The Attack On Privacy Empowered By Facebook Continues

Your Facebook photos could get you a good deal when shopping, but it might be more than you bargained for. Facedeals, a program that recognizes patrons as they walk in the store, could be used by some businesses to offer special discounts to those who choose to participate. The technology has been developed by Redpepper.

Facedeals uses a surveillance camera that is able to identify customers by using Facebook photos and face-recognition technology. In order to take part in the program, consumers must first purchase an app.

Once a shopper buys the necessary app and enters a store with a Facedeals camera, the system scans his face, checks him into the location and sends a discount code. The discount is based on what the customer “likes” on Facebook.

Some people think it’s a win-win situation: The business is able to keep track of customers, and customers willing to participate get a discount.

The creator explains the benefits:

For businesses, there is no easier way to deliver customized deals. Users receive personalized offers simply by coming through the door, which removes the guesswork typically performed by both parties. Businesses will no longer wonder which offers will stick. Patrons will no longer plan outings with a deal-a-day mindset, but can simply frequent their favorite spots and count on being rewarded.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ybWQjCz-nzM&w=560&h=315]

2,362 Millionaires Received Unemployment

A report released by the Congressional Research Service reveals that 2,362 millionaires received unemployment benefits in 2009. In total, the unemployed millionaires collected more than $20 million in benefits. The report came out Aug. 2 and is based on data made available by the Internal Revenue Service.

According to the report, 2,840 millionaires received unemployment benefits in 2008. That number decreased to 2,632 in 2009. Although the number of millionaires receiving benefits decreased in 2009, the overall amount they received increased. In 2008, the government spent $18.6 million taking care of millionaires. In 2009, the amount rose to $20.8 million.

On average, millionaires received $8,806 in unemployment benefits in 2009.

The report also uncovered that 120,227 people who made between $200,000 and $500,000 received unemployment benefits.

The Congressional Research Service observes, “the DOL [Department of Labor] requires that states pay compensation for unemployment to all eligible beneficiaries regardless of their income level because individual or household income would not be considered to impact the fact or cause of unemployment.”

Utah High School Lets Students Take Classes From Home

The childhood rhyme, “No more pencils, no more books, no more teachers’ dirty looks,” could become a reality for students in Salt Lake City. Innovations High will be trying out a new way of educating.

The school will not have a bell that rings promptly every morning. Instead, students will be allowed to work at their own pace. Innovations High will be a blend of online classes, digital textbooks, technical school and community college courses.

Students can choose to attend class, or, if they show great ability in a particular subject, they may attend that subject only once a week, according to The Salt Lake Tribune. The learning regimen is similar to that of many universities.

The school is designed to be a unique blend of online courses and face-to-face time with students and teachers.

“What we are trying to do in Salt Lake is create something that has not been created before,” said Ken Grove, the principal at Innovations High. “Students are allowed to dictate how they will take their coursework.”

Obamacare Pushes Up The Price Of Pizza

Papa John’s is anticipating the effects of Obamacare. The CEO of the popular pizza place believes it will have to raise its prices.

CEO and founder “Papa” John Schnatter says that Obamacare will result in more expensive pizzas. If Schnatter supplies healthcare to all of his uninsured full-time employees, the restaurant will have to increase prices to make up the difference.

“Our best estimate is that the Obamacare will cost 11 to 14 cents per pizza, or 15 to 20 cents per order from a corporate basis,” Schnatter said during a conference call last week, as reported by POLITICO.

“We’re not supportive of Obamacare, like most businesses in our industry. But our business model and unit economics are about as ideal as you can get for a food company to absorb Obamacare,” he added. “If Obamacare is in fact not repealed, we will find tactics to shallow out any Obamacare costs and core strategies to pass that cost onto consumers in order to protect our shareholders [sic] best interests.”

Hillary Dances Dirty In South Africa

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton went to South Africa this week. She attended an AIDS conference, met with Nelson Mandela and danced with a local woman in a way that would make prom chaperones feel like they shirked their duty.

At a dinner in Johannesburg, hosted by South African Foreign Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, Clinton took to the floor in an electric blue jacket. Jazz singer Judith Sephuma had her eye on Clinton. The two women shook and shimmied, grinding the night away.

In recent times, Clinton has ditched her boring reputation in favor of being Mrs. Cool. During  a recent trip to Cartegena she was photographed dancing and drinking beer at a nightclub. Before that, a video of the former first lady texting while wearing sunglasses went viral. A website was even created as a result of the picture.

Rumors have swirled for years that Clinton might make a run for the Presidency in 2016.

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Man Carries Gun To Movie Theatre, Gets Arrested

A man in Ohio is in jail after he brought a gun and knives to a showing of “The Dark Knight Rises.” His lawyer says he wanted to be able to defend himself.

Scott Smith took a bag into the theatre with him. An off duty police officer noticed Smith and had suspicions. Eventually, police searched Smith’s bag and found a loaded 9mm, extra ammo and four knives.

“This was simply an instance where a man felt fear going into a movie theater in light of recent shootings and incidents around the country and he wanted protection for himself,” Matthew Bruce, Smith’s attorney, told Cleveland.com.

But Westlake Police Lt. Ray Arcuri isn’t convinced that Smith just wanted to defend himself. Arcuri believes that Smith’s choice of seating – he sat in the very back of the theatre – shows he was up to no good.

“What concerns us is where he was sitting in the theater,” said Arcuri. “If he chose to do something there, all his potential victims were in front of him and he had an advantage over them.”

Arcuri believes that officers must question the motives of anyone who would bring a gun to a theatre, especially after the recent shooting in Colorado. “When you consider the movie he was going to and what happened in Colorado, you have to wonder what would make him want to bring the weapons into that particular film. Our police officer did a great job spotting him.”

Smith was arrested on suspicion of illegally carrying a concealed weapon and three other weapons charges. Prosecutors have not yet decided if they will pursue the case.

Government Program Gives Free Food To Anyone Under 18

A program in Northern California funded by the Department of Agriculture is giving away free food this summer. Anyone under 18 qualifies, regardless of family income or citizenship.

“These nutritious lunches are completely free for all children 18 years of age and under,” said Monique Stovall, Director of Food Services, in a press release. “No questions asked.”

The program has raised concerns. Namely: Children from wealthy families can get free food, and taxpayers foot the bill.

“Normally we wouldn’t qualify for a free lunch, but we’re close and it’s convenient, and my kids like it — that’s important,” said Julie Marks, a mother who takes her two sons to the Summer Fun Café multiple times a week.

The Summer Fun Café serves kids at 69 locations around the San Diego area. Operating Monday through Friday, the program provides a healthy lunch.

“We just want everyone to eat healthy this summer. That is our goal,” said Stovall.

Obama On Romney: ‘It’s Like Robin Hood In Reverse’

At a fundraising stop in Connecticut on Monday, President Barack Obama compared Mitt Romney to everyone’s favorite green-tight-wearing, bow-carrying fictional character—Robin Hood. The speech was attended by hundreds of Obama supporters who each paid $500 to attend the event.

In regards to Romney’s philosophy of extending tax cuts on the wealthy, Obama remarked, “It’s like Robin Hood in reverse. It’s Romney Hood,” reported POLITCO.

Obama alluded to another fictional character in a scathing rebuke of Romney’s economic ideology. “They have tried to sell us this trickle-down, tax-cut fairy dust before. And guess what? It does not work. It didn’t work then, it won’t work now. It’s not a plan to create jobs, it’s not a plan to reduce our deficit, and it is not a plan to move our economy forward.”

However, there is no evidence that Robin Hood’s deceitful tactics improved the economy of Nottingham.

Cops Taser, Arrest Innocent Deaf Woman

An innocent, deaf woman in Washington called 911 for help. She didn’t get help. Instead, she got tased and arrested.

Lashonn White was in jail for about three days without an interpreter, despite two State laws requiring law enforcement to appoint an interpreter for deaf suspects.

White was attacked in her apartment on April 6. Although she is deaf, White was able to communicate with a 911 dispatcher using a phone equipped with special video capabilities connected to a TV.

“Right now! This is serious! She’s fighting at me, then she chokes me. She’s coming right at me!” White said on the night of her attack.

Dispatch logs show that two officers from the Tacoma police force, Ryan Koskovich and Michael Young, responded to the scene within about six minutes. They received texts on their way with the messages, “Person doing the hitting is a Sophia,” and “Vict. is Lashonn White.” Police records also reveal that the officers were informed that White is deaf.

This was the conversation when police arrived:

White: “I’m deaf.  I can’t hear if they’re out front knocking or whatever … I can’t—are they going to the front or back? Where are the police at?”

Dispatch: “They want her to go outside the front door.”

White: “Oh, they’re here? Okay, I’m on my way to meet them. I’m going right now.”

When White walked out the door she was tased. Her body fell to the pavement causing her multiple injuries. She was then arrested and taken to jail.

Koskovich said he tased White because she “ignored my commands.”

Margaret Sims, a neighbor who witnessed the incident, explained to KIRO Seattle: “They had tased her because he thought she was coming at him, but what she was doing was running to him. But he said, ‘stop’ and he didn’t put his hand up. He just said, ‘stop’ and she couldn’t understand that.”

Another resident of the apartment complex, Geraldine Warren, described the ordeal in similar terms. “They just told her to halt. She kept running, she can’t hear—she’s deaf.”

Tacoma police have not responded to the incident.

White House Catching Heat Over Baseball Bat Photo

Lawmakers in Turkey are taking a swing at President Barack Obama after the White House released a photo of him holding a bat during a conversation with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The White House found the dispute serious enough to warrant the issuing of a statement about the controversy.

The conversation between Obama and Erdogan took place on Monday. Shortly after the exchange, the White House released a photo of Obama holding a baseball bat while talking on the phone. It contained the caption, “President Barack Obama talks on the phone with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of Turkey in the Oval Office, July 30, 2012.”

Umut Oran, vice president of the Republican People’s Party, said the photo was “an implicit insult to Turkey and its citizens.”

Questions have arisen over a possible hidden meaning in the photo.

The White House released this statement:

We released the photo with only one purpose in mind, to highlight the President’s continuing close relationship with Prime Minister Erdogan and draw attention to the important conversation they had about the worsening situation in Syria. The President values his friendship and close partnership with Prime Minister Erdogan on a range of important issues on which the United States cooperates with Turkey.

Peace-Loving Gay Community Violently Protests Chick-fil-A

Since Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy vocally supported traditional marriage, the LGBT community vowed to boycott the intolerant, hateful fried chicken chain. But the protests have been anything but a tolerant love fest.

On Thursday, a Chick-fil-A in Torrance, Calif., became a canvass for a gay artist. The words “Tastes Like Hate” and a picture of a cow were scrawled across the side of the building. Manny Castro claimed the artwork.

Castro denies any wrong doing. “Everybody is entitled to free speech, but it seems like for the gay tribe, this is more of an issue of equal rights — human rights,” Castro told the Huffington Post. “I’m against what these people stand for, what this company stands for. They’re trying to take away what little rights we already have. It’s paint on a wall. It got removed in less than an hour. It’s not that much of a crime — it’s a protest.”

A Chick-fil-A in St. Louis was also vandalized. “Don’t Hate,” was written on the side of the building which serves drive-thru customers.

At a Chick-fil-A in Chicago, a group of Chick-fil-A protestors congregated around a homeless man reading his Bible. An eyewitness recounted the event.

While there, a group formed around an elderly African-American homeless man, who was reading his bible while seated along a fence rail off to the side of the protest. Some in the group confronted the man, who was reading the bible aloud, and engaged him in theological debates. A few others took the opportunity to mock the man, which I captured on video:

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x8G4jI3VI8U&w=560&h=315]

Adam Smith was the CFO of an Arizona-based medical device manufacturer. Smith waited in the drive-thru to receive free water and berate a Chick-fil-A employee. Smith later posted another video, apologizing to the employee.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rh3hJve0v5I?rel=0&w=640&h=360]

Some gay rights activists have seen the hypocrisy in the protests. Most notable of which being internet sensation Antoine Dodson. (Dodson became famous overnight when he appeared on a news station in Hunstsville, Ala., to discuss the attempted rape of his sister.) Dodson spoke to a Birmingham, Ala., talk show, “The Matt Murphy Show,” and said that the gay community is “becoming bullies.”

The Return Of The Teleprompter

President Barack Obama is once again relying on his trusted teleprompter during his campaign speeches.

The Hill announced in July that the Obama campaign was going to be weaning the President off his teleprompter –- or, as some call it, TOTUS. It was an attempt to get him to speak “more extemporaneously.”

That announcement came days after the campaign already felt the damage from Obama’s “you didn’t build that” remark — a statement that was made without the teleprompter. Conservative capitalists claim that the statement showed Obama’s true colors.

Since the monumental misspeak, the campaign has stated that Obama has continued to make appearances without the teleprompter.

But The Examiner reports that the President reverted to his old method during a recent stop in Florida, a State that will be important in November.

 
[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fKTej_VJZ0M&w=420&h=315]
 
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Media Covers Kiss-In, Ignores Success Of Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day

A lack of media coverage of Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day has some people thinking the mainstream media are chicken. Are they afraid to cover a story that does not further their agenda?

While many outlets did cover the event, it was not given adequate treatment in several publications. At least not as much as the “kiss-in” that took place Friday.

The restaurant set a sales record Wednesday. The chain will not release sales numbers, but Steve Robinson, Chick-fil-A’s executive vice president of marketing, confirmed that the company set a record. There is reason to believe that it was a world record.

Under any other circumstances, one would expect to find major coverage of world record sales. However, as reported by the Weekly Standard, there was no front-page coverage of the event in The New York Times, The Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, the Los Angeles Times, the Sun-Sentinel or The Boston Globe. And many media outlets that did cover the event only mentioned it in passing, or in an attempt to make Chick-fil-A supporters seem like hateful bigots.

One would think that the number of people involved in an event would largely influence the coverage of a story. However, the “kiss-in” continues to receive attention despite a lack of a nationwide involvement.

Huffington Post sent out multiple tweets in an attempt to get photos of “kiss-in” participants. It seems they knew they would have to doctor the photos to make it appear as though the kiss-in drew the same number of supporters as Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day. Huffington Post resorted to: “Or even if you’re not going — send us your gay kiss photo!”

Many news outlets seem to be using photos and video clips of Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day in stories about the “kiss-in” in such a way that the average browser at first glance might think the droves of people are “kiss-in” supporters. Like this one, this one, this one and this one.

Crop Circles Appear In Washington

Crop circles have been found in an Eastern Washington wheat field. Local farmers are perplexed by the circles. The design, which resembles Mickey Mouse ears, covers about an acre of wheat.

The circles along Highway 174 near Spokane, Wash., were first spotted on July 24. There are no signs of footprints or human involvement.

“We’re trying to figure out how they got out there without breaking any of the wheat. It’s hard to walk through the crunchy wheat and not knock it down,” said Cindy Geib, whose family owns the field. “At the same time, it’s hard to think it’s aliens. It’s a bizarre thing to wrap your brain around.”

The circles will cause the Geib family to lose out on some of their revenue.

“Of course, we don’t have alien insurance,” Geib said. “You can’t do anything other than laugh about it. You just kind of roll with the theory it’s aliens and you’re special because aliens chose your spot.”

The Lincoln County area is no stranger to the odd event. Crop circles were found in 2008, 2009 and 2010.

The phenomenon reaches outside of the United States, with many crop circles being found throughout the world in 2012.

 

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PQ2fSQQOlxM&w=560&h=315]

 

Woman Breaks Into Jail, Wants To Be Arrested

How bad is the economy under President Barack Obama? It’s so bad that a woman in Ohio broke into jail and told deputies she wanted to be arrested.

Tiffany Hurd attempted to climb over a barbed wire fence early Sunday morning. Hurd was told to leave, but she continued trying to climb the fence. After refusing to leave, Hurd was charged with criminal trespass and disorderly conduct. She informed the staff, “I want to be arrested.”

Butler County Sheriff Richard K. Jones  said: “Her actions really caught me by surprise. I know the economy is bad right now, but I didn’t think it was so bad that someone would actually try to break in to jail. I’ve seen a lot throughout my career, but this one is truly unique. I will probably never say that I’ve now ‘seen it all,’ but this one sure comes close.”

Last month, Rodney Dwayne Valentine was released from the Rockingham County Jail in North Carolina. He refused to leave and was then arrested and charged with second-degree trespassing.

Black Pastors Organize Anti-Obama Campaign

A group of black pastors is rallying together in an attempt to decrease the support of President Barack Obama in black communities. Their efforts are largely a response to Obama’s same-sex marriage stance.

The Coalition of African-American Pastors, headed up by the Rev. William Owens, is hoping to “save the family” and “save our country.” Owens called the direction in which Obama is leading the country “a disgraceful road,” and referred to the President as Judas.

 

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WuDPBLJ9gqg&w=560&h=315]

 

The group claims to have 3,742 black pastors in its camp. Owens promises that the group will be as big as the President’s celebrity status.

“We are going to go nationwide with our agenda just like the president has gone to Hollywood,” he said.

Owens also doubts Obama’s commitment to helping the black community, noting that the President is “half-black, half-white.”

Owens, who actively participated in the civil rights movement, says that the comparison between the civil rights movement and same-sex marriage is nonsensical.

“The hijacking of the civil rights movement by homosexuals, bisexuals and gender-confused people must and will stop. There is no legitimate comparison between skin color and sexual behavior.”

The group is hoping to get 100,000 signatures in support of traditional marriage. Click here to sign.

Obama Campaign Struggling, President Funds It Himself

President Barack Obama took $5,000 out of his own pockets to donate to his campaign.

Democrats admit that Republicans have raised more money and that Obama’s re-election campaign has fallen behind in donations. The President gave on his own accord as a way to show that everyone needs to be willing to “pitch in.”

“On its own, what I gave won’t be enough to surmount the unprecedented fundraising we’ve seen on the other side, both from our opponent’s campaign and from the outside groups and special interests supporting him,” Obama wrote in an email to supporters. “But we have always believed that there’s nothing we can’t do when we all pitch in. That includes me.”

Obama’s $5,000 looks like a paltry sum compared to the funding dished out by Mitt and Ann Romney. Each donated $75,000 earlier in the year to the Romney Victory Fund.

Obama’s video of his charitable deed has resulted in criticism. One commenter on POLITICO wrote, “This guy is free and loose with trillions, but makes a big deal over the ‘symbolism’ behind $5K? Well, like communists, socialists are all about symbolism and making a big show of how ‘benevolent’ the leaders can be.”

Another reader aptly pointed out that the President’s contribution is less than the price of the stylish jacket the first lady recently donned at Buckingham Palace.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_W2pjZGRr_c&w=560&h=315]

Washington Pays Students To Go To School

There’s no reason for kids in Washington, D.C., to cut grass or wash cars this summer. The public school system is paying kids $5.25 an hour to attend summer school. The students being paid are those with poor grades.

Through the “Summer Bridge” program, about 300 students are receiving payment. The program is targeting ninth-graders who are “less likely than their peers to graduate high school within four years,” reported The Washington Examiner.

This isn’t the first time the school system has paid students; but in times past, students with good grades got the money. A Harvard University group paid middle school students between 2008 and 2010 for making good grades. But this time around, students with poor grades are raking in the cash.

“How much will we pay going forward, and who will we pay, and what’s the cutoff to get paid?” asked political consultant Chuck Thies. “It’s critical that we get at-risk students and underperforming students and failing students into the program, but I don’t think incentivizing them with money sends the right message.”

Teen Mob In Chicago Steals $3,000 Worth Of Jeans

A group of about 20 teens stormed a store in Wicker Park over the weekend, stealing about $3,000 worth of jeans. The shoplifting took place just days after Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel spoke about “Chicago values.”

The group of teens poured into the store about 6:40 p.m. on Saturday. The co-owner of Mildblend Supply Co., Luke Cho, knew the teens weren’t usual shoppers.

“At least I think I kind of maybe stopped the flow a little bit, but I quickly realized something bad’s about to happen, and I alerted my staff to call 911,” said Cho, who quickly locked the door.

The mob went straight for Nudie Jeans, a brand of jeans that cost about $200 a pair. Mildblend Supply Co. is one of the few clothing stores in the area that sells the jeans.

Authorities are currently trying to track down the thieving teens.

Emanuel made this comment about the event: “They’re looking into that.”

 

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uxf7zD_bZ0Y&w=420&h=315]

CNN Plays ‘Stupid Girls’ Before Palin Segment

On Sunday, CNN played the song “Stupid Girls” before a story about Sarah Palin. The snippet of the song contained the lyric, “Stupid girl, stupid girls, stupid girls, maybe if I act like that…”

The segment, covered by anchor Randi Kaye, was about Sarah Palin tweeting a picture of herself at Chick-fil-A. The tweet said, “Stopped by Chick-fil-A in the Woodlands to support a great business.”

Jazz Shaw wrote on Hot Air:

For the record, it’s my understanding that the hosts of these shows on the 24 hour cable news channels generally have nothing to do with the selection of the bumper music. That’s usually handled by the production staff, and a specific individual is frequently assigned to do nothing but select the musical cuts. CNN can — and probably will — easily say that it was all a coincidence and it might be hard to prove otherwise.

The most trusted name in news isn’t the only one that seems to be criticizing Palin. Former Vice-President Dick Cheney recently said he thought it was “a mistake” to put Palin on the ticket in 2008.

John McCain, as well as Cheney’s daughter, Liz Cheney, quickly came to Palin’s defense. McCain responded to the criticism with his own jab: “I respect the vice president. He and I had strong disagreements as to whether we should torture people or not.”

Libertarian Billboard Compares Obama To Batman Shooter

A billboard in Caldwell, Idaho, is causing an uproar. The highway advertisement compares President Barack Obama to alleged Batman shooter James Holmes. Attempts to get the billboard removed have been unsuccessful.

The billboard has the image of Holmes on one side with the message “Kills 12 in movie theater with assault rifle everyone freaks out.” On the other side is Obama’s picture with the message “Kills thousands with foreign policy wins Nobel Peace Prize.”

The controversial display was funded by a group honoring the late Libertarian Ralph Smeed. Maurice Clements, one of the individuals behind the billboard’s creation, said that America needs to be reminded that many have died during Obama’s Presidency.

“We’re all outraged over that killing in Aurora, Colo., but we’re not outraged over the boys killed in Afghanistan,” he said.

When asked about the opposition to the message, Clements admitted, “Maybe it was poorly done.”

After the shooting in Aurora, Colo., “The Dark Knight Rises” has been falling at the box office. “The Dark Knight,” the 2008 Batman movie, took in $533 million. So far, “The Dark Knight Rises” has generated $289.1 million.