Hour 1 - 3
Hour 1 -- Freedom's Phoenix Headline News
Hour 2 -- Christina Tobin (Founder/Chair of Free And Equal) on creating open and transparent elections for all
Hour 3 -- Dr. Phranq Tamburri (NMD and local activist) in studio to discuss the Trump Report
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December 31st, 2015
Declare Your Independence with Ernest Hancock
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Studio Line: 602-264-2800
Freedom's Phoenix Headline News
News Link •
DNA Data From California Newborn Blood Samples Stored, Sold To 3rd Parties (VIDEO)
12-31-2015 • http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com
PUBLISHER RECOMMENDED VIDEO
(KPIX 5) — This might come as a surprise to California natives in their 20s and early 30s: The state owns your DNA.
Every year about four million newborns in the U.S. get a heel prick at birth, to screen for congenital disorders, that if found early enough, can save their life.
Danielle Gatto barely remembers the nurse even mentioning test performed on her two daughters. "I don't think that any woman is in a state of mind to sit down and start studying up on the literature they send you home with," she said.
But later she was shocked to find, her daughters' leftover blood was not thrown away. "The state collects the cards and then uses them in a database," she said. The information is buried on page 12 of the brochure about the Newborn Screening Program that hospitals give parents of newborns before they go home.
Turns out a non-descript office building in Richmond contains the DNA of every person born in California since 1983. It's a treasure trove of information about you, from the color of your eyes and hair to your pre-disposition to diseases like Alzheimer's and cancer.
Using these newborn blood spots for research, the state is able to screen babies for 80 hereditary diseases. But the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) is not the only agency using the blood spots. Law enforcement can request them. Private companies can buy them to do research – without your consent. "Everybody has a right to make an informed decision. That is not for the state to decide for them," said Gatto.
The CDPH turned down a request for an interview and wouldn't explain why it doesn't ask permission to sell babies' blood spots. But it said parents can have them destroyed https://www.cdph.ca.gov/programs/nbs/Pages/default.aspx . And CDPH says the blood spots are de-identified and can't be tracked back to the child.
But Yaniv Erlich with Columbia University and the New York Genome Center said there's no way to guarantee that. His research demonstrated how easy it is to take anonymized DNA, cross-reference it with online data and connect it to a name. "You need to have some training in genetics, but once you have that kind of training the attack is not very complicated to conduct," he said.
But Erlich doesn't see the privacy risk as a drawback. In fact, he just launchedDNA.land, a crowd-sourced database where people can voluntarily donate their genetic blueprints so that everyone can benefit. "I want to stress that sharing genomic information is highly important, to advance biomedical research," said Erlich. "This is the only way that we can help families with kids that are affected by these devastating genetic disorders."
Such was the case with Luke Jellin, diagnosed at birth with a rare metabolic disease, thanks to a heel prick. "Had he not been tested he would have been severely brain damaged, possibly would have had heart and kidney problems," said his mother Kelly Jellin, a member of the Save Babies Through Screening Foundation. She's thankful the state stored the blood spots of millions of babies born before hers. "If blood spots hadn't been saved, they wouldn't have been able to make the test that saved my child's life," she said.
But Gatto thinks the state should have to at least ask her consent before storing and selling her daughters' DNA. "We are at the beginning of a frontier of so much genetic research, there is no knowing at this point in time what that info could be used for," said Gatto. 'The worst thing as a parent is to think that a decision that you are making today may negatively affect your children down the road."
Gatto ended up requesting that her child's blood spots be destroyed. Meanwhile, her husband – state Assemblyman Mike Gatto – introduced a bill this year that would have required signed consent on newborn screening. Opposition from the state and the industry killed it.
For more from reporter Julie Watts on the topic, check out her personal blog
Facebook Tinkers With Users' Emotions in News Feed Experiment, Stirring Outcry
By VINDU GOELJUNE 29, 2014
To Facebook, we are all lab rats.
Facebook routinely adjusts its users' news feeds — testing out the number of ads they see or the size of photos that appear — often without their knowledge. It is all for the purpose, the company says, of creating a more alluring and useful product.
But last week, Facebook revealed that it had manipulated the news feeds of over half a million randomly selected users to change the number of positive and negative posts they saw. It was part of a psychological study to examine how emotions can be spread on social media.
The company says users consent to this kind of manipulation when they agree to its terms of service. But in the quick judgment of the Internet, that argument was not universally accepted.
"I wonder if Facebook KILLED anyone with their emotion manipulation stunt. At their scale and with depressed people out there, it's possible," the privacy activist Lauren Weinstein wrote in a Twitter post.
On Sunday afternoon, the Facebook researcher who led the study, Adam D. I. Kramer, posted a public apology on his Facebook page.
"I can understand why some people have concerns about it, and my co-authors and I are very sorry for the way the paper described the research and any anxiety it caused," he wrote.
Facebook is hardly the only Internet company that manipulates and analyzes consumer data. Google and Yahoo also watch how users interact with search results or news articles to adjust what is shown; they say this improves the user experience. But Facebook's most recent test did not appear to have such a beneficial purpose.
"Facebook didn't do anything illegal, but they didn't do right by their customers," said Brian Blau, a technology analyst with Gartner, a research firm. "Doing psychological testing on people crosses the line."
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Hour 2 -- Christina Tobin (Founder/Chair of Free And Equal) on creating open and transparent elections for all
Founder and Chair of Free and Equal Elections Foundation and President and CEO of Free and Equal, Inc.
'All elections shall be Free & Equal'
More Voices, More Choices
Founder & Chair
Christina Tobin loves to fight the good fight… for US voters. She's making a career of helping honest, earnest candidates to run for political office.
In the course of her work, she decided to mainstream her efforts. In order to shift power back to individual voter, Tobin founded The Free & Equal Elections Foundation, a non-partisan, 501(c)3 non-profit organization, dedicated to creating open and transparent elections in 2008. Free and Equal is the platform that's helping thousands of citizens work together, who want to clean up politics for once and for all.
A bit of background about Tobin. In the 2004 presidential election, Tobin defended 29,000 signatures in Illinois for Ralph Nader when he ran as an independent, while still in college. Through this, she'd had a strong taste of politics. She wondered if there wasn't a better way.
In the same year, she successfully defended 39,000 signatures for Rich Whitney, the Green Party candidate for Illinois governor. In 2008, Tobin served as Ralph Nader's national ballot access coordinator, helping to collect more than 500,000 signatures to put Ralph Nader on the District of Columbia and 45 state ballots. She also organized the first alternatively-televised Presidential debate.
In 2010, Tobin organized a series of debates for Illinois gubernatorial candidates. Increasing visibility of alternative candidates by providing debate forums is part of Tobin's larger strategy to inspire passionate activists and young people, who do not have major money sources, to run for public office. By 2011, Tobin served as Vice President of Taxpayers United of America. Her work exposed big pension payouts in Illinois and 12 other states.
For the 2012 Presidential Election cycle, Tobin moderated a Presidential debate with media personality Larry King, broadcasting around the world by RT TV, Al-Jazeera and C-SPAN. The debates provided a venue for four U.S. presidential candidates from the Constitution, Green, Justice, and Libertarian parties to address topics that the mainstream debates left out. It became a Top 10 Trend on Twitter. (Tobin holds the record for moderating the most state and national election debates in the United States).
Currently, Tobin is organizing a follow-up to Free and Equal's successful 2014 United We Stand Festival. The UWS Fests will feature celebrities, leaders and speakers, musical performers, artists and intellectuals who are socially and politically engaged.
Tobin's dream has always been, to bring more voices and more choices to the U.S. political arena.
Christina's previous interviews on the Declare Your Independence with Ernest Hancock Radio Show:
Hour 3 -- Dr. Phranq Tamburri (NMD and local activist) on the Trump Report
Dr. Phranq Tamburri, NMD
TOPIC: The Trump Report - Update on Donald Trump's Campaign
Phranq's previous interviews on the Declare Your Independence with Ernest Hancock Radio Show:
LET'S STAND WITH RAND
With this end-of-year Deadline, the pending Audit the Fed vote, the next Republican presidential debate, and voting in Iowa and New Hampshire just weeks away, it's time for the Liberty Movement to rally around Rand like never before.
Michael Moore says Donald Trump will 'absolutely' be the Republican candidate
Michael Moore has never been one to hold back his opinions, so when the Oscar-winning filmmaker airs his thoughts about Donald Trump, it tends to make news.
"Donald Trump is absolutely going to be the Republican candidate for president of the United States," Moore told BI. "It's going from being a joke to being a serious reality."
Moore elaborated by saying that "people are feeling more and more that we've moved back into a darker time."
But the progressive documentary director thinks it's impossible that Trump will become president, because, as he puts it, "81 percent of the country is either women, people of color, or youth between the ages of 18 to 31," groups that he says Trump has alienated.
Moore believes the selection of the next president will come down to the voter turnout by the Democrats.
"My side of of the political fence is the slacker side of the fence," Moore said. "When people ask me, 'Who should we vote in the primaries?' I say, 'You should vote for who you think should be president.' Don't vote for who has a better chance, because whoever has a 'D' by their name on the ballot is going to win, assuming we get the vote out."
And right now, he sees Bernie Sanders having the edge over Hillary Clinton.
"My biggest concern about Hillary right now is her lack of inspiration," Moore said. "She doesn't get big crowds. There's not a lot of excitement about her. Too many young people see her as the same-old, same-old politics. So she is going to have to have a bit of what Obama had and a bit of what Bernie has if she's going to be the candidate. I honestly believe that Bernie Sanders could be elected president of the United States. I think people will pour out in droves to elect him and there's just not enough angry white guys anymore over the age of 35 to put Trump in office."
Trump to Appear on Fox News' New Year's Eve Show
Donald Trump will be appearing on Fox News Channel's New Year's Eve show in the hour leading up to midnight, Mediaite reports.
"The Five" co-hosts Eric Bolling and Kimberly Guilfoyle announced on Monday's show they would be hosting "Fox News Channel's All-American New Year" beginning at 10 p.m. Eastern on December 31.
"Since it's 2016, we thought it would be great to hear from some candidates," Bolling said. "Donald Trump is going to ring in the new year with us, and you're going to hear from a bunch more of the 2016 contenders. You definitely don't want to miss this New Year's Eve party with us."
Bolling did not indicate who the other candidates might be.
News Link •
Darth Vader Buys a Light Saber with Bitcoin through Airbitz
12-31-2015 • Meghan Kellison-Lords
We hit up Target in San Francisco and have some fun with #bitcoin & Airbitz. Silliness ensues..
12-30-2015 • popsci.com
(Yep... Light Sabers any day now. And I bet this isn't taught in government schools :)