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Joe Blow is a privacy advocate with proven subspecialties in strategic planning.  Note: Pirate Poop is now a free newsletter, available by email only. Send all subscription requests to joeblow073@yahoo.com

 

 

 

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Columns by Joe Blow

The Invisible Pirate - Defeating Spyware
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Joe Blow 2005-07-27 15:00
This edition covers several recommended methods of defeating spyware. Surfing the web (anonymously or otherwise) should be a pleasurable pastime, not a tribulation that must be endured as your computer slows to a crawl, and finally becomes totally useless. If you can relate to the latter situation and would much prefer the former, this edition is for you.
The Invisible Pirate - Stealth Surfing for Dummies
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Joe Blow 2005-07-27 15:00
This edition covers anonymous surfing for those who would rather not dig too deeply into the nuts and bolts of the issue. As a matter of fact, these two methods should both be classified as idiot-proof; it matters not if you are lazy, ignorant, or just plain stupid. Even the digitally challenged can easily master these methods. I recently spent over a week online, researching and testing numerous...
The Invisible Pirate - Information Security
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Joe Blow 2005-07-26 15:00
This edition covers file encryption, secure passwords, cleaning your computer, and a very comprehensive system utility that will keep your computer happy so that you won't lose any personal files or information. I am amazed that some people religiously change the oil in their car, but they never conduct any maintenance on their computer. Inevitably, they end up with long faces after their young...
The Invisible Pirate - Surf Anonymously
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Joe Blow 2005-07-25 15:00
This edition briefly covers several free methods of surfing the web anonymously. They include: anonymizer websites, high anonymous public proxy servers, JAP, and Tor. These methods will all slow down your surfing, but just like in the real world, TANSTAAFL online. (See Robert A. Heinlein's novel, The Moon is a Harsh Mistress.)
The Invisible Pirate
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Joe Blow 2005-07-24 15:00
This edition includes several easy methods of securing your email. I recommend trying them all. CoolFish and A-Lock allow you to continue to use your normal email client. AnonMail is a good web-based method. The Comodo solution is for those who just want a quick and easy method. The only method below that comes close to being truly anonymous is AnonMail, but all of these methods will provide you...
Freedom and Privacy: R.I.P.
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Joe Blow 2005-06-05 15:00
I recently decided what I want to be when I grow up. I always knew that decision could only be made when I was finally ready, after years of pondering, reflection, and introspection. I determined that all of the roads I have traveled have led me to the same destination, a very natural selection, and the only one that makes sense for me. I am going to be a retired, invisible pirate. This may...
Privacy and Freedom Cost $100
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Joe Blow 2004-10-24 15:00
As a thrifty individualist, I was recently shocked to discover the high cost of a piece of paper today. That's the bad news. The good news is that this particular piece of paper buys you both privacy and freedom ' for only $100. If that isn't a bargain, I don't know what is. If you don't have one of these magic pieces of paper, you need to get one, soon. Oddly enough, this magic piece of paper...
Get a Life
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Joe Blow 2004-08-15 15:00
It has become increasingly obvious to me that many American adults today have no life. Legally, they may still be alive, but only at the most basic level of human existence, as hosts for the vampires of society. This situation allows very little time for a personal life. These adults are too busy catering to the whims, desires, demands, and needs of others to concern themselves with the truth...
Trust No One
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Joe Blow 2004-07-26 15:00
'The X-Files' main message was correct; you ignore it at your peril. One of history's many lessons is that betrayal is a fact of life. Both individuals and collectives perpetrate betrayals, but by far the worst offender is the State, which includes the agencies that spring up to support it. State agents run State agencies. They not only believe in the State, they also stand to profit from it,...
Democracy and Schutzhaft
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Joe Blow 2004-06-28 15:00
Democracy L. Paul Bremer couldn't wait to grab a flight out of Baghdad . Reportedly, he immediately headed for the airport upon transfer of partial sovereignty to Iraqi interim Prime Minister Iyad Allawi. The surprise ceremony was over before it was even announced. In less than two hours, Bremer was airborne and homeward bound. That's the good news. The bad news is that nothing has changed and...
Time, Distance and Shielding
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Joe Blow 2004-06-27 15:00
My previous article, 'Identities and Aliases', generated several concerns from readers. This article addresses some of those concerns and includes several very simple methods to protect your privacy, Hiibel and Terry notwithstanding. Disclaimer: I am not an attorney and this is not legal advice. If you have specific questions, I suggest you consult a competent attorney, if you can find one....
Identities and Aliases
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Joe Blow 2004-06-22 15:00
The recent Supreme Court verdict in Hiibel regarding Terry stops raises some interesting questions that not only need to be asked, they need to be seriously considered and then answered on an individual basis in order to be fully prepared when the unexpected occurs. Sometime, somewhere a police officer may approach you, detain you, and ask you to identify yourself. What will you do? What will you...
Dubya: Herbert Hoover II?
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Joe Blow 2004-03-30 15:00
I noted with interest President George W. Bush's recent call for affordable high-speed Internet access for all Americans by 2007. The resemblance to Herbert Hoover's 1928 slogan of a 'chicken in every pot' was simply too much to ignore. While these may seem to be unrelated issues, to those who know anything about American political history, this was a spooky pronouncement, with an ominous outlook...
Tribalism: Child of Diversity
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Joe Blow 2004-02-29 16:00
What we are seeing in America is the emergence of tribalism, the child of diversity. The two-party political system of old is ancient history. The mold has been broken. We are seeing the first ripple of disaffection for politics, due to too many special interest groups, chronic overspending, no accountability, and the influence of big money. When you add the new dimension ' ideological...
Uncle Mike
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Joe Blow 2004-02-26 16:00
Recently, I spent one class period discussing current events with my public high school students. This wasn't planned, but the scheduled event was rained out so I substituted an impromptu review of the news. We bounced around the world with me asking them questions, hoping that someone would know something about world events. As usual, most of them were clueless. After teaching for almost nine...
The Brian Finkel Case
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Joe Blow 2004-01-08 16:00
The more I read about this case the more upset I get. It should be taught in private schools as a required case study of the end result of mixing humans with the devices of the State: democracy, voting, judicial tyranny, socialism, special interests, irresponsibility, and victimhood as a way of life. I haven't seen a more glaring example of what the State produces in years. If you are unfamiliar...
Congress to Jump-Start the IRS?
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Joe Blow 2004-01-05 16:00
When the people fear the government, tyranny has found victory. ~ Thomas Jefferson John Cochran writes, 'Congress is concerned by a new report that indicates tax evaders no longer fear the IRS.' Apparently, some people have seen the light at the end of the tunnel. 'The result is billions of dollars are lost to the U.S. treasury ' billions that put more of a burden on honest people who do pay...
Wal-Mart: Immoral Monster?
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Joe Blow 2004-01-04 16:00
Some sheeple are up in arms again, this time over low retail prices on everyday goods. If one listens to their pleas, you will hear that Wal-Mart is an immoral monster and all of its stores should be run out of town on a rail yesterday, if not sooner. Lower prices, great selection, ready availability, pervasive presence, a state-of-the-art ordering, delivery, and payment system, and a no-...
Rise of the American KGB
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Joe Blow 2003-11-23 16:00
Richard Willing writes, 'DNA profiles from hundreds of thousands of juvenile offenders and adults arrested but not convicted of crimes could be added to the FBI's national DNA crime-fighting program under a proposed law moving through Congress. [Emphasis mine.]
Skype: Sliced Bread or Snake Oil?
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Joe Blow 2003-10-13 15:00
Have you been Skyped yet? If you already have an Internet connection, there's probably only one thing keeping you from free, worldwide, computer 'phone' calls'a microphone to plug into your sound card. No worries, if you have a newer computer you may already have one without knowing it. Check inside your computer box; your mic may be just waiting for you to plug it in and start calling for free....
Chains of Slavery
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Joe Blow 2003-09-28 15:00
Political parties ' comprised of incumbents, candidates, voters, agendas, special interests, and platforms ' are the tools that the State uses to forge the chains of slavery for its citizens. The popular fiction of differences between political parties also perpetuates the enduring myth that citizens have only one means of governing themselves ' by voting for a proxy. Not only is this notion...
Fascists Everywhere
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Joe Blow 2003-07-01 15:00
You can't get away from these tyrants; no matter how hard you try. They are everywhere, they seem to breed like rabbits, and the sheeple of this nation are in love with them. Who are these people? Fascists. In the past five days alone I have encountered more of these episodes than I can stomach. The first started out innocently enough, but rapidly degenerated. My children asked me to purchase a...
1984 or Brave New World?
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Joe Blow 2003-06-24 15:00
George Orwell, born Eric Blair on June 25, 1903 , would turn 100 this week had he not died in 1950 at the age of 47. On the anniversary of his birth, it seems fitting to briefly compare his 1948 dystopian warning of the future, 1984, to that of his one-time teacher, Aldous Huxley, who had written his own prophecy, Brave New World, in 1931.
New American Empire: Before the Fall
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Joe Blow 2003-06-08 15:00
This is an attempt to peer into the future over the next 70 years, developed over several weeks in April 2003 in collaboration with JCN, who provided valuable insights into the EU dimension. It presents a very condensed version of an enjoyable series of extended online discussions. 'Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before the fall.' ~ Proverbs 16:18 Abstract
Whither Free Will?
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Joe Blow 2003-05-29 15:00
free will n. 1. The ability or discretion to choose; free choice. 2. The power, attributed esp. to human beings, of making free choices that are unconstrained by external circumstances or by necessity. ~ The American Heritage Dictionary, Second College Edition, c. 1982