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Sunday Poll: Do You Think Credit Card Magnetic Strips Are As Secure As EMV Chip Cards?

June 9, 2019 Featured, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Do You Think Credit Card Magnetic Strips Are As Secure As EMV Chip Cards?
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Chances are good that every credit/debit card in your wallet now has a tiny EMV chip, something none of our cards had a decade ago. If you’re a merchant you’ve likely had to change credit card equipment to allow customers to insert their card rather than just swipe the magnetic strip on the back.

Card companies, like Visa, began requiring chip technology by shifting fraud liability:

Starting October 1, 2015, that liability for fraud shifts from the bank to the store in cases where the bank has provided an EMV credit card but the store has not upgraded to an EMV terminal. The logic behind this is that the credit card issuer did everything in its power to protect the consumer, and the store ultimately dropped the ball, so to speak. This creates the incentive for both the bank and the store to upgrade to EMV — so the bank can avoid refunding fraudulent transactions and the store can avoid losing money on fraudulent transactions. If neither the credit card nor the store is EMV-ready, then the traditional liability rules apply. (NerdWallet)

Our cards here in the US still have magnetic strips on the back, in many cases still there is no chip option — Metro’s ticket machines, for example.

Here’s today’s poll:

This poll will close at 8pm tonight. Wednesday I’ll have the results and more on magnetic strip vs EMV cards.

— Steve Patterson

 

Sunday Poll: Should Prior Marijuana Possession Convictions Be Expunged When A State Approves Recreational Use?

June 2, 2019 Drug Policy, Featured, Metro East, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Should Prior Marijuana Possession Convictions Be Expunged When A State Approves Recreational Use?
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On Friday the Illinois House passed a

https://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/legal-pot/illinois-poised-be-11th-state-legalize-recreational-marijuana-use-n1012721

https://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/legal-pot/illinois-poised-be-11th-state-legalize-recreational-marijuana-use-n1012721

recreational marijuana bill, it was approved by the Senate earlier in the week. When signed by Gov Preitzker Illinois will become the 11th state to legalize recreational marijuana — the first to do so through the legislative process instead of at the ballot.

One provision is the basis for today’s poll:

The governor will pardon past convictions for possession of up to 30 grams, with the attorney general going to court to expunge or delete public records of a conviction or arrest. For possession of 30 to 500 grams, an individual or a state’s attorney may petition the court to vacate and expunge the conviction, but prosecutors may object, with a judge to make the decision. [Chicago Tribune]

To save you doing the conversion:

  • 30 grams is 1.06 ounces
  • 500 grams is 17.6 ounces.

Ok, here’s today’s poll:

This poll will close at 8pm tonight.  I’ll share my thoughts on Wednesday morning.

— Steve Patterson

 

Sunday Poll: Should Roe v. Wade Be Overturned?

May 19, 2019 Featured, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Should Roe v. Wade Be Overturned?
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On Friday the Missouri House passed a restrictive abortion bill. Gov. Parsons is expected to sign it into law.

Missouri’s Republican-led House on Friday passed sweeping legislation designed to survive court challenges, which would ban abortions at eight weeks of pregnancy.

If enacted, the ban would be among the most restrictive in the U.S. It includes exceptions for medical emergencies, but not for pregnancies caused by rape or incest. Doctors would face five to 15 years in prison for violating the eight-week cutoff. Women who receive abortions wouldn’t be prosecuted.

Republican Gov. Mike Parson pledged to sign the bill , but it’s unclear when he’ll take action. When pressed on the lack of exceptions, he told reporters that “all life has value.” (Associated Press)

Missouri is not alone:

After a series of conservative appointments to the U.S. Supreme Court, a growing number of states have moved to drastically restrict access to abortion. Over the past few months, several states, including Missouri, Ohio and Georgia, have pursued “heartbeat” bills – legislation that would ban abortion as soon as a physician is able to detect a fetal heartbeat.

None of these new laws have yet gone into effect, and abortion is still legal in every state. Ivey herself admitted that the Alabama bill is likely “unenforceable” thanks to the 1973 Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision, which asserted that Americans have a fundamental right to an abortion until a fetus is viable. However, these bills are designed to provoke the Supreme Court to make a ruling that will weaken abortion protections, or to even overturn the landmark ruling. (Time)

The sponsor of Alabama’s law is up front about seeking to challenged the 1973 Supreme Court decision.

Alabama House Rep. Terri Collins, who sponsored the bill, told NBC News on Tuesday evening that legislators wanted to keep the bill’s text as clean as possible, specifically to address the language in Roe v. Wade, and revisit the question on whether a baby in the womb is considered a person. (NBC News)

Though Missouri’s fetal heartbeat law wasn’t designed as a challenge to Roe v Wade, it’ll end up in the courts like all the rest. At some point the nation’s highest court may again take up the issue. This is the topic for today’s poll.

Today’s poll will close at 8pm. Results and my thoughts on the subject Wednesday morning.

— Steve Patterson

 

Sunday Poll: ‘Climate Change’ Contributing to 2019 St. Louis Area Flooding?

May 12, 2019 Featured, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: ‘Climate Change’ Contributing to 2019 St. Louis Area Flooding?
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Local rivers are still in flood stage, but nothing like they were a week ago:

Local news cameras captured dramatic aerial images of the moment floodwaters breached a levee in St. Charles County. Footage of the raging water surging over the Elm Point Levee in St. Charles County astounded those watching in the KSDK newsroom as one of the station’s news choppers broadcast images back to the control room. The station posted the video of the breach on Twitter. According to KSDK, the Elm Point Levee is situated between the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers, both of which are experiencing flooding.

FOX2 posted similar footage on social media showing the Elm Point breach along with a breach of the levee at the nearby Sand Fort Creek. Raw footage sent back from the FOX2 news chopper showed rising floodwaters inundating various buildings, including one that appeared to be leaking oil.

St. Charles County officials advised West Alton residents to evacuate due to the current Mississippi River crest projection of 35.5 feet on Monday. While the water levels in some areas along the Mississippi river are falling, many communities saw continued cresting in Missouri, according to the NWS office in St. Louis. (AccuWeather)

Today’s poll is simple, is this usual Spring flooding or is Climate Change a contributing factor?

Today’s poll will close at 8pm

— Steve Patterson

 

Sunday Poll: Are Local Governments Corrupt Because We Often Elect Democrats?

May 5, 2019 Featured, St. Louis County, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Are Local Governments Corrupt Because We Often Elect Democrats?
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Local politics was rocked last week. On Monday Steve Stenger, just re-elected to a 2nd term in November 2018, resigned as St  Louis County Executive.  I posted about it on Facebook, one of the first comments was:

”How many crooked democrats does it take to ruin a city? Hard to say since idiots keep reelecting them.”

On Friday Stenger pled guilty.

Former St. Louis County Executive Steve Stenger pleaded guilty Friday to three counts of public corruption for steering county contracts to campaign donors andfaces prison time when he is sentenced in August.

Based on the offense level calculated in his guilty plea under federal guidelines, Stenger could get around three to four years in prison. Judge Catherine Perry emphasized she’s not bound by those guidelines, and set Stenger’s sentencing for Aug. 9. He will also be required to pay restitution. Although the exact amount isn’t clear it could be several hundred thousand dollars. The maximum sentence is 20 years and a $250,000 fine on each count.

Perry accepted Stenger’s guilty plea on charges of bribery, mail fraud and theft of honest services. The 44-page indictment made public on Monday accused Stenger of steering county contracts to his campaign donors and political supporters.

The week and comments I saw in various places helped me decide on the poll for today.

Today’s non-scientific poll will automatically close at 8pm tonight.  Results and my thoughts on the subject Wednesday morning.

— Steve Patterson

 

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