Connect with us

Politics

Google Withdraws from Pentagon’s $10 Billion JEDI Warfighting Program

Acknowledging strong employee opposition and conflicting ethical issues, Google has dropped out of the competition for a $10 billion contract with the Pentagon.

Editor Team

Published

on

Arthur J. Villasanta – Fourth Estate Contributor

Mountain View, CA, United States (4E) – Acknowledging strong employee opposition and conflicting ethical issues, Google has dropped out of the competition for a $10 billion contract with the Pentagon.

Google said it withdrew from the lucrative “Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure” cloud (JEDI) program because it couldn’t receive assurances from the Pentagon the project won’t conflict with the firm’s Artificial Intelligence (AI) Principles.

According to these Principles, Google believe that AI should: 1. Be socially beneficial. 2. Avoid creating or reinforcing unfair bias. 3. Be built and tested for safety. 4. Be accountable to people. 5. Incorporate privacy design principles. 6. Uphold high standards of scientific excellence and 7. Be made available for uses that accord with these principles.

Sources said Google withdrew from the JEDI competition due to “sustained pressure” from its employees and others in the tech industry. The JEDI program is expected to award the full $10 billion contract to a single bidder.

With Google’s withdrawal, Amazon is now the leading contender due to its extensive experience as a cloud provider.

The Pentagon’s JEDI program is aimed at finding a solution that will allow the U.S. Armed Forces to transfer massive amounts of data and processing power to the cloud. JEDI will give military commanders quick access to data wherever they are. It will allow them to make quicker and better decisions while on the battlefield. Conflicts with Google’s principles 1, 4, 5 and 7 are already evident here.

Google crafted these AI Principles back in May to help guide it when figuring out which AI projects to develop and pursue. While it will still work with the U.S. military, the guidelines prohibit the use of AI in weaponry.

The company wrote its AI Principles after employees strongly opposed its contract renewal for a separate Pentagon program called Project Maven, which will develop algorithms that can flag drone images for human review.

More than 4,000 Google employees signed a petition asking the company to end its involvement with Project Maven. Many employees refused to work on Maven while some employees even quit in protest. The unexpectedly virulent opposition to Maven forced Google to forego renewing its contract with the Pentagon.

Article – All Rights Reserved.
Provided by FeedSyndicate

Invests are pleased to have a team of talented correspondents, who are able to bring you quality content on a daily basis. The editorial team cover every industry and have leading market experts from the stock market, ex military journalists, cryptocurrency to health and lifestyle. If it’s important to you it’s important to us and we’ve got the best in the business bringing it to you.

Politics

US Budget Deficit Hits Record $204.9B for November

The federal budget deficit surged to a record for the month of November of $204.9 billion, but a big part of the increase reflected a calendar quirk.

In its monthly budget report, the Treasury Department said Thursday that the deficit for November was $66.4 billion higher than the imbalance in November 2017.

Editor Team

Published

on

Washington, DC, United States (VOA) – The federal budget deficit surged to a record for the month of November of $204.9 billion, but a big part of the increase reflected a calendar quirk.

In its monthly budget report, the Treasury Department said Thursday that the deficit for November was $66.4 billion higher than the imbalance in November 2017.

But $44 billion of that figure reflected the fact that December benefits in many government entitlement programs were paid in November this year because Dec. 1 fell on a Saturday.

For the first two months of this budget year, the deficit totals $305.4 billion, up 51.4 percent from the same period last year. The Trump administration is projecting that this year’s deficit will top $1 trillion, reflecting increased government spending and the loss of revenue from a big tax cut.

The new report showed that the higher tariffs from President Donald Trump’s get-tough trade policies are showing up in the budget totals. Customs duties totaled $6 billion in November, up 99 percent from November 2017.

Trump has imposed penalty tariffs on steel and aluminum imports froma number ofcountries and on $250billionof Chinese imports as the administration seeks to apply pressure to other countries to reduce their barriers to American exports. However, China and other nations have retaliated by imposing penalty tariffs on U.S. exports, sparking a tit-for-tat trade war.

The administration still believes it will prevail and is currently in talks with China over trade practices the administration feels are unfair to American companies and workers.

Article – All Rights Reserved.
Provided by FeedSyndicate

Continue Reading

Politics

Criminal Probe Launched into Trump’s Inaugural Spending

Federal prosecutors based in Manhattan have launched a criminal probe to determine if $107 million in donations to then President-elect Donald Trump’s inaugural committee were illegally spent.

Editor Team

Published

on

Arthur J. Villasanta – Fourth Estate Contributor

Manhattan, NY, United States (4E) – Federal prosecutors based in Manhattan have launched a criminal probe to determine if $107 million in donations to then President-elect Donald Trump’s inaugural committee were illegally spent.

Investigators are also looking into whether some of the committee’s top spenders traded money for access to the incoming Trump administration. They also want to know if Trump’s people sought money in exchange for “policy concessions or to influence official administration positions.”

Giving money in exchange for political favors can run afoul of federal corruption laws. Diverting funds from Trump’s inaugural committee, which is a registered nonprofit, also violates federal law.

More specifically, Trump’s inaugural committee is being probed for accepting cash-for-access from Middle Eastern nations like Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the UAE. Secret recordings made by Trump’s personal lawyer Michael Cohen revealed these cash-for-access transactions.

Investigators are focusing on Middle Eastern donors like Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. They’re trying to determine if these nations used straw donors to disguise their donations to Trump’s inaugural committee and the pro-Trump super PAC, Rebuilding America Now, in hopes of buying influence.

Foreign nations are banned from contributing to federal campaigns, PACs and inaugural funds by law.

Federal prosecutors have questioned Richard Gates, ex-partner of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort. In February, Manafort pleaded guilty to conspiracy and lying charges lodged by special counsel Robert Mueller.

Gates served as deputy chairman of Trump’s inaugural committee. He’s cooperated with investigators in Mueller’s probe of Russian interference during the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

Article – All Rights Reserved.
Provided by FeedSyndicate

Continue Reading

Politics

China Beginning to Feel the Pain from Trump’s Trade War

China said its retail sales and industrial output growth for November badly missed their targets, confirming that China’s economy continues to slow down amid Trump’s trade war.

Editor Team

Published

on

Arthur J. Villasanta – Fourth Estate Contributor

Beijing, China (4E) – China said its retail sales and industrial output growth for November badly missed their targets, confirming that China’s economy continues to slow down amid Trump’s trade war.

China’s National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) reported that industrial output grew 5.4 percent year-on-year, the slowest pace in almost three years. This growth was also lower than the 5.9 percent analysts had predicted.

On the other hand, retail sales rose 8.1 percent, which is the weakest pace since 2003. This pace is also lower than the 8.8 percent analysts expected. November retail sales growth was down from 8.6 percent in October.

Fixed asset investment rose 5.9 percent from January to November, marginally higher than the 5.8 percent forecast by economists. FAI rose 5.7 percent from January to October.

Despite Trump’s trade war, data from China unexpectedly shows its economy on the upside for much of 2018. Manufacturing benefited from front-loading, or rushing to ship as much goods as possible, before tariff deadlines hit on Jan. 1, 2019.

The weaker Chinese data in November shows the positive impact of front-loading is beginning to vanish and that downward pressure on the Chinese economy is increasing, said RBC Capital Markets in Hong Kong. Industrial output and retail sales data released on Friday were ugly, said the firm.

NBS said after the release of the data that the impact from bilateral trade tensions with the U.S. was not yet obvious. So, the worst is yet to come and policymakers will be very worried, particularly with consumption growth falling off a cliff.

Article – All Rights Reserved.
Provided by FeedSyndicate

Continue Reading

Trending