Oops, They Did It Again!

Despite having nearly an entire month to get their act together, Sony’s apparently still wearing their security pants down around their ankles.

Sony Hacked Yet Again

Hard as it may be to believe, Sony has been hacked yet again.

According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, So-net Entertainment Corp., a Japanese ISP owned by the technology giant, said that hackers accessed its customer rewards site earlier this week and stole customers’ redeemable gift points worth about $1,225.

The incident is the latest in a weeks-long string of hacks and breaches of security for Sony. The trouble began on April 19, when the company began investigating and ultimately discovered a massive breach of security on its PlayStation Network, a cyberscandal that compromised the personal information of more than 100 million users.

See also:
Sony’s Security Nightmare Not Over, Hacked Again
Fresh security glitch adds to Sony’s woes
Sony hit again with two hacks
Sony hacked twice in one day, this time $1225 was stolen from accounts in Japan
Sony subsidiary So-net reports data breach
Yep, Looks Like Sony’s Been Hacked Again
Sony Faces Another Hack Attack
Sony hacked again
Sony Hacked Again, Server Hosting Credit Card Phishing Site
Do You Own A Sony HackStation?

And if all this hacking wasn’t bad enough . . .

Sony Can’t Guarantee PlayStation Network Security

Sony CEO Howard Stringer says he cannot guarantee the security of his company’s videogame network. . . . maintaining security is a “never-ending process,” and he cannot say that anyone is “100 percent secure.”

/not exactly confidence inspiring, I’ll be taking a pass on Sony products for the foreseeable future

Advertisements

So, How’s That Surge Working Out?

It seems that it’s not going particularly well, according to the U.N..

Afghan Security Deteriorates

Internal United Nations maps show a marked deterioration of the security situation in Afghanistan during this year’s fighting season, countering the Obama administration’s optimistic assessments of military progress since the surge of additional American forces began a year ago.

The Wall Street Journal was able to view two confidential “residual risk accessibility” maps, one compiled by the U.N. at the annual fighting season’s start in March 2010 and another at its tail end in October. The maps, used by U.N. personnel to gauge the dangers of travel and running programs, divide the country’s districts into four categories: very high risk, high risk, medium risk and low risk.

In the October map, just as in March’s, nearly all of southern Afghanistan—the focus of the coalition’s military offensives—remained painted the red of “very high risk,” with no noted improvements. At the same time, the green belt of “low risk” districts in northern, central and western Afghanistan shriveled.

The U.N.’s October map upgraded to “high risk” 16 previously more secure districts in Badghis, Sar-e-Pul, Balkh, Parwan, Baghlan, Samangan, Faryab, Laghman and Takhar provinces; only two previously “high risk” districts, one in Kunduz and one in Herat province, received a safer rating.

See also:
Revealed: The classified maps that show Afghanistan is becoming more dangerous… with number of high risk areas spreading
Reports Offer Conflicting Takes on Afghan Security
UN charts escalation of violence in Afghanistan
U.N. maps indicate that security in Afghanistan has eroded since troop surge
Violence in Afghanistan rising not falling
UN maps show security worsening in Afghanistan: report
U.N. maps belie claims of Afghan progress
UN map reveals ‘no noted improvements’ in Afghan security

Today we can be proud that there are fewer areas under Taliban control and more Afghans have a chance to build a more hopeful future,” Mr. Obama told American troops during a visit to the Bagram Air Field northeast of Kabul earlier this month.

Well, it’s obvious that someone is lying here. The Taliban can’t control more and less territory at the same time.

/but, between Obama and the U.N., I’m not sure who to believe

Obama’s New Plan To Disarm Iran . . . Disarm Israel!

What “smart diplomacy” bull[expletive deleted] is this? Let’s see if I can follow this farcical insanity. Obama is negotiating with Egypt, to eliminate Israel’s nuclear weapons, without consulting Israel, so that Iran will voluntarily give up her nuclear program, an imaginary miracle that’s never going to happen. Is that about it?

Report: US, Egypt negotiate Mideast nuclear-free zone

US officials are in talks with Egypt over a plan to make the Middle East a nuclear-free zone, part of an effort to block the Iranian nuclear program, The Wall Street Journal reported Saturday.

Citing unnamed US officials, the newspaper said the White House wanted to build on a non-binding agreement that emerged from a 1995 UN review of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

That agreement had designated the region as a zone free of weapons of mass destruction: The aim now was to promote a Middle East nuclear weapons-free zone, which would include Israel, the Arab states, Iran and Turkey.

The US administration was also seeking a conference on the subject.

US officials said talks with Egypt would resume in New York in the coming month during the month-long nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) review conference, the paper said.

“We’ve made a proposal to them that goes beyond what the US has been willing to do before,” the Journal quotes one senior US official as saying.

See also:
U.S. Revises Tack on Mideast Arms
Israel will top agenda at United Nations nuclear non-proliferation conference
‘ME may become nuke-free zone’
US, Egypt negotiate Mideast nuclear-free zone: report
Nuclear-free Mideast key to settling Iran nuclear issue: Egypt
A nuclear-free region?
Israel, Arabs in conflict over nuclear free zone
Iran Hopes to Shift Focus to Israel at U.N. Nuclear Conference
Obama Faces Trap at U.N. In Demarche by Egypt On Nuclear Arms
Report: Egypt Asks UN to Pressure Israel on Nukes
The crux of Islam’s hatred against the Jews

Hey Obama, [expletive deleted] you! Why don’t you shove your “Middle East Nuclear Weapons-Free Zone” up your [expletive deleted] ass zone! Why the [expletive deleted] should Israel give up her nuclear weapons, WHEN ALL HER MIDDLE EASTERN NEIGHBORS DON’T EVEN RECOGNIZE ISRAEL’S RIGHT TO EXIST AND ROUTINELY CALL FOR ISRAEL’S DESTRUCTION?

Again, [expletive deleted] you Obama, why don’t you start with something simple, yet impossible, you know, the basics? Convince all your precious little Muslim allies to renounce their generational religious and societal ingrained irrational Jew hatred.

/until then, DON’T [EXPLETIVE DELETED] WITH ISRAEL, ASSHOLE!

Get Out And Vote Republicans!

Especially if you live in New Jersey, let’s try and keep the results out of the margin of fraud.

Christie leads

Chris Christie leads Jon Corzine 47-41 in PPP’s final poll of the New Jersey Governor’s race, with Chris Daggett at 11%.

Corzine had pulled to within a point of Christie on our poll three weeks ago after trailing by as many as 14 points over the summer, but his momentum has stalled since then and Christie’s built his lead back up to 4 points last week and now 6.

But, of course, if you’re a Republican in New Jersey, you already know that a six point lead against a Democrat candidate might not be safe.

Chris Christie’s Next Case: Who Stole My Election?

The race for governor in New Jersey is so close in final polls that it may well end up in a recount — the 1981 election did and was decided by less than 1,800 votes. If there is a recount, you can bet disputes about absentee ballots will loom large. Moreover, if serious allegations of fraud emerge, you can also expect less-than-vigorous investigation by the Obama Justice Department — which showed just how seriously it takes such allegations when it walked away from an open-and-shut voter intimidation case against the New Black Panther Party in Philadelphia earlier this year.

Plenty of reasons exist for suspecting absentee fraud may play a significant role in tomorrow’s Garden State contests. Groups associated with Acorn in neighboring Pennsylvania and New York appear to have moved into the state. An independent candidate for mayor in Camden has already leveled charges that voter fraud is occurring in his city. Meanwhile, the Democratic Party in New Jersey is taking advantage of a new loosely written vote-by-mail law to pressure county clerks not to vigorously use signature checks to evaluate the authenticity of absentee ballots, the only verification procedure allowed.

The state has received a flood of 180,000 absentee ballot requests. On some 3,000 forms the signature doesn’t match the one on file with county clerks. Yet citing concerns that voters would be disenfranchised, Democratic Party lawyer Paul Josephson wrote New Jersey’s secretary of state asking her “to instruct County Clerks not to deny applications on the basis of signature comparison alone.” Mr. Josephson maintained that county clerks “may be overworked and are likely not trained in handwriting analysis” and insisted that voters with suspect applications should be allowed to cast provisional ballots. Those ballots, of course, would then provide a pool of votes that would be subject to litigation in any recount, with the occupant of New Jersey’s highest office determined by Florida 2000-style scrutiny of ballot applications.

The cheaters are making a full court press.

ACORN Aims to Tip New Jersey Election in Corzine’s Favor

Fearing a potentially devastating Democratic loss, the highly controversial Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) group and its affiliated organizations are gearing up to tip the scales and re-elect embattled incumbent in the hard-fought New Jersey gubernatorial race, sources tell Newsmax.

“Acorn is heavily involved in Gov. Jon Corzine’s get-out-the-vote operation, but is maintaining a low profile at the insistence of the Corzine campaign,” Matthew Vadum, senior editor of the conservative Capitol Research Center think tank, tells Newsmax. “If Corzine manages to win reelection, he doesn’t want the victory tainted by his close association with Acorn.”

Wall Street Journal columnist and author John Fund wrote Tuesday that “Plenty of reasons exist for suspecting absentee fraud may play a significant role in tomorrow’s Garden State contests.”

See also:
GOP challenger edges ahead of Corzine in NJ
Bettors Split Between Corzine-Christie in New Jersey
Can Christie Beat the Other Boys In Jersey?
President Obama Robocalls for Gov. Corzine in New Jersey

And don’t forget to vote in New York 23.

Hoffman Leads in Upstate N.Y. House Race, but Many Undecided

In the upstate New York House race that has attracted national attention, Doug Hoffman, the Conservative Party candidate now embraced by the GOP, leads Democrat Bill Owens by 41 percent to 36 percent with 6 percent backing Republican Assemblywoman Dede Scozzafava, who dropped out of the race on Saturday, according to a Siena College poll conducted Nov. 1. Eighteen percent are undecided, The margin of error is 4 points.

The number of undecided voters is now double what it was in Siena’s last poll, when Scozzafava was still in the race.

“Hoffman continues to demonstrate momentum, picking up six points since Scozzafava pulled out,” said Siena’s Steven Greenberg. “It appears, however, that the majority of Scozzafava’s supporters have gone to neither Hoffman nor Owens, but rather into the undecided column.”

Showdown Alarms

The NY-23 special election on Tuesday has the attention of the White House at the highest levels, with White House sources saying that the endorsement of Democrat Bill Owens by “Republican” Dede Scozzafava came only after a call from White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel asking that she throw her support behind the Democrat.

NY 23, are you going to let the Obama White House control your Republican candidates?

See also:
GOP watch: Chaos in NY-23
Congressional Roundup: NY-23 edition
Last-minute NY 23rd poll: Conservative Doug Hoffman surges, but …

Ain’t but one Republican still in the NY 23 race, vote accordingly.

And, if you live in Virginia, you can phone the win in, but you still have to actually get off your collective Republican asses and vote for McDonnell, nuke the election from orbit, just to make sure.

/finally, if you’re a Democrat, remember, you get to vote on Wedbesday, 11/4/09

Heavy Meddle

This is your government going way too far.

BofA Urged by Regulators to Revamp Board of Directors

Federal officials have pressured Bank of America Corp. to revamp its board by bringing in directors with more banking experience, as regulators place the bank under increasingly heavy government scrutiny.

The move represents unusual influence by the federal government over the workings of a financial institution in which it doesn’t own a stake. It’s particularly significant because many of the bank’s woes stem from its purchase of Merrill Lynch & Co. — an acquisition that was completed after heavy prodding by federal regulators. The Merrill deliberations were the beginning of regulators’ deepening involvement in the Charlotte, N.C., lender’s day-to-day operations.

The moves underscore the balancing act faced by the federal government as it tries to steer the banking sector through its crisis while also involved in a broader pattern of engagement in the operations of individual U.S. banks.

On May 7, a week after the Bank of America board named Walter Massey to replace Chief Executive Kenneth Lewis as chairman, Mr. Massey unveiled a committee to recommend changes to the board’s structure and size. The committee would also oversee the bank’s response to a federal “stress test” that showed the need for $33.9 billion in additional equity.

Prior to those moves, federal banking regulators — the Federal Reserve and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency — had signaled to the bank’s leadership that such steps would be well received by the federal government. Government officials also suggested that the task of reshuffling the board be led by independent directors, and that the board needed more members with banking experience.

See also:
WSJ: Gov’t pressuring Bank of America board change
Pressure is increasing on Bank of America’s Lewis
Regulators urge Bank of America board overhaul
Bank of America Under Pressure

So, after bullying Ken Lewis into buying Merrill Lynch for much more than it was worth, which got Bank of America into financial trouble in the first place, now that same government is trying to tell BofA who can be on their board of directors. Nevermind that Bank of America shareholders just elected the board of directors at their annual meeting on April 29th. The government has absolutely no business sticking it’s nose into the internal affairs of a publicly traded corporation that it owns absolutely no stock in. And I don’t care that the government has loaned Bank of America money either, money that, by the way, Bank of America hopes to repay within a matter of months, that doesn’t make the government a shareholder, entitled to make decisions about who should run the company.

This big brother government interference in the private sector just has to stop and the sooner the better, before Obama and company get more than just there noses into the corporate tent. Hopefully, Bank of America will just say no and not cave in to the government pressure or maybe it will take a shareholder lawsuit to rebuff the nosy camel. In any case, someone needs to put their foot down while there still is something resembling a private sector and free markets.

/seriously, government encroachment like this should scare the [expletive deleted] out of everyone who still believes there is such a thing as capitalism