend would easily say they were “different”. We are different. We are taught to adapt, evolve, and overcome most situations in our every day Alaskan life. You have to, or you wont make it. I’ve traveled to many places and have experienced complete polar opposites of Alaska. 98% of everyone I have met outside of Alaska usually is fascinated with where I am from. This fascination usually comes after a shocked, slightly nauseated, yet curious look on their face. Yes I am from Alaska, the 49th (out of 50…Hey some folks don’t know that!) and largest state in the United States of America. With a population of 736,732, Alaska is 663,300 square miles of complete awesomeness.

Every Alaska can agree that we are bombarded with the same kind of questions every time we meet a new person in the lower 48. Some of the usual questions are; “is it always cold there?”, “have you seen a penguin?”, “is it night time all the time?”, “do you live in an igloo?”, “do you have power?”, “do you have internet?”, “do you use cars?”. The list can go on and some of those aren’t even the bad ones. Most of us have gotten use to the onslaught of bad questions and we normally are happy to answer each one with smiles and laughter.

Now most people would think that due to our smaller towns and cities, we are quite a small world. But from all my travels and cities I’ve been to, it really seems the opposite. Being Alaskan, we have to travel what city folk would call “a long way” to get to places. I live in Wasilla. Which means If I wanted to go to the mall, it would be a good 45 minute to an hour drive. We do it so often and so many things are 1-3 hours away that it becomes normal for us. A simple three or four hour drive is nothing. Hell you can drive for seven to fourteen hours straight and still be in Alaska. A small world I think not.

A city, to me, is a small world. Uncomfortably small. Everything you need is within five to ten minutes away, which to me, makes your bubble even smaller. Granted this has its perks and by no means am I bashing these perks. But I do believe things like that diminish our natural human need to explore and expand. Your whole world is packed for you in twenty blocks of concrete buildings, quarter acre lawns, billboards and traffic. It’s definitely a different kind of world. Exciting, but different.

So how would an Alaskan handle being away from the mother land? How do you transition from fresh air to just….air? Or mild traffic to…fast pace chaos. How do you go from mamma moose and her twin calves or mamma bear and her twin cubs to alley cats and and the occasional suburban dog? If any of my friends who have managed to stay out of Alaska for over a year, please comment with answers. I’m not oppose to moving out of Alaska, for I love exploring and risk taking. But I was born here and I’ll die here.

What would you miss the most?

I’d miss everything. I’d miss those winters of going snowboarding in untouched snow. That soreness you get from a full blue bird day of shredding down the side of an Alaskan mountain. I’d miss spending a good afternoon mowing the grass and weed whacking, then having a beer shortly after and admiring your fresh groomed lawn. I’d miss local mom and pop restaurants and businesses. I’d miss the community that we have which is full of kindness (for the most part) as well as that unique Alaskan, independent mentality that we all have. I’d miss the natural season change indicators. The termination dust on the mountain, which means winter is coming. The rotting leaves dog shit smell in the April, which means spring is here. The fireweed as it begins its journey from green, to purple bloom, to the funky cotton stage, and then finally orange and red. That crisp smell in the air just before and after a fresh snow fall. I’d miss the “do it yourself” attitude because in Alaska, sometimes there isn’t a business you can just call to fix a certain thing. You have to just do it. I love that.

Could I live anywhere else?

Why not? Adapt, evolve, and overcome…right? Seems like everywhere could use a little dash of Alaskan. In a few years who knows what the world will offer me and my soon to be bride. I just hope, where ever we live for a bit, they have good salmon….and real crab. They gotta have real crab…

Adapt. Evolve. Overcome.

I was born in Alaska. I will die in Alaska.

A Sunday Message

alive

Several years ago, I gave up on caring about what people think. I accepted the fact that I’m going to say, do, wear, post, respond, blog, tweet, take photos of, record, and create things that may be completely pointless to most and probably will make me look absolutely ridiculous. Ridiculous is what I aim for. If I can get at least one person to laugh, even for the slightest moment, then that day is a good day. Because whatever is going on in your life, for that brief moment, you forgot about it. I like the fact that I can be friends with everyone.
When I was 23, I joined the Masonic lodge in Eagle River (Eagle River #13). I was the youngest first degree mason in the state of Alaska at the time. There I found men whom after I looked to as brothers, all from a variety of generations and all with different backgrounds, religions, and history. Most of them veterans or active duty military, all contributors to a society that I came to see as a crumbling culture in serious need of a swift kick in the ass. The application was fairly short but the waiting process was long. On the application was a small space to write my reasons and interests in becoming a mason. This wasn’t enough space. I had to write an essay. Ten pages later, six of which were mess-ups crumbled on the floor, I had the fine tuned four page essay ready to be read out loud among dozens of soon to be brethren. Most of it explained who I was, what I believed in, and of course my reasons for wanting to join. I wanted more history, I wanted to make myself a better man, I wanted to be a part of something ancient that helped carve this country from the beginning, the good, the bad, the ugly. I wanted to be surrounded by more history, living history. Men who have seen what is now considered the old. I was born in the wrong era and I wanted to be connected with a better one.
Now I truly don’t care what side you’re on politically. Liberal, republican, democrat, green party, hippies, whatever. We’re all the same in the end. A good friend once told me that “it wont matter because in a million years we’ll all be dead and no one will even care”. He’s right. Now trust me I’m an advocate for chaos now days, so my views may be a little “everything burns” kind of thing. I’m a firm believer in shouting at the top of your lungs the things you believe in. Make it loud and make it noticed, even if it’s just you. Because even if you’re the only one being loud, you’re king of the world for that little moment because hey, no one else is speaking up right?
Now the point of this post is coming. Yes I’m a believer in speaking and believing in what ever you want. But you’re about to meet the tyrant in me (my mind is a trench warfare 24/7, it is unstable, it forgets, it is love and it is war). Today is the day Westboro Baptist Church is going to protest the Alaska Native Heritage Center. Now granted, it is their right to shout and believe in whatever they want but this is where I draw the line. The moment you begin to shout hate towards people, military, the dead, ect. , you’re freedom of speech (to me) is now void. Your right to say what you want becomes invalid and you are no longer a part of the well oiled machine that was once this nation.
So through out my duties today, we will be on the lookout for WBBC. You may be able to get away with it in other states, where your numbers are larger, but I promise you. If you’re here, in my state, in my home, you will not be for long.

Best regards,
Ian Amidon, the Bourbon King.

Pay It Forward

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Innocent Family Ripped From Home During Boston Manhunt

I don’t care what kind of dangerous man is at large. Fuck our government and fuck all this shit. End rant. Waiting for the rest of you to grow balls and start really fighting back.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=2LrbsUVSVl8#!

The Boston Marathon Massacre Ripple Effect Predection

Now this will unravel for the next few days but it will be quick considering i think almost everything is preplanned. This will induce fear into the public, government controls the public with fear. Every so often the fear has to be re-established. Governments gain their power with fear, public fears “terrorists” and “guns” and turns to someone to control the problem rather than doing it themselves. This explosion will be linked to house hold items bought at your local Sportsmans Warehouse/Home Depot. They will then be looked at in media as “things people don’t need to buy”. All the while the point of “its not the items, its the people using them wrongly” will be totally over looked. Thank you and good night. I’ll be in the dark shadowy corner enjoying my Bourbon while the rest of you think this theory over.

Side Note: Don’t forget to follow up on North Korea, you know the crazy folks with nukes. Don’t be a sheep and eat the grass, pay attention the the background action. Fuck the media.

Red Dawn

So North Korea is flexing its epeen again. I havent read much on the matter to rant enough about it. What I’ve heard is all through headlines and word of mouth. Apparently they have declared war on South Korea as well as US forces in South Korea. If youre going to wonder if Im worried, Im not. However how long do we brush aside these threats as just some war hungry tool pretending to be a shit talker? What if something happens? Dont be surprised and shocked if war is waged in Korea and possibly in our own back yards. I hope it wont happen but maybe part of me does. Our country needs a wake up call on this kind of scale. Call me crazy, I’ll consider that your fear.

Zombie 101

I’m sharing something my lovely girlfriend Nicole typed up back in December. Print it out, fold it up and put it in your fallout backpack for when the time comes.

How to Survive a Zombie Apocalypse

            With the anticipated “end of the world” approaching, which theory will take effect? Will it be the global war, natural cataclysm, or the infamous zombie apocalypse?  The latest craze of zombies has been widely seen on television shows and movies, so this must be a sign. Let’s pretend the zombie outbreak is what the world will face, we must prepare for the worst. It is best to learn and plan for the future because there is no escaping the takeover of the undead. At the end of this essay, you will be fully knowledgeable with the tactics and skills of fighting off the infected.

Identifying a Zombie

            First things first, knowing the appearance of a zombie. All zombies take the form of a human, so do not get confused with the similarities of an uninfected. A newly infected will have a bite mark located anywhere on their body and piercing blood shot red eyes. The undead only have a never-ending appetite for humans. Moaning and lack of speech are signs of the undead. The freshly bitten have vicious and animal like growls. Since they are newly bitten, they still have the stamina to run as fast as a regular human.

The other kind of zombies we all come to know is the decaying ones, who have been dead for some time now. They let out a horrible decomposing stench from their bodies that will sting your nose. Some may have missing limbs and others may have internal organs dangling out of their bodies. Their clothes are musty and torn up, exposing their decaying tissue and scratches. Since the only thing that functions in these zombies is their brains, that’s the only way to kill them. A simple blow to the head with your weapon or getting rid of their head in general, will guarantee you a win.

Form a Plan

            When the apocalypse has started, do not panic. Your main goal is to stay alive until rescue has come. Your first step is to find the right place to protect yourself. I would recommend camping out at a department/sporting goods store where all ideal supplies are in reach. Zombies are attracted to bright lights and loud noises, so don’t pick an area like a carnival. Whatever you do, do not wear anything that is brightly colored or neon. You do not want any zombies to spot you, so wear dark clothes or camouflage would be desirable. It is also a smart idea to layer your clothing because it is harder for zombies to bite into. If you are going to weather out this attack with family and friends, make sure they are trustworthy and fit for the fight. Always travel together, do not be like “Scooby and the Gang” and split up. Also, it would not be a bad idea to have a couple of friends you do not care about and use them as zombie bait. Have them stand in front or behind you just in case of a zombie ambush. Follow these tactics and you will extend your survivability.

Gathering Supplies

Now that you know the techniques to survive an attack, you must know the essential supplies to have with you. Food and water is at the top of the list because you can’t live without them. When deciding on what kind of foods you want to stock up on, always go with perishable foods or canned foods. These kinds of foods will last you a long time and will not rot. Food and water can be found in any store, so go ahead and steal them because who is alive to arrest you? Another important item is a weapon. Any type of gun will be okay but one thing when it comes to guns is you need ammunition. You do not want to run out of ammo, so with this item you will have to stock up on a lot. If you are not a fan of firearms, you can always pick a melee weapon. Make sure the melee weapon is long enough to give you some distances from a zombie. You do not want to get any zombie blood splattered on you. Some effective melee weapons are an axe, baseball bat, or crowbar. One thing you need to remember is, aim for the head. If you are traveling in a vehicle, then you will need gasoline. Gas can also be used when you are outnumbered by a group of zombies headed your way. Spill some gas onto the ground and onto zombies; light the gas with any kind of ignition. All the zombies will slowly burn and you will defeat the horde. Some other items that are also useful to you are flashlights, hand crank radio, first aid kit and maps.

Defeating the zombie apocalypse is difficult but with the right supplies and knowledge, you will come out successful. If you are bitten by a zombie, have someone kill you or kill yourself. You can also stay alive and become a part of the undead. Some ways to get infected are primarily being bitten or zombie blood entering the blood stream by any orifices on your body. The year 2012 is coming to an end, and remembering these tips when the zombie invasion comes will help you stay alive. Good luck and happy zombie hunting.