Linux For Cynics One user's experiences with Linux


Lavabit Closed Rather Than Comply with Government

Lavabit, an encrypted email service believed to have been used by National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden, has abruptly shut down. The move came amidst a legal fight that appeared to involve U.S. government attempts to win access to customer information. In a Democracy Now! broadcast exclusive, we are joined by Lavabit owner Ladar Levison and his lawyer, Jesse Binnall. "Unfortunately, I can’t talk about it. I would like to, believe me," Levison says. "I think if the American public knew what our government was doing, they wouldn’t be allowed to do it anymore." In a message to his customers last week, Levison said: "I have been forced to make a difficult decision: to become complicit in crimes against the American people, or walk away from nearly 10 years of hard work by shutting down Lavabit." Levison said he was barred from discussing the events over the past six weeks that led to his decision. Soon after, another secure email provider called Silent Circle also announced it was shutting down.

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NSA Happenings


The FISC creating troves of new secret law, not interpreting standing statute

GCHQ hoovers every single bit that's routed through the UK

US fucked themselves by making their pawns ground Bolivian head of state plane out of suspicion, sending extradition requests before he's even in the country

Venezuela's extradition treaties with the US contain clauses that allow it to reject requests if it believes they are politically motivated.

NSA recruiters struggle to justify their bullshit

Snowden has been offered asylum by Venezuela, Nicuragua, and Bolivia, seems that private chartered jet from the Datacell guy who supports wikileaks will come in handy:

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Richard Stallman inducted to the Internet Hall of Fame


Free Software Foundation founder Richard Stallman today joins the ranks of notable individuals who have been inducted into the Internet Hall of Fame for their significant contributions to the advancement of the global Internet.

Isn't it strange that just a few months ago, every mention of RMS was accompanied by voices decrying what many termed his paranoia and mistrust of government, yet now, if anything, his warnings seem almost innocently naive compared to what was truly going on.

Congratulations RMS, the honor is well deserved.

Full story here:

Other inductees listed here:

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Virtual Richard Stallman

vrms is a package that will analyze the set of currently-installed packages on a Debian-based system, and report all of the packages from the non-free and contrib trees which are currently installed.

Just run this command and you can find out what software you have on your system that doesn't respect your freedom!

$ vrms

Here's the output on my Debian laptop:

                Non-free packages installed on x200

firmware-iwlwifi                    Binary firmware for Intel PRO/Wireless 3945 and 802.11
skype                               Wherever you are, wherever they are

                Contrib packages installed on x200

flashplugin-nonfree                 Adobe Flash Player - browser plugin

  2 non-free packages, 0.2% of 1164 installed packages.
  1 contrib packages, 0.1% of 1164 installed packages.

It's like having a little rms right on your command line!

To find out more about Richard Stallman and his political views, go to his personal page: