Monday, August 16, 2021

Infrastructure Bill Could Enable Government To Track Drivers' Travel Data


Close to 50% of US Workers Can’t Afford to Rent One Bedroom Housing

An update on the already desperate and worsening state of the market for renters in the US.

  • By Joe Tidy
  • Cyber reporter 
US dollar bills and coins symbolising Bitcoins


"Follow the money" - for generations it's been the mantra of investigators looking for criminals.

In the cyber-realm, this battle between criminals and the authorities has been raging for years.

Despite the anonymous nature of cryptocurrencies, dozens of cyber-criminals have been caught in the last two years thanks to new techniques able to track their funds around the cryptocurrency blockchain - a public list of all transactions between wallets.

But could the tide be turning?

from the mass-surveillance dept.
Presto Vivace shares a report from The Intercept: The Senate's $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill proposes a national test program that would allow the government to collect drivers' data in order to charge them per-mile travel fees. The new revenue would help finance the Highway Trust Fund, which currently depends mostly on fuel taxes to support roads and mass transit across the country. Under the proposal, the government would collect information about the miles that drivers travel from smartphone apps, another on-board device, automakers, insurance companies, gas stations, or other means. For now, the initiative would only be a test effort -- the government would solicit volunteers who drive commercial and passenger vehicles -- but the idea still raises concerns about the government tracking people's private data. 
Why Italy Might See a Worker Co-operative Boom Grassroots Economic Organizing

Bloomberg, Ledecky May Owe U.S. $44,000 in Taxes for Olympics Glory:

As the Olympic flame goes out in Tokyo on Sunday, marking the end of the 2020 Games, swimming phenom Katie Ledecky and pole vaulting sensation Katie Nageotte will both be leaving with gold.

A hefty tax bill awaits back in the U.S., but only for one of them.

Ledecky, now the most decorated female swimmer of all time, likely owes the U.S. government about $44,000 from her two gold and two silver medal wins. That estimate is based on her lucrative corporate sponsorships and the prize money attached to her medals.

Nageotte, who won gold in women’s pole vaulting, likely won’t pay any taxes on her winnings, thanks to a special exemption for those with more modest financial success.

Olympic medals don’t have much intrinsic value, fluctuating from up to $700 for a gold to about $5 for a bronze, depending on the market prices of their component metals. But that isn’t the focus of the Internal Revenue Service. Rather, it’s the prize money the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee awards its medalists. ...

Winnings are treated as income for federal tax purposes, under Section 74 of the Internal Revenue Code. For top-earning athletes like Ledecky, who makes over a million dollars a year in endorsements according to a report in the Washington Post, total prize money is subject to the top-marginal tax rate of 37%.

Nageotte, on the other hand, is spared paying tax by an Obama-era law (H.R.5946) that exempts athletes making less than $1 million in total income after deductions from the so-called “victory tax.”

Pandemic plunges families into food poverty in world’s rich economies FT


Pandemic set off deadly rise in speeding that hasn’t stopped AP

Big Tech call center workers face pressure to accept home surveillance NBC

Taliban edges closer to Afghanistan capital Kabul, launches attacks on key northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif

Posted updated 
A group of men dresses in Afghan clothing with guns on an empty city street.
Insurgents have captured much of northern, western and southern Afghanistan.