Meeker’s Address on the State of USA Inc

Michael J De la Merced:

Ms. Meeker says that the country’s expenses — think programs like Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security — outstripped revenue by 56 percent. That compares with a difference, or what she calls net margin, of just 7 percent 15 years ago. And tax breaks exceeded $1 trillion last year, which she argues accounted for 83 percent of the deficit in cash flow.

Ms. Meeker adds a few more points to her latest USA Inc. presentation as well. She cites a Pew Research Center poll from December that showed that 49 percent of adults aged 18 years to 29 years viewed socialism favorably. And she points out that the United States tax code contains 859 times more words than the Constitution.

When It Comes to Security, We’re Back to Feudalism

Bruce Schneier:

Some of us have pledged our allegiance to Google: We have Gmail accounts, we use Google Calendar and Google Docs, and we have Android phones. Others have pledged allegiance to Apple: We have Macintosh laptops, iPhones, and iPads; and we let iCloud automatically synchronize and back up everything. Still others of us let Microsoft do it all. Or we buy our music and e-books from Amazon, which keeps records of what we own and allows downloading to a Kindle, computer, or phone. Some of us have pretty much abandoned e-mail altogether … for Facebook.

These vendors are becoming our feudal lords, and we are becoming their vassals. We might refuse to pledge allegiance to all of them – or to a particular one we don’t like. Or we can spread our allegiance around. But either way, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to not pledge allegiance to at least one of them.

Related: Mikko Hypponenn – Three Types of Online Attacks.