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A misleading TV business, massive modifications to your credit score rating, bitcoin miners and extra

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A number of shopper tidbits right here. Let’s begin with The Watchdog’s nomination for many misleading native political TV business of 2022:

The assault advert from state Rep. Stephanie Klick, R-Fort Value, towards challenger David Lowe within the current Republican major runoff baffled me.

Each time I noticed it — and I noticed it no less than two dozen instances — the advert confused me as a result of Klick portrayed Lowe as a supporter of abortion rights. I didn’t perceive. How may any abortion rights advocate make it to a runoff within the Republican major?

Within the advert, Lowe is heard saying in a podcast interview, “I’m keen to face on the Home flooring and vote no to any pro-life invoice.”

That’s clear sufficient, proper?

Probably not. Seems Klick’s advert reduce off the rest of Lowe’s comment, through which he criticized Republican lawmakers for regulating abortion as a substitute of abolishing it fully.

To abolish abortion, he stated, “I might be keen to provide my life to get this handed. And I might.” She left that half out.

Slicing a quote so its which means is modified — whether or not it’s in a film advert, in journalism or in political advertisements — is fallacious.

Klick advised me if Lowe voted “no” on abortion payments, as he stated, as a result of they weren’t sturdy sufficient, he’d be saving abortion slightly than stopping it.

Lowe stated, “It’s unhappy to see how low she goes simply to retain energy.”

Gov. Greg Abbott with state Rep. Stephanie Klick on May 17, 2022. Klick was in a GOP runoff...
Gov. Greg Abbott with state Rep. Stephanie Klick on Might 17, 2022. Klick was in a GOP runoff on the time. Watchdog Dave Lieber calls her out on an inexpensive trick in a TV advert towards her opponent.(Elias Valverde II / Employees Photographer)

Crypto-mining shutdowns?

Are you fearful about cryptocurrency miners utilizing an excessive amount of electrical energy after we want all the ability we are able to muster?

Bitcoin miners have arrange 1000’s of high-powered servers that we’re advised use sufficient electrical energy to energy a metropolis.

Readers are asking The Watchdog if cryptocurrency miners are shutting down their machines when Texas grid operator ERCOT requires conservation. So I checked.

Public Utility Fee spokesperson Wealthy Parsons despatched me to Texas grid operator ERCOT for solutions.

ERCOT’s media division provided a press release: Throughout a current mid-Might conservation warning interval, companies of every type voluntarily diminished power use.

ERCOT advisable that I step exterior of presidency for extra info by contacting Texas Industrial Power Shoppers (which didn’t reply to my emails) and the Texas Blockchain Council, a commerce affiliation. (I can’t keep in mind the final time a state company despatched me to a commerce affiliation for public info.)

I checked in with council president Lee Bratcher. Final month he issued a press release saying that “some services shut down whereas many will ramp down within the afternoons this weekend when energy is in excessive demand, however then flip again on in a single day.”

Miners are presupposed to get ERCOT’s permission to hook up with the Texas grid. The one information I may discover is that an ERCOT activity pressure has been created to guard the grid as miners flood to the state to arrange operations.

Let’s hope Texas regulators get extra actively concerned in defending present prospects earlier than worrying about these power-hogging miners.

Cowtown computing

Fort Value now claims to be the primary U.S. metropolis to arrange its personal cryptocurrency mining operation.

Whereas true miners have 1000’s of machines operating, Fort Value has solely three, which had been donated by the Texas Blockchain Council. Fort Value officers say that every of those machines makes use of “the identical quantity of power as a family vacuum cleaner.”

Metropolis spokesperson Carlo Capua advised one resident in a letter proven to me that the mission is a “very small-scale pilot program to have the ability to higher perceive the implications and alternatives of mining bitcoin.”

On this, we’re advised it takes the quantity of electrical energy you utilize in your house for 2 months to supply one bitcoin.

In this 2021 photo Frisco resident Ishaan Thakur, 14, explains how he is mining...
On this 2021 photograph Frisco resident Ishaan Thakur, 14, explains how he’s mining cryptocurrency with computer systems in his storage to make cash for school. The town of Fort Value can also be constructing a mini-cryptocurrency mining setup as a part of a pilot program, Watchdog Dave Lieber experiences. It is probably the primary metropolis to take action.(Stewart F. Home / Particular Contributor)

Newest on robocalls

On unlawful spam and robocalls, Federal Communications Chair Jessica Rosenworcel’s proposal to cease unlawful overseas callers from utilizing U.S. phone networks — known as gateways — has been adopted.

Will it work? I’m skeptical, however hopeful. Sadly, lots of my junk calls sound as in the event that they’re calling from throughout the U.S.

The FCC is trying something new to stop spam calls from overseas, Watchdog Dave Lieber reports.
The FCC is making an attempt one thing new to cease spam calls from abroad, Watchdog Dave Lieber experiences.(Dreamstime / TNS)

Cease junk charges

The U.S. Client Monetary Safety Bureau has declared warfare on junk charges, that are charges you study after you’ve got agreed to purchase one thing. These hidden charges make it tougher to comparability store.

Instance: You buy a brand new automotive and the salesperson tries to promote you a service guarantee or an add-on like window etching.

The bureau says junk charges significantly hurt individuals of colour as a result of they’re extra more likely to be taken benefit of. Banks and bank card corporations are main culprits, the bureau states. However you additionally discover these charges in live performance tickets and retail electrical energy firm choices.

Hey, Fb. Anybody house?

A front-page story in The Wall Road Journal experiences that our main social media corporations don’t supply customer support desks, which makes it extremely troublesome for some to revive locked-out or hacked accounts.

The Journal cited Fb, Instagram, TikTok, Twitter and WhatsApp as chief culprits the place you may’t discover a human to speak to.

My thought: Corporations that massive and highly effective should supply prospects a human voice to unravel issues. Life is difficult sufficient if you lose entry to your account. This selfishness is unacceptable.

Facebook and other social media companies should offer help desks to customers, Watchdog...
Fb and different social media corporations ought to supply assist desks to prospects, Watchdog Dave Lieber says.(The Related Press)

Bettering your credit score rating

The Equifax, Experian and TransUnion trio of nationwide credit score reporting companies have introduced they’ve agreed to necessary modifications when reporting medical debt assortment.

Based on a letter I acquired from Equifax, the time interval earlier than unpaid medical debt will seem on a credit score report will enhance from six months to a 12 months. This offers shoppers extra time to repay earlier than getting a ding on their credit score rating.

By 2023, medical debt beneath $500 will now not be included on credit score experiences.

The big three credit bureaus are changing the way they report medical debt on your credit...
The massive three credit score bureaus are altering the way in which they report medical debt in your credit score report, Watchdog Dave Lieber experiences.(Callie Richmond)

New metropolis park opens

It’s been virtually 4 years since I told you about one man’s crusade to bring a new Dallas city park on a scratchy piece of land to the far northern tip of Dallas. Sadly, Bruce Hatter handed away earlier than his dream may very well be accomplished. Posthumously, he was given the parks division’s Volunteer of the Yr Award.

Nicely, his lobbying efforts have paid off: Moss Glen Park has its opening Saturday at 10 a.m. at 5230 Bentwood Path, Dallas, 75252.

Technique to go, Bruce.

Before he died, Bruce Hatter led the movement to create a new Dallas city park in far North...
Earlier than he died, Bruce Hatter led the motion to create a brand new Dallas metropolis park in far North Dallas. Moss Glen Park formally opens Saturday, June 11 at 10 a.m.(Courtesy photograph)

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