1039: Bot Cops

Adam Curry & John C. Dvorak

3h 2m
June 3rd, 2018
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Executive Producers: Sir David Fugazzotto, Steven Janosik, Sir Colin Sloman - Baronet Horatio of Arabia, Rory Buszka, Ryan McWhirter, Andrew Grasso

Associate Executive Producers: Andy Cantrell, Ron Link, Joey Ephron, Russell Girten, Anonymous, Dwight Chick, Jason Denny, Dave Boseman, Teagon Murray

Cover Artist: Illuminadia


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OTG Woes - iPhone doesn't change timezone when location services are turned off
No Coffee
Windows Update
Short and Martin Netflix comedy
Thumbs Down instead of Flipping the Bird
Don't tear my sign
The Big Unplugged
Clap for John on the long game
Needs deconstruction so you can appreciate the genius of JCD
Very impressive
Play clip from 1037
Newsletter Vegas elopement hoax
AFG producer
Keeper work Schedule
Holidays House Manager
Week came up for avail
Realized neither of us has just sat on a beach for a week in 20 years
I also needed to be with her 24/7 to figure out the perfect way to propose to her
Viceroy deal
Under construction
Great deals
Only people there
Professional hotel reviewers (maybe yelpers)
Drone douche
Photographers and addicted 'models'
Was able to observe the ~45 second phone check
More on that later
Great food & Service
Olive cabinet
Just sun and drinking/eating
After day in Sun catch up on the News of the day
Weird TV schedule
Morning Joe only one
Stephanie Ruhl
GPS tracking and and ads
Bill Mahr would call it Spic & Spam
NA Group toxic
Wanted to figure out why, but no. It's FaceBag!
Soshnets have a culture and are unchangeable. See Orkut. FB cannot change the vitriol
Deactivated account - to download everything before deletion
A-holes there for sure
Some just mean and hateful
Also clearly smart people
I like a challenge
I visualize Reddit as a greasy slime slug with little barbs that stick out
Carefully poked it, lifted up its tail and smelled it's butt
In reality it's a shitty comment board with some simulated 'democracy'
super mods
reddit gold
up and down votes
And a form of shadow banning that is confusing to a new user
Caught in the 'spam filter" but shows up as posts
So I gave up
Needed to 'verify'
Won't interact with non-donors
Then it hit me
Media changed, not us
Loved The President / Hate his guts
Just as NA is very healthy for many
For some it is having the exact opposite effect and is harmful to others
Back to the clip
ClogWog's transcript project
Great projects!
Like The freedom Controller
Dave Jones call-out
Finally figured out how we can take this awe inspiring podcast workflow production tool and make it useful for more than just me :-)
Thank you to YOU and Ramsey Caine
Women war on Women
Disney distraction from Han Solo flop Rosanne
33'd floor
Hey Adam,
I have an inside "DMV" source who told me the
North Korean delegation stayed on the 33rd floor of the UN Plaza. Said he had
to hold in the laughter when he found out but also thinks it might be a sign of
everything working out. LOL
Please keep my name and email address anonymous of you use
this information on the show.
Thanks for all the hard work and dedication.
CIA Undermines North Korea Summit By Leaking Report To Media Asset | Zero Hedge
Thu, 31 May 2018 03:50
Authored by Elizabeth Lea Vos via Disobedient Media,
Just as it was reported that the summit between the United States and North Korea was back on and that Kim Young Chol, the Vice Chairman of North Korea was on his way to New York to meet with officials in preparation for the June 12 summit, the CIA leaked an intelligence assessment concluding that ''North Korea does not intend to give up its nuclear weapons any time soon.'' The timing of this leak is striking, as it seems to be an effort to undermine negotiations between the two nations and comes just days after ranking members of the Democratic Party and Republican hardliners attacked President Donald Trump over his efforts to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
The identity of the reporter who helped break the story also raises serious questions about whether or not a faction within the CIA deliberately attempted to undermine diplomatic efforts to ease tensions on the Korean Peninsula. According to NBC News, the report was leaked to none other than NBC national security reporter Ken Dilanian, known as ''The CIA's Mop-Up Man.''
In 2014, The Intercept reported on Ken Dilanian's correspondence and relationship with the CIA while Dilanian was a reporter for the Los Angeles Times.
According to The Intercept, ''Email exchanges between CIA public affairs officers and Ken Dilanian, now an Associated Press intelligence reporter who previously covered the CIA for the Times, show that Dilanian enjoyed a close collaborative relationship with the agency, explicitly promising positive news coverage and sometimes sending the press office entire story drafts for review prior to publication. In at least one instance, the CIA's reaction appears to have led to significant changes in the story that was eventually published in the Times.''
According to the Huffington Post, while writing for the Los Angeles Times, Dilanian also reported a CIA claim as fact by stating that ''there was no collateral murder in a 2012 drone strike on Al Qaeda leader Abu Yahya al-Libi.'' Dilanian's article was directly disputed in an Amnesty International report.
In the aftermath of the revelations about Dilanian's ties to the CIA, he was disavowed by the Los Angeles Times. The disclosure of Dilanian's collaboration with the CIA also led his former employer, David Lauter of the Tribune Washington to believe Dilanian could have violated Tribune news policy. Lauter acknowledged that Tribune policy dictates that reporters ''not share copies of stories outside the newsroom.'' Lauter further stated that he was ''disappointed that the emails indicate that Ken may have violated that rule.''
Dilanian has not shied away from pushing articles written by former CIA officials who continue to perpetuate the ''Trump-Russia'' collusion narrative without any regard to facts, such as Steven Hall's Washington Post article titled: ''I was in the CIA. We wouldn't trust a country whose leader did what Trump did.''
Wikileaks has also pointed out Dilanian's agency connection and his pushing of the ''Trump-Russia'' collusion narrative, tweeting: ''CIA's 'mop up man' Ken Dilanian is the NBC 'reporter' used to channel claim about president Putin + US election.''
In the aftermath of recent revelations concerning the CIA's collaboration with foreign intelligence agencies to spy on Donald Trump's campaign during the 2016 US Presidential Election the fresh leaks continue to show a pattern of rebellion that has long run rampant in the US intelligence community. While the CIA's apparent violations of ethical considerations concerning surveillance of candidates running for public office was serious enough, their interference drags the reputation of the agency to a new (and in the case of Korean peace negotiations, more dangerous) low amid their conflict with the sitting President of the United States.
However, despite these attacks, preparations between the two countries have continued for the upcoming June 12 summit. President Trump announced earlier today via Twitter that: ''We have put a great team together for our talks with North Korea. Meetings are currently taking place concerning Summit, and more. Kim Young Chol, the Vice Chairman of North Korea, heading now to New York. Solid response to my letter, thank you!''
CIA report says North Korea won't denuclearize, but might open a burger joint
Thu, 31 May 2018 03:49
The report, like nearly all intelligence products on North Korea, offered analysis at low or medium confidence '-- language intelligence agencies use to signal that analysts lack hard information to buttress their conclusions.
One of the world's most reclusive countries, North Korea is a notoriously difficult intelligence target. Human sources and communications intercepts are hard to come by.
"This is essentially some very smart analysts offering their very best guesses," one intelligence official said.
During the 2016 campaign, Trump said he would like to meet with the North Korean leader in a low-key setting that entailed "eating a hamburger on a conference table."
The CIA report does not specify which fast-food brand could be invited to North Korea, but said Kim envisioned that the establishment could be used to provide food during the talks and would show that he was open to Western investment.
In advance of major diplomatic negotiations, it's not uncommon for intelligence agencies and the State Department to provide assessments about the opposing side's red lines. The idea is to prepare American participants for all possible eventualities, and to provide options to influence the adversary's behavior.
The North Portal area at North Korea's Punggye-Ri Nuclear Test Site Excavation on Oct. 19, 2016. DigitalGlobe / 38 North via Getty Images The new CIA report, according to three national security officials, assessed that Kim may also offer other limited American investment in North Korea, particularly in infrastructure.
The U.S. and South Korea would likely focus on food delivery '-- possibly through the United Nations '-- and other agricultural development, the report said. The South Koreans would likely take the lead in delivering this aid.
The U.S. also could offer economic incentives, including sanctions relief.
The report says North Korean officials have not demanded in preliminary talks that the U.S. remove all its troops from South Korea, and they are not expected to do so in any initial summit.
The report says that South Korean President Moon Jae-in felt believes he enjoys a strong rapport with Kim, and that South Korea is considering a formal declaration to end the war between the two countries.
The CIA and the White House declined to comment.
One former senior official who has been briefed on the U.S. approach to North Korea acknowledged that U.S. intelligence agencies do not believe Kim would ever get rid of all his nuclear weapons.
"I've always wondered: How does the administration square that circle?" the former official said.
The big question going into any negotiation, the official said, was how the White House would deal with North Korea's unwillingness to denuclearize while maintaining Trump's public line requiring such a move.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo shake hands at the Workers' Party of Korea headquarters in Pyongyang on May 8, 2018. KCNA via KNS / AFP - Getty Images Trump seemed to acknowledge that dilemma in remarks last week where he said North Korea may not have to immediately denuclearize and that its nuclear program could be phased out over a period of time.
The U.S. also has decided to drop any human rights demands as part of the talks, according to a current and a former official '-- a deeply significant move when dealing with a country that the U.S. believes holds between 80,000 and 120,000 prisoners in squalid camps. The former official said the U.S. approach to North Korea was broken down into phases, each of which would bring corresponding gestures of aid and sanctions relief.
First, the Trump administration wants North Korea to declare all details of its nuclear program, dispose of fissile material and close some sites.
The U.S. would then press for international inspections and a gradual elimination of nuclear weapons.
The American side would like to all but eliminate fissile material in North Korea.
An open question, said the former official, is how and whether to press Kim to account for and relinquish his chemical and biological weapons. After Trump criticized the Iran nuclear deal for failing to account for Iran's missile program, it would be hard for him to reach a nuclear deal with North Korea that ignores other weapons of mass destruction.
On May 28, the White House said in a statement that President Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe had spoken and "affirmed the shared imperative of achieving the complete and permanent dismantlement of North Korea's nuclear, chemical and biological weapons and ballistic missile programs."
Taking tubes- allow a 3 year old to interpret your ‘intent’? Yeah, no
OTG airport dirty tablets to order then eat your food
FACT CHECK: Are Democrats Responsible For DHS Separating Children From Their Parents? : NPR
Tue, 29 May 2018 20:37
Central American migrants traveling in the Migrant Via Crucis caravan walk to their legal counselling meeting in Tijuana, Baja California state, Mexico, in April. Guillermo Arias/AFP/Getty Images hide caption
toggle caption Guillermo Arias/AFP/Getty Images Central American migrants traveling in the Migrant Via Crucis caravan walk to their legal counselling meeting in Tijuana, Baja California state, Mexico, in April.
Guillermo Arias/AFP/Getty Images Over Memorial Day weekend, President Trump tweeted that people should "put pressure on the Democrats to end the horrible law that separates children from there parents once they cross the Border into the U.S."
Put pressure on the Democrats to end the horrible law that separates children from there parents once they cross the Border into the U.S. Catch and Release, Lottery and Chain must also go with it and we MUST continue building the WALL! DEMOCRATS ARE PROTECTING MS-13 THUGS.
'-- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 26, 2018The president implied that children were being separated from their parents at the border because of a law enacted by Democrats.
Actually, the policy in question was enacted by his own administration.
On May 7, Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a speech that "If you're smuggling a child, then we're going to prosecute you, and that child will be separated from you, probably, as required by law. If you don't want your child separated, then don't bring them across the border illegally. It's not our fault that somebody does that."
Sessions announced the policy in Scottsdale, Ariz.
Under U.S. law, entering the country illegally is a crime. The Trump administration has decreed that such attempts will be prosecuted, meaning the adults are detained, and any children who accompany them are separated.
White House chief of staff John Kelly told NPR's John Burnett earlier this month that "the children will be taken care of '-- put into foster care or whatever. But the big point is they elected to come illegally into the United States and this is a technique that no one hopes will be used extensively or for very long. "
In an interview with NPR's Morning Edition host Steve Inskeep Tuesday, former President Barack Obama's domestic policy director, Cecilia Mu±oz, stated unequivocally this was not a policy the Obama administration followed.
"The Obama administration did not do that, no. We did not separate children from their parents," Mu±oz said. "This is a new decision, a policy decision put in place by the attorney general," which Mu±oz said "puts us in league with the most brutal regimes in the world's history."
Still, the White House continues to blame Democrats for failing to act on immigration legislation. At a White House briefing Tuesday, senior policy adviser Stephen Miller attributed what he labeled "the current immigration and border crisis and all of the attendant concerns it raises" to the "exclusive product of loopholes in federal immigration laws that Democrats refuse to close."
However, Democrats are the minority party in both chambers of Congress. The Republican-led majority has yet to take up significant immigration legislation in the House this session, although Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., has committed to holding votes this summer.
The Senate conducted a weeklong debate on numerous immigration-related bills in February, but none received the 60 votes necessary for passage.
Dogs are People Too
Dogs Are People, Too - The New York Times
Wed, 30 May 2018 04:07
Photo Credit Jane Evelyn Atwood/Contact Press Images FOR the past two years, my colleagues and I have been training dogs to go in an M.R.I. scanner '-- completely awake and unrestrained. Our goal has been to determine how dogs' brains work and, even more important, what they think of us humans.
Now, after training and scanning a dozen dogs, my one inescapable conclusion is this: dogs are people, too.
Because dogs can't speak, scientists have relied on behavioral observations to infer what dogs are thinking. It is a tricky business. You can't ask a dog why he does something. And you certainly can't ask him how he feels. The prospect of ferreting out animal emotions scares many scientists. After all, animal research is big business. It has been easy to sidestep the difficult questions about animal sentience and emotions because they have been unanswerable.
Until now.
By looking directly at their brains and bypassing the constraints of behaviorism, M.R.I.'s can tell us about dogs' internal states. M.R.I.'s are conducted in loud, confined spaces. People don't like them, and you have to hold absolutely still during the procedure. Conventional veterinary practice says you have to anesthetize animals so they don't move during a scan. But you can't study brain function in an anesthetized animal. At least not anything interesting like perception or emotion.
From the beginning, we treated the dogs as persons. We had a consent form, which was modeled after a child's consent form but signed by the dog's owner. We emphasized that participation was voluntary, and that the dog had the right to quit the study. We used only positive training methods. No sedation. No restraints. If the dogs didn't want to be in the M.R.I. scanner, they could leave. Same as any human volunteer.
My dog Callie was the first. Rescued from a shelter, Callie was a skinny black terrier mix, what is called a feist in the southern Appalachians, from where she came. True to her roots, she preferred hunting squirrels and rabbits in the backyard to curling up in my lap. She had a natural inquisitiveness, which probably landed her in the shelter in the first place, but also made training a breeze.
With the help of my friend Mark Spivak, a dog trainer, we started teaching Callie to go into an M.R.I. simulator that I built in my living room. She learned to walk up steps into a tube, place her head in a custom-fitted chin rest, and hold rock-still for periods of up to 30 seconds. Oh, and she had to learn to wear earmuffs to protect her sensitive hearing from the 95 decibels of noise the scanner makes.
After months of training and some trial-and-error at the real M.R.I. scanner, we were rewarded with the first maps of brain activity. For our first tests, we measured Callie's brain response to two hand signals in the scanner. In later experiments, not yet published, we determined which parts of her brain distinguished the scents of familiar and unfamiliar dogs and humans.
Soon, the local dog community learned of our quest to determine what dogs are thinking. Within a year, we had assembled a team of a dozen dogs who were all ''M.R.I.-certified.''
Although we are just beginning to answer basic questions about the canine brain, we cannot ignore the striking similarity between dogs and humans in both the structure and function of a key brain region: the caudate nucleus.
Rich in dopamine receptors, the caudate sits between the brainstem and the cortex. In humans, the caudate plays a key role in the anticipation of things we enjoy, like food, love and money. But can we flip this association around and infer what a person is thinking just by measuring caudate activity? Because of the overwhelming complexity of how different parts of the brain are connected to one another, it is not usually possible to pin a single cognitive function or emotion to a single brain region.
But the caudate may be an exception. Specific parts of the caudate stand out for their consistent activation to many things that humans enjoy. Caudate activation is so consistent that under the right circumstances, it can predict our preferences for food, music and even beauty.
In dogs, we found that activity in the caudate increased in response to hand signals indicating food. The caudate also activated to the smells of familiar humans. And in preliminary tests, it activated to the return of an owner who had momentarily stepped out of view. Do these findings prove that dogs love us? Not quite. But many of the same things that activate the human caudate, which are associated with positive emotions, also activate the dog caudate. Neuroscientists call this a functional homology, and it may be an indication of canine emotions.
The ability to experience positive emotions, like love and attachment, would mean that dogs have a level of sentience comparable to that of a human child. And this ability suggests a rethinking of how we treat dogs.
DOGS have long been considered property. Though the Animal Welfare Act of 1966 and state laws raised the bar for the treatment of animals, they solidified the view that animals are things '-- objects that can be disposed of as long as reasonable care is taken to minimize their suffering.
But now, by using the M.R.I. to push away the limitations of behaviorism, we can no longer hide from the evidence. Dogs, and probably many other animals (especially our closest primate relatives), seem to have emotions just like us. And this means we must reconsider their treatment as property.
One alternative is a sort of limited personhood for animals that show neurobiological evidence of positive emotions. Many rescue groups already use the label of ''guardian'' to describe human caregivers, binding the human to his ward with an implicit responsibility to care for her. Failure to act as a good guardian runs the risk of having the dog placed elsewhere. But there are no laws that cover animals as wards, so the patchwork of rescue groups that operate under a guardianship model have little legal foundation to protect the animals' interest.
If we went a step further and granted dogs rights of personhood, they would be afforded additional protection against exploitation. Puppy mills, laboratory dogs and dog racing would be banned for violating the basic right of self-determination of a person.
I suspect that society is many years away from considering dogs as persons. However, recent rulings by the Supreme Court have included neuroscientific findings that open the door to such a possibility. In two cases, the court ruled that juvenile offenders could not be sentenced to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole. As part of the rulings, the court cited brain-imaging evidence that the human brain was not mature in adolescence. Although this case has nothing to do with dog sentience, the justices opened the door for neuroscience in the courtroom.
Perhaps someday we may see a case arguing for a dog's rights based on brain-imaging findings.
Continue reading the main story
Who gets Princess Pot Roast? Canine custody battle decided by Nebraska Supreme Court | Courts | omaha.com
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 12:54
LINCOLN '-- A French bulldog by the name of Princess Pot Roast will never compete at the Westminster Kennel Club, but she got judged Friday by the Nebraska Supreme Court.
Peter Zelenka argued that the bulldog had been given to him by his boyfriend during their five-year relationship. The Supreme Court unanimously agreed, putting an end to a canine custody dispute that started after the Omaha couple's bitter breakup in 2015.
''I'm very happy with the decision,'' Zelenka said Friday. ''I think it was the right decision.''
The high court routinely rules on domestic property disputes, which is what the bulldog case amounted to. But Omaha attorney Jill Mason, who represented Zelenka, said she has noticed more pets at the center of litigation in recent years.
''We've had cases where dogs have been an issue in divorces,'' she said. ''But we have never had one in our practice that's gone before the Supreme Court.''
The court upheld the decision of Douglas County District Judge Kimberly Miller Pankonin, who presided last year over a two-day bench trial intended to resolve the fight. Zelenka's mother, along with the dog's breeder, testified that the pooch had been given to Zelenka as a birthday gift from Jason D. Pratte.
The men dubbed the pup Princess Pot Roast on her American Kennel Club registration, but they called her Pavlov.
After their relationship ran into tough times, Zelenka left the French princess with the Russian nickname at Pratte's house. He hoped a brief separation would help work things out, but when he returned a week later, the locks had been changed.
Zelenka said he hasn't seen the dog since.
Pratte appealed last year's lower court decision, arguing that he purchased Pavlov as a companion for his Labrador retriever and that the bulldog had always lived at his home. The Supreme Court dismissed the argument and pointed out that Zelenka also lived in the home throughout much of the relationship between the two men.
Both the trial court and the Supreme Court said the testimony of the breeder helped Zelenka.
''We conclude Zelenka met his burden of proving Pavlov was a gift from Pratte,'' said the opinion by Judge Stephanie Stacy. ''Pratte's assignment of error to the contrary is without merit.''
A message left with Pratte's lawyer Friday afternoon was not returned.
Zelenka said he hopes to be reunited with the dog early next week.
''She has so much personality in that little body,'' Zelenka said. ''French bulldogs are fantastic. They're amazing.''
Maggie, a golden retriever, helped fill the "empty nest" of owners Todd and Mary Johnson of Omaha. She's pictured cuddling with her best pal, Carl.
Maggie was named the Week 19 Pet of the Week!
Maggie, a golden retriever, helped fill the "empty nest" of owners Todd and Mary Johnson of Omaha. She's pictured cuddling with her best pal, Carl.
Maggie was named the Week 19 Pet of the Week!
Tommy Robinson
Magistrate Producer
Thank you so much for all your hard work and the terrific
product you create. It is outstanding.
I wanted to provide some further information on Tommy
I am a sitting Magistrate in the North of England. The
offence Tommy is charge with is dealt with by the Magistrate's Court in England
and Wales.
- You were correct that he held in contempt of court (under
the Criminal Justice Act
1925) for trying to film accused rapists within the court's precincts.
It may have also been that he was trying to film a minor (under 18) who details
of the court had ordered should not be disclosed.
- Members of the public or press are allowed within the
court itself or the court precincts to see what is going on and report on
proceedings, but they are not allowed to take photos or videos. This is except
for the Supreme Court which is live streamed.
-For being found guilty of contempt of court he was given a
prison sentence but it was suspended. (Not sure if this happens in the USA). It
means that if they commit another offence which is deemed serious enough then
the 'suspended sentence' kicks in with any additional sentence that is given
for the new offence.
- Under the Justices of the Peace Act 1361, Magistrates can
'bind over' any member of the public who is in danger of 'breaching the peace'.
A breach of the peace must involve violence or an 'imminent threat of
violence'. It will be the latter that they arrested Mr Robinson on last week.
- Binding
over orders specify an activity that the person must refrain from doing and
sets an amount that the person will have to pay if they breach the peace again.
In effect it is a slap on the wrist to try and prevent them being naughty
- From my
perspective, it looks to me like a great PR opportunity for Tommy to get his
profile up again, which was fading away a little. It should not trigger his
suspended sentence and the fine would not come in to force if he refrains from
the activity they specify for the time the order is active (usually a few
I have
attached the Adult Court bench book which covers this topic. Happy to assist you
or John if you got into trouble in the UK!
(Please don't
use my surname if mentioning on the show)
Puerto Rico Death Count
An Impromptu Memorial To Demand Puerto Rico's Hurricane Dead Be Counted : NPR
Fri, 01 Jun 2018 23:02
Luis Vzquez placed his shoes at the memorial in remembrance of his father, Luis Manuel Vzquez, who was found dead at his home two weeks after Hurricane Maria. Adrian Florido/NPR hide caption
toggle caption Adrian Florido/NPR Luis Vzquez placed his shoes at the memorial in remembrance of his father, Luis Manuel Vzquez, who was found dead at his home two weeks after Hurricane Maria.
Adrian Florido/NPR Luis Vzquez walked up to the elegant marble plaza in front of Puerto Rico's capitol building, bent over, and took off his shoes. He placed them among more than 400 other pairs that over several hours on Friday began forming a growing memorial to the hundreds, possibly thousands of people believed to have died as a direct or indirect result of Hurricane Maria, but whom Puerto Rico's government has yet to count.
Vzquez said his father was one of them.
"We thought he wasn't communicating with us because he had no power in his cell phone because there was no electricity," Vzquez said. "So the first week we thought it was normal." The second week, Vzquez's sister made it to their father's house. His decomposing body was in the bathtub. They still don't know what killed Luis Manuel Vzquez, and because they cremated him quickly, they likely never will.
"The government doesn't even know how to count the dead," this man's placard reads. Adrian Florido/NPR hide caption
toggle caption Adrian Florido/NPR "The government doesn't even know how to count the dead," this man's placard reads.
Adrian Florido/NPR "We already threw all of his shoes away," Vzquez said, standing barefoot on the hot marble. "So I put my own, and I'm going to leave them there."
The impromptu display '-- hundreds of sneakers and dress shoes and high heels and baby slippers '-- was at once a somber memorial to Puerto Rico's dead, and a quiet yet visually arresting protest against what many islanders see as their government's bungled accounting of the loss of life that the hurricane inflicted.
The display began small, but grew to hundreds of pairs of shoes as mourners and protesters arrived. Adrian Florido/NPR hide caption
toggle caption Adrian Florido/NPR The display began small, but grew to hundreds of pairs of shoes as mourners and protesters arrived.
Adrian Florido/NPR For many in Puerto Rico '' and especially for families of hurricane victims '-- the fact that the government's official tally of the dead remains at 64 more than eight months after the hurricane feels like an insult. They say it's a testament to how dismissive the government has been of their need to have the deaths of their loved ones acknowledged.
Those feelings were thrust to the surface again this week after Harvard University researchers released a study that estimated upwards of 4,000 possible hurricane-related deaths in the three months after the storm. The study, based on household surveys and therefore prone to a wide margin of error, preempted what is expected to be a more precise study that Puerto Rico's government commissioned, but that has been delayed.
"They have names." Adrian Florido/NPR hide caption
toggle caption Adrian Florido/NPR "They have names."
Adrian Florido/NPR A key number in the Harvard study '-- 4,645 possible dead '-- has quickly become a symbol: of the local and federal governments' failure to save lives, of the suspicion many have that Gov. Ricardo Rossell" has tried to suppress the true tally, of the victims that survivors say must not be forgotten or overlooked.
Ani Sanchez brought a pair of her old sneakers for the display. She said like many people, she's not under any illusion that 4,645 is a true count.
"I don't think that is an exact number," she said, "but at least the conversation started that the number is a lot greater than what the authorities reported. It's not 64."
"For the counted, the uncounted, the disappeared, the cremated, the invisible, the forgotten," Virgen Qui±ones wrote. Adrian Florido/NPR hide caption
toggle caption Adrian Florido/NPR "For the counted, the uncounted, the disappeared, the cremated, the invisible, the forgotten," Virgen Qui±ones wrote.
Adrian Florido/NPR Sanchez spoke through tears.
"Perhaps the first way they counted was wrong, but these people have to be counted and they have to be acknowledged," Sanchez said. "Because if you were here and you saw your neighbors die because they couldn't go down the stairs, and old people left behind, we have to let them know that they were not forgotten."
Others believe the real number is much higher than any of the latest estimates, but doubt they'll ever know the truth.
"The governor said he was going to have a transparent government, a government in black and white," said Migdalia Due±o. "What he has is a gray government."
Luis Manuel Vzquez's daughter held a sign that read, "4,645 dead and my daddy was one of them." Adrian Florido/NPR hide caption
toggle caption Adrian Florido/NPR Luis Manuel Vzquez's daughter held a sign that read, "4,645 dead and my daddy was one of them."
Adrian Florido/NPR Indeed, recent comments from Gov. Rossell" himself have raised questions about his administration's transparency over the death count. Speaking to CNN on Thursday, Rossell" said "there will be hell to pay" if he found out that officials in his government had withheld data that researchers and journalists have been seeking as they try to arrive at a more conclusive count of the dead.
But the government's refusal to release mortality data has been extensively covered in the local press for months. And just last week, Rossell" administration lawyers appeared in a San Juan court room to respond to a lawsuit filed by Puerto Rico's Center for Investigative Journalism, which has been seeking mortality data. The government's lawyers said they would release some information eventually, but pleaded with the judge not to force them to release it just yet.
War on Cash
Visa says service returning to normal - BBC News
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 14:49
Image caption A Sainsbury's store in Vauxhall, London, is not taking card payments Visa says its service is "close to normal" again following a system failure which left customers across Europe unable to make some purchases.
The company apologised and said it had no reason to believe the hardware failure was down to "any unauthorised access or malicious event".
Its statement came five hours after it had initially acknowledged the problem.
Shoppers had reported being stuck in queues as Visa transactions were unable to be processed.
Payment processing through Visa's systems accounts for £1 in £3 of all UK spending, the company said.
Jay Curtis, from Swansea, had two cards declined in B&Q when he tried to pay for £240 worth of goods.
"My card just wouldn't go through," the 32-year-old told the BBC.
"I didn't have cash on me so I had to drive all the way home."
Labour MP Angela Rayner seems to be among those affected, tweeting that she had to leave her local petrol station without paying.
Elle Gibbs-Murray, from Bridgend, said she was stuck in traffic on the Severn Bridge for 45 minutes as drivers were unable to pay the toll by card.
Image caption Adam is one of many unable to use their Visa payment card Adam, from Manchester, is a on a canal boat holiday with his girlfriend, Rach, and he was unable to use his card.
The 26-year-old said: "We have spent all day boating to moor up at a riverside pub in Kidlington for a birthday meal only to find the visa payments are not working. Having only £20 between us we have had to opt for a birthday drink instead.
"[There is] no cash point for miles around and no car as we are on the canal boat."
In Berlin's Alexanderplatz, customers at Primark complained of having to queue for 20 minutes to pay and staff there could not explain the reasons why transactions were failing.
Image copyright Deborah Elder Image caption Deborah says she was embarrassed she couldn't pay for her meal Deborah Elder, from Glasgow, was unable to pay her restaurant bill while she was waiting at Frankfurt airport to fly back to Toulouse.
She said: "I was so embarrassed. I gave the waiter the 14 euros I had left.
"I'm worried I won't be able to get home when I land in Toulouse as I have no cash for a taxi."
Supermarket Tesco said chip and pin payments were not affected, but contactless payments were.
Sainsbury's also said it had experienced problems.
Consumer advocacy group Which? advised people to keep evidence of extra expenses incurred in order to claim them back in the future.
"Visa and the banks need to ensure no-one is left out of pocket due to this outage," said Alex Neill, Which? managing director of home products and services.
A Visa spokesman said the system failure had "impacted customers across Europe" and the company apologised for falling "well short" of its reliability goal.
Vegas Massacre
Laura Loomer | Illuminate Media | Lombardo Lied: New Vegas Shooting Documents Reveal Three Women Found In Stephen Paddock's Room
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 14:20
'Very Damning for the FBI:' New Vegas Docs Reveal Stephen Paddock Warned of 'Terrorist Attack' at Mandalay Bay - DANGEROUS
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 15:05
A witness statement included in a batch of newly released police documents reveals that in the days before October's mass shooting in Las Vegas, Stephen Paddock warned of his attack.
An Uber driver said she picked up Paddock and a woman and that Paddock ''commented on the Mandalay Bay Area for a terrorist attack'' as he was being dropped off at the Mandalay Bay.
The witness statement is one of many previously unreported details that were released last week after a judge ordered them to be made public.
''I got a request to pick up Paddock at Terminal #1 pick-up area for Uber, not sure what day or time. I picked up a man and a woman with a big blue suitcase, old looking, and heavy, and he commented on the Mandalay Bay area for a terrorist attack and [was] dropped at the Mandalay Bay,'' the Uber driver stated in her report filed with the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department. ''Maybe check Uber records.''
The name of the Uber driver is redacted on the report, but the driver is described as a 5'10 200-pound woman with red hair and blue eyes. The witness statement was documented on Oct. 4, 2017 by an LVMPD officer.
This detail, that Paddock had warned of the attack days prior, has mysteriously been kept secret from the public until now.
The witness originally wrote ''they'' in her statement, but then crossed out the word ''they'' and changed it to ''he.'' It remains clear in the statement that another woman was also in the car with Paddock and the Uber driver. It is unclear whether that woman was Paddock's girlfriend Marilou Danley. DANGEROUS exclusively reported that other recently released documents revealed three women were in Paddock's room when police entered his 32nd floor suite the night of the shooting.
On that night, police say Paddock, 64, opened fire from his 32nd floor suite at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino onto a crowd gathered at a country music festival, killing 58 people and injuring over 800 more. LVMPD and the FBI have still not provided a motive for the shooting, remaining adamant that Paddock was a lone wolf and that the Las Vegas shooting was not an act of terrorism.
Immediately following the attack, ISIS claimed responsibility, saying that Paddock was an ISIS soldier who converted to Islam six months prior. Without completing an investigation, one day after the shooting Aaron Rouse, the Special Agent in charge of the FBI in Las Vegas, said in a press conference, ''We have determined, to this point, no connection to an international terrorist group.''
Adding more concern to the competence and honesty of Las Vegas shooting investigators, the witness statement was documented on Oct. 4. Dr. Larry Barton, an FBI academy threat management instructor, told NBC News during an interview on Oct. 2:
''I just got this ten minutes ago, and you'll be the first people to know this. The good people of Uber just called me to tell me that they picked up this perpetrator and his girlfriend on September 9th, and September 20th, and guess where they took them? To the Mandalay Bay. This fell out of fortune, so I suggested to Uber, you need to call the FBI and give them that information.''
After Barton's interview, word of Paddock being picked up in an Uber and dropped off at Mandalay Bay was quickly brushed aside and has not been mentioned by investigators or the media since.
Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo and Special Agent Rouse never mentioned the possible terror admission to the public during press conferences in the days and weeks following the massacre, but they told the public one day after the shooting, and two days before the witness statement was obtained, that the Las Vegas shooting was not an act of terrorism.
A source within the Las Vegas FBI told DANGEROUS that if the FBI was serious about the woman's statement, standard protocol would have required them to polygraph the Uber driver.
The source added, ''For a major investigation with a witness having specific information, it is standard operating procedure to ask her to take a polygraph. Never in my over 20 years in law enforcement have I seen investigators rule out terrorism within the first 24 hours of a major attack taking place. If true, this witness statement is very damning for the FBI.''
The FBI declined to comment. This week, Sheriff Lombardo issued a ''comment ban'' within the LVMPD to ensure that no LVMPD employees speak to anybody, particularly the media, about the contents of the newly released police documents. Lombardo is running for re-election as Sheriff in Clark County. The primary is on June 12.
Laura Loomer is a conservative investigative journalist and activist. She is the author of What Happens In Vegas, forthcoming from Dangerous Books. Follow her on Twitter @LauraLoomer
Amazon Has a Plan to Become Profitable. It's Advertising | Digital - AdAge
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 15:02
Credit: Luke MacGregor/BloombergFor more than two decades, Jeff Bezos has famously sacrificed profit for growth, persuading Wall Street that Amazon was best served pouring money into the logistical nuts and bolts that have turned his company into the Walmart of the web. More recently, investors have found solace in the company's profitable cloud services business, which has helped offset losses in e-commerce. Still, for the past five years Amazon's average profit margins have languished at about 1 percent.
Now along comes a business that could generate consistent and healthy returns: It's called advertising. Over the past several years, Bezos & Co. have quietly put together the pieces for a marketing platform that lets Amazon make money from the sheer size of its audience.
Having bet on Amazon cloud services and pushed the shares past $1,300, investors are now salivating about the ad business, which doesn't require big investments in new data centers or shipping hubs and generates fat margins. On Monday, BMO Capital Markets upped its Amazon price target to $1,600 a share, based largely on the growth of the ad business. Some analysts are predicting Amazon will reach $2,000, making it the first company with a $1 trillion market value.
"Advertising is the most profitable business in the world," says Jay Kahn, a partner at Light Street Capital, who notes that Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. gets more than half its revenue from ads. "For Amazon, advertising is going to be more profitable than its cloud business."
On Thursday Amazon once again reminded the world of its growing dominance, revealing a shortlist of North American cities vying to host the company's second headquarters.
For years, Amazon kept advertising on the site subtle for fear of alienating shoppers who had become used to choosing what to buy based largely on customer reviews and price. Amazon has been slowly giving more prominent placement to sponsored products in search results, forcing brands to buy ads to win top billing. It's easy to see why. By 2021, advertising on websites and mobile devices will account for half of all ad spending in the U.S., capturing greater share than television, radio, newspapers and billboards combined, according to eMarketer.
So far, that shift that has mostly benefited Google and Facebook. By contrast, Amazon has a tiny advertising business that last year generated $1.7 billion in revenue, according to EMarketer, compared with Google's $35 billion and Facebook's $17.4 billion. But it's growing quickly because companies like Procter & Gamble and Mondelez see Amazon as the place to win the "digital shelf" in the same way they fought to win the physical shelf in supermarkets.
Amazon has an advertising platform no other company can match: a web store selling hundreds of millions of products combined with a streaming entertainment service and a trove of data about customer preferences. Amazon attracts 180 million U.S. visitors each month'--all or most with shopping on their mind. And as more people shop on smartphones, they're skipping search engines like Google for Amazon's mobile app.
What's your Amazon strategy?Advertisers are paying attention. Just as big brands pressed their ad agencies a few years ago to devise plans to get the best bang for the ad buck with Google and Facebook, they're now demanding an "Amazon strategy." In November, ad giant Omnicom Group set up a specialized operation just to direct ad dollars to e-commerce, particularly Amazon, which has forced consumer brands to re-evaluate marketing decisions. "It's wreaking havoc on traditional retail models," says George Manas, president of Omnicom's Resolution Performance Marketing.
In negotiations with advertisers, Amazon bills itself as a better advertising investment than Google's search engine and Facebook's social media platform since people on Amazon are looking to buy, according to three people familiar with the negotiations. Amazon declined to comment.
"Similar to the candy and magazine racks, which are the most valuable space in the store, Amazon is the most valuable space on the web because you are at the very bottom of the funnel," says Scott Galloway, a marketing professor at New York University's Stern School of Business and author of The Four: The Hidden DNA of Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google. "Not only are people about to make a purchase, but you know what's in their basket. It's hard to imagine a more target-rich medium than Amazon or robust offering."
Amazon advertisements also offer real-time insights into how a marketing campaign is performing, a process that typically takes weeks when using traditional methods like TV commercials or coupons. "You can put a sale on Amazon and see relatively quickly if there's an uptick," says Neil Ackerman, a former Amazon and Mondelez executive who leads innovation for Johnson & Johnson's global supply chain. "Amazon realizes it can use this to grow ad revenue and it can charge more because it provides instant results."
Meanwhile, Amazon is pushing beyond the sponsored search results and display ads that are the bulk of its ad business. The company is more aggressively selling itself as a lifestyle media brand that influences purchasing decisions elsewhere, similar to magazine advertisements or billboards, the people said. It is increasing its investment in a data team tasked with measuring how advertisements on Amazon generate sales beyond Amazon, one of the people said, since that is more difficult to measure than advertisements on Amazon that directly result in sales.
Future advertising products could include buying products within Amazon Video programs, using the "X-ray" feature that currently lets viewers learn more about a particular actor during a show, according to two people familiar with the matter. And while Amazon maintains it won't sell advertising on its voice-activated Alexa platform, advertisers are inquiring given the buzz around its Echo digital assistants, two people said.
Big packaged goods companies are signing on. Executives see Amazon as the future way to reach shoppers and are shifting spending from traditional advertising channels to cement their place with Amazon. Even though Amazon has small grocery market share, brands think the next few years are critical because once shoppers establish regular shopping lists online, it will be hard to woo them back. Big grocery brands and manufacturers spend $225 million on advertising and in-store promotions each year, with more money shifting to digital advertisements, according to Cadent Consulting Group. Big Food has been mired in a sales slump for years amid changes in how consumers shop and eat; having an Amazon strategy helps them signal to Wall Street they're keeping pace with the changes.
"Grocery manufacturers and brands are shifting money because they don't want to lose on Amazon," says Guru Hariharan, a former Amazon executive and CEO of Boomerang Commerce, which makes software that help brands sell online. "You cannot lose the Amazon battle and hope to survive over the next 10 years."
Ultimately Amazon could upend the entire advertising industry, although some analysts believe Google will withstand the threat, as it did when Facebook pushed into the market. The ad money going to Amazon isn't necessarily being redirected from Google. Instead it is dollars once allotted for TV or offline retail promotions, according to Resolution Performance Marketing's Manas, who says: "I'm seeing it come from all sorts of nooks and crannies."
-- Bloomberg News
Mary Meeker's 2018 internet trends report: All the slides, plus analysis - Recode
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 15:02
Here's a first look at the most highly anticipated slide deck in Silicon Valley.It's that time of year again, when Mary Meeker unloads her highly anticipated internet trends report for the Code Conference crowd in Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif. This year, the Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers partner released 294 slides in rapid succession, covering everything from smartphone behavior in the U.S. to tech company competition in China.
Update: You can also read a transcript of Meeker's remarks here.
Here are some takeaways:
2017 was the first year in which smartphone unit shipments didn't grow at all. As more of the world become smartphone owners, growth has been harder and harder to come by. The same goes for internet user growth, which rose 7 percent in 2017, down from 12 percent the year before. With more than half the world online, there are fewer people left to connect.People, however, are still increasing the amount of time they spend online. U.S. adults spent 5.9 hours per day on digital media in 2017, up from 5.6 hours the year before. Some 3.3 of those hours were spent on mobile, which is responsible for overall growth in digital media consumption.Despite the high-profile releases of $1,000 iPhones and Samsung Galaxy Notes, the global average selling price of smartphones is continuing to decline. Lower costs help drive smartphone adoption in less-developed markets.Mobile payments are becoming easier to complete. China continues to lead the rest of the world in mobile payment adoption, with over 500 million active mobile payment users in 2017.Voice-controlled products like Amazon Echo are taking off. The Echo's installed base in the U.S. grew from 20 million in the third quarter of 2017 to more than 30 million in the fourth quarter. Tech companies are facing a ''privacy paradox.'' They're caught between using data to provide better consumer experiences and violating consumer privacy.Tech companies are becoming a larger part of U.S. business. In April, they accounted for 25 percent of U.S. market capitalization. They are also responsible for a growing share of corporate R&D and capital spending.E-commerce sales growth is continuing to accelerate. It grew 16 percent in the U.S. in 2017, up from 14 percent in 2016. Amazon is taking a bigger share of those sales at 28 percent last year. Conversely, physical retail sales are continuing to decline.Big tech is competing on more fronts. Google is expanding from an ads platform to a commerce platform via Google Home Ordering. Meanwhile, e-commerce giant Amazon is moving into advertising.People are spending more on health care, meaning they might have to be more focused on value. Meeker asks: ''Will market forces finally come to health care and drive prices lower for consumers?'' Expect health care companies to offer more modern retail experiences, with convenient offices, digitized transactions and on-demand pharmacy services.The speed of technological disruption is accelerating. It took about 80 years for Americans to adopt the dishwasher. The consumer internet became commonplace in less than a decade. Expect technology to also disrupt the way we work. Just as Americans moved from agriculture to services in the 1900s, employment types will again be in flux. This time, expect more on-demand and internet-related jobs to predominate.Internet leaders like Google and Amazon will offer more artificial intelligence service platforms as AI becomes a bigger part of enterprise spending. China is catching up as a hub to the world's biggest internet companies. Currently, China is home to nine of the world's 20 biggest internet companies by market cap while the U.S. has 11. Five years ago, China had two and the U.S. had nine. Immigration remains important for U.S. tech companies. More than half of the most highly valued tech companies in the U.S. are founded by first- or second-generation immigrants. Uber, Tesla, WeWork and Wish all have first-generation founders. Here are all the slides:
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In this Storystream Code Conference, Day 2 Watch 200 Intel drones light up the 2018 Code Conference sky Mary Meeker's 2018 internet trends report: All the slides, plus analysis View all 30 stories
FBI Takes Control of APT28's VPNFilter Botnet
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 15:01
The US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has obtained court orders and has taken control of the command and control servers of a massive botnet of over 500,000 devices, known as the VPNFilter botnet.
The existence of this massive threat came to light yesterday when Cisco Talos published a report about VPNFilter infecting over 500,000 routers and NAS devices across the world.
FBI: APT28 is behind VPNFilterCisco said the botnet appeared to be preparing for an attack on Ukraine, as the botnet's operators were working hard to infect as many devices as possible within the country.
The Ukrainian Secret Service believed the attack was supposed to take place on Saturday when the Ukrainian capital of Kiev is hosting the UEFA Champions League soccer final.
The FBI confirmed that the botnet has been created and was under the control of a famous Russian cyber-espionage unit known under different names, such as APT28, Sednit, Fancy Bear, Pawn Storm, Sofacy, Grizzly Steppe, STRONTIUM, Tsar Team, and others.
A report authored by the Estonian Foreign Intelligence Service claims APT28 is a unit of the Russian Military's Main Intelligence Directorate (abbreviated GRU).
This group has been behind several cyber-attacks aimed at Ukraine in the past, such as the NotPetya ransomware outbreak, and the BlackEnergy attacks on Ukraine's power grid in 2015 and 2016.
FBI seizes control of VPNFilter's C&C domainSecurity experts deemed the VPFilter botnet incredibly dangerous, not only because it was the work of a nation-state cyber group with nefarious reasons, but because it also included functions to intercept network traffic, search for SCADA equipment, and wipe firmware to temporarily brick devices.
With such powerful capabilities, and with devices infected all over the world, US authorities stepped in to prevent further damage from this threat.
Hours after the publication of the Cisco report, the FBI had obtained a court order based on a submitted affidavit to take control over the domain toknowall.com, the URL where VPNFilter bots would connect to get their commands and additional modules.
FBI asks users to reset devices to get a list of victimsWith the domain firmly in its grasp, the FBI is now asking users across the world who own affected routers and NAS devices to reset their equipment.
The reasoning, according to the FBI, is to make these devices reconnect to the command and control server, giving the FBI a full insight into the botnet's real size.
The FBI plans to use this knowledge to create a list of vulnerable devices and notify ISPs, private and public sector partners that can deal with the infected devices.
Owners of the following types of devices are vulnerable to the VPNFilter malware, and should reboot their devices, based on the FBI's advice:
Linksys E1200Linksys E2500Linksys WRVS4400NMikrotik RouterOS for Cloud Core Routers: Versions 1016, 1036, and 1072Netgear DGN2200Netgear R6400Netgear R7000Netgear R8000Netgear WNR1000Netgear WNR2000QNAP TS251QNAP TS439 ProOther QNAP NAS devices running QTS softwareTP-Link R600VPN
UT researchers unveil findings in East Austin gentrification study
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 15:00
Dogs now outnumber children nearly 2-to-1 in East Austin. An abundance of dogs in the neighborhood doesn't directly point to gentrification, but a steady decrease in children does.
Researchers from the Institute for Urban Policy Research and Analysis at the University of Texas presented their latest findings on the effects of gentrification Wednesday morning. The new report was prompted by a perception and question from residents surveyed in an initial study released in March: ''Are there more dogs than children in East Austin?''
From 2000 to 2016, the number of children in the neighborhood between East Seventh and East 11th streets declined 14 percent, the new report concluded. Of the 171 single-family homes surveyed, researchers also counted 116 dogs and 66 children.
RELATED: In gentrifying East Austin, are dogs replacing children?
Among the findings:
' 46 percent of surveyed households have one or more dogs.
' 76 percent of surveyed households do not have children in them.
' From 2000 to 2016, the median family income in the neighborhood has risen from $28,929 to $69,570.
Dog ownership in East Austin is on par with the national average, said Eric Tang, a UT professor and researcher. Although the number of children has decreased, dogs are not replacing them '-- they are just more visible.
''It's not as if the people living in this neighborhood are excessive dog lovers,'' He said. ''What's really happening is there are so few children in the neighborhood that it makes it seem as if there is an abundance of dogs.''
For longtime East Austin residents, ''neighborhood'' now means something different, said Olivia Sullings, 22, a student researcher on the project. ''There's an overall disappointment. '... Definitely a loss in the feeling of community, feeling connected '-- feeling like you know your neighbors.''
Donna Hoffman, 56, has lived on and off in the neighborhood since 1991. She said it's unsettling to see displacement.
''It's a heartbreak sometimes because I have neighbors who have had to move and have been pushed out,'' she said. ''I can understand why their families would need that money from the sale of the houses, but primarily there's a lot of people who are there now, who have stayed and who would like to stay.''
For some residents, it is an economic burden to stay, but they are doing what they can to hold on to their homes.
''It's not that it's too expensive to leave, it's just that this is their home,'' Tang said. ''They feel like they have a right to stay in their historic communities, and they will do whatever they can to stay in their communities despite rising property taxes.''
To repopulate the neighborhood with children again, affordability is key, he said: ''If you don't have affordable housing, you will not see this neighborhood repopulated with children.''
This May Be The Biggest Economic And Social Shift Of The Last 100 Years. Are You Ready? | Inc.com
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 15:00
The constant chatter about driverless, autonomous, and electric vehicles is nearly deafening. Yet, in all of that noise what's most often missed is that the implications these trends will have go well beyond the obvious changes in the way we power and drive automobiles.
Not only is the 150-year reign of the Internal Combustion Engine Vehicle fast approaching its end, but with it the near sacred model of automobile ownership, along with the very role of the automobile as a staple of modern society.
Trying to depict how radical this change will be is near heresy since it threatens one of the largest and most established global industries along with an entire ecosystem of suppliers, dealers, real estate developers, lenders, and insurers.
So, just how dramatic? Research just published by the futures think tank I lead, Delphi Group (in collaboration with Ideafarms in India), projects that the number of automobiles on the road in 2050 will be less than 15 percent of what it is today. That's not a typo. In the USA that's a drop from 250 Million vehicles in 2018 to 33 million in 2050. The same approximate effect will be felt across the globe. However, the number of vehicle hours driven (by the cars, not by us) increase 400 percent. Why? In a word, utilization.
In 30 years the number of cars will decrease by 85 percent, but the number of hours driven will increase 400 percent.
Autonomous electric vehicles require 90 percent less maintenance, can achieve 80 percent + sustained utilization rates (i.e. 23 hours a day), do not need parking garages and parking spaces, can become platforms for entertainment, shopping, and socialization, and will reduce traffic accidents by 90 percent + (94 percent of all accidents today are attributed to human error).
Imagine fully autonomous vehicles, which will be available on-demand where and when needed. These vehicles will operate with down time only for maintenance and recharging. And, the sacred cow, individual ownership of vehicles, will become a novelty for collectors and for sport.
Does this sound like anathema or opportunity?
These forecasts will likely appear outlandish as they tread on some culturally and economically hallowed ground. Cars are far more than a mode of transportation. The automobile has become synonymous with personal identity in the developed world. For most people it is the first or second largest purchase and ongoing expense they will incur during their lives. Yet, unlike a home, the typical car is idle and has no utility for 90% of its useful life. Where is yours right now? When weighted based on total cost of ownership over actual hours used it becomes the single largest life expense for 99.9% of the world's population.
It's Nobody's CarWant to go really out on the edge?
What if autonomous cars were non-human legal entities in which many people had a stake, not unlike a public corporation, which has many owners?
While the notion of cars that own themselves may seem far-fetched, there is no practical reason why this cannot be done. The technologies needed to do this, such as blockchain, exist today. In fact, in developing parts of the world where individual ownership is economically inconceivable, or where the overhead needed to introduce an industrial era model of corporate ownership is economically unattractive, this may be the only viable model to bring the transportation needed to build a thriving economy for ten billion people.
The InevitableHere are just 10 of the inevitable changes that are coming over the next 30 years:
Insurance companies will need to adjust models for insuring human-driven vehicles, making car ownership a financial luxury for individual owners.The role of the automobile as a form of transportation from point A to point B will be transformed into a form of entertainment and socialization creating a new platform for the delivery of content and media. You will basically be living inside of your smartphone!Autos will function as platforms for socialization in which people connect and gather. Some will be mobile conference and meeting rooms, others mobile restaurants and clinics. Commute time will cease to exist and along with it untold hours of lost productivity. Could this be the Drive-In of the 21st Century?The AV will finally allow the decongestion of urban city centers, which are today littered with automobiles that occupy valuable land. For example, in the typical large city 50 percent of the land area is dedicated to roadways and parking. Urban and rural areas will see a resurgence of activity as commute time becomes a non-issue. If projected out to 2050 we may save over one trillion dollars in the US alone since the cost of motor-vehicle deaths, injuries, and property damage in 2016 was $432 billion in the US alone, according to the National Safety Council.Deaths due to vehicular accidents will be reduced globally by over 1,000,000 lives yearly.The evolution of EVs and AVs will vary significantly from geography to geography and country to country. While commercial autonomous vehicles will likely develop quickly in developed countries such as the USA, individual non-ownership-based AVs are likely to take longer. Non-intuitively, the inverse is true of developing countries, such as India and China, which will have a higher economic incentive and regulatory latitude to move to AVs.There will be widespread employment disruption within developed countries that rely heavily on both the manufacture of owner-driven vehicles. Dealerships will disappear entirely.Lending for auto loans will shift dramatically from human owners to vehicles that own themselves.And lastly, let's not forget the impact of vehicles on the planet. According to a study by NASA, vehicles are the single largest contributor to climate change.There's ample disruption and fear to be doled out by the specter of these changes and the retooling they will demand of the workforce and the economy. Perhaps, as disruptive will be the myriad unintended consequences that we can only begin to predict. For example, 13.6 percent of all organ donations today come from vehicle accidents. How do we make up for that deficit when we already have over 100,000 people waiting for organ transplants?
Yet, there is also immense opportunity to create a safer, more ecologically sustainable, and human-centered model for the transportation of ten billion people.
Unimaginable? Big change often is. It's also inevitable.
Former White House staff emails reveal private thoughts amid one of the nation's most horrific school tragedies - The Baltimore Post
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 14:57
Former White House staff emails reveal private thoughts amid one of the nation's most horrific school tragedies
Add to Favorites '--'' Written by: Ann Costantino '--''
Former Obama Administration chief of staff / current Mayor of Chicago, Rahm Emanuel and former U.S. Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan When tragedy struck a Newtown, Connecticut community five and a half years ago, an unimaginable nightmare unfolded while the country looked on in horror.
Heavily armed, 20-year-old Adam Lanza shot his way through a plate glass window adjacent to the entrance of Sandy Hook Elementary School, stoically proceeded down a hallway, and systematically took the lives '' one by one '' of 20 first graders and six school personnel with a Bushmaster Model XM15-E2S rifle.
But even before victims were laid to rest after their fatal shootings, former U.S Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan and Chicago's Mayor Rahm Emanuel exchanged messages on how to frame the tragedy, politically.
During a roughly 10 minute period, the native Chicagoans exchanged seven messages two days following the massacre, in which Mayor Emanuel, who had previously served as President Barrack Obama's chief of staff, advised Secretary Duncan on what position he should take on the Sandy Hook shootings.
At 6:57PM EST on December 16, 2012, Duncan wrote to Emanuel in a message titled ''CT shootings.''
Duncan asked the Chicago mayor, ''What are your thoughts?''
Five minutes later, Emanuel responded, ''Go for a vote this week before it fades. Tap peoples emotion. Make it simple assault weapons.''
Duncan responded immediately, ''Yup- thanks.''
''When I did brady bill and assault weapons for clinton we always made it simple. Criminals or war weapons,'' Emanuel said in the email to Duncan.
''Gun show loophole?'' Duncan responded. ''Database? Cop-killer bullets? Too complicated?'' he said.
''Cop killer maybe,'' Emanuel responded. ''The other no.''
The exchange ended when Duncan concluded with, ''Got it.''
Two days after the Sandy Hook massacre, the former education secretary and the sitting mayor of Chicago were already discussing a national strategy.
The Brady Bill and Assault Weapons. In the early nineties, Mayor Emanuel worked under President Bill Clinton on the Brady Crime Bill.
Named after President Ronald Reagan's press secretary, James Brady, who had been shot by a man attempting to assassinate the Republican president, the Brady Bill forced a five-day hold on all firearms pending a background check and prevented certain individuals from ever obtaining a firearm.
Within a year of the passage of the Brady Crime Bill, President Clinton also signed into law a Federal Assault Weapons Ban. The bill had first passed in congress, while narrowly passing in the U.S. Senate.
The 10-year ban, which began in 1994, prohibited the manufacture of certain semi-automatic firearms which were classified as assault weapons. The ban also outlawed large capacity ammunition that were capable of holding more than the standard number of rounds.
But the ban expired in 2004, and attempts to have it reinstated as federal law have been unsuccessful.
ReThink Discipline. Who's to blame? Arne Duncan, who served as President Barrack Obama's Education Secretary from 2009 to 2015, began working on instituting new school discipline policies in 2011, ultimately disseminating federal guidance for schools in 2014.
The goal was to remove schools' zero-tolerance behavior policies and to reduce and eventually eliminate disproportionate suspension and expulsion gaps between white students and students of color.
Coined ''Rethink Discipline,'' the move was an effort to curb suspensions and expulsions as a means to eliminate what 2014 civil rights data show are disproportionate rates of out of school consequences between white students, students of color, as well as students with learning disabilities.
The data shows that black students make up 16% of the student population, yet make up 32-43% of suspensions, while their white counterparts make up 31-40% of the suspensions and expulsions, yet are 51% of the student population. The Civil Rights research also shows that depending on which national statistic is being referenced, black children, specifically, were suspended at least three to four times more than white students at the time the 2014 study was conducted.
The idea behind the discipline guidance was to end a cycle seen as racially unfair and to keep students '' all students '' in school as a way to help end segregation as well as prevent the loss of classroom instruction.
The federal data showed that when students are not in school '' especially disproportionately by race '' they are missing valuable instructional time unequally; and by losing valuable instructional time, students are less likely to graduate from high school or go on to pursue higher education.
The interruption in the educational process was seen to continue the cycle of school-to-prison-to-continued-poverty, especially for minority students.
But the way Duncan aimed to solve the disparity was through a federal initiative that measured the success of the program by a deliberate reduction in suspension and expulsion numbers, for numbers' sake.
In other words, as a means to end suspension and expulsion disparities, every year the suspensions and expulsion numbers would be required to demonstrate a downward trend which means school administrators would need to suspend and expel students fewer times with each subsequent year.
Additionally, school-based officers would be coached in avoiding the arrests of students and would receive awards for improvement in arrest numbers.
The result: chaos and violence erupting in schools across the country.
But despite criticism Duncan has received for the discipline policy changes he instituted while education secretary, he sees his primary failure at the White House, as he worked in the capacity of education secretary, as being unable to help successfully pass improved gun laws.
More school tragedies. Meanwhile, two mass shootings at schools have occurred over just the last three months alone. A third shooting involved a Southern Maryland school in which a 17 year-old boy wounded a 14 year-old boy, while killing a 16 year-old female student.
In February, 19-year-old Nickolas Cruz, a former student of Marjory Stoneman High School in Parkland, Florida, opened fire with an AR-15-style rifle he purchased one year before. Cruz killed 17 students and teachers in his rampage, while injuring 14 others.
One of those wounded students, 15 year-old Anthony Borges was shot five times by Cruz as Borges slammed the door shut, protecting 20 of his fellow classmates inside his classroom at Marjory Stoneman.
Roger Borges, Anthony's father, read the email exchange between Duncan and Emanuel regarding the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.
In response, Mr. Borges released a statement through his attorney to The Baltimore Post. ''It is clear by the email and comments in the press that he is prepared to sacrifice children's education to pass a gun bill. They care more about passing gun legislation than keeping the schools safe,'' he said.
Yet, the public is split on where to place the blame.
While some accuse Broward County schools for the attack by allowing Cruz to slip through the cracks under Duncan's ReThink Discipline policy, others place the blame squarely on insufficient gun laws.
On the one hand, critics of the school system say that Cruz was able to obtain the firearm because he was not helped nor disciplined sufficiently as a student which would have established a criminal record preventing the firearm purchase in first place.
On the other hand, some see that regardless of Cruz' long history of deviant behavior, the former student '' who returned to his former high school to massacre students and teachers '' was able to purchase the assault refile because there is no ban against them.
After the shooting, Duncan took to Twitter to share his thoughts on where he thought the focus should be.
''My plea: Please, no more 'thoughts and prayers' from politicians. Sorry, that is beyond insufficient. We need legislation- laws passed- that protect children, and all of us, from gun violence'...'' Duncan said.
But another school tragedy would strike again three months after Parkland's, in the form of yet another mass school shooting in Santa Fe, Texas.
Last week, while using a shotgun and a .38 caliber revolver, 17 year-old Demitrios Pagourtzis took the lives of eight students and two teachers, while injuring 13 others.
In response to that shooting, Duncan released a statement '' again on Twitter '' this time calling for kids and parents to boycott school, altogether.
Duncan said, ''This is brilliant,'' he affirmed in a retweet of a similar message. He said, ''and tragically necessary.''
''What if no children went to school until gun laws changed to keep them safe?'' Duncan continued.
But in opposition to the federal guidelines he created as education secretary to keep all kids in school, Duncan doubled-down in an interview on CNN yesterday morning, advocating for them to stay out.
''It is absolutely a radical idea. It is provocative,'' Duncan said.
''I know that it would be very difficult, counter to everything I have talked about all my life and trying to get kids to school and to stay in school.'' But, Duncan continued, ''I just think as a nation we are at a breaking point and we cannot continue to allow our children and our adults to die due to senseless gun violence'... I think it would shock the nation.''
''I think it would create the kind of tension we've lacked. And we need to create a tension to compel lawmakers to change.''
Duncan then mentioned November's election as a way to hold resistant lawmakers accountable for any lack of action.
Mobilizing a plan. After the Parkland shootings in February, nationwide school ''walk-outs'' and organized marches in protest of school shootings mobilized across the country.
American students, staff and parents protested current gun laws which they say allowed for such tragedies like that in Parkland to occur.
But some advocates see Duncan's message to boycott schools as being less about school safety, and more about politics and political expediency, leading up to the elections.
Because if Duncan, they say, were truly concerned about school safety, the federal guidance he instituted that has led to an increase in school violence wouldn't, itself, be harming America's schools.
One such advocacy group sees the irony.
The Baltimore-based non-profit group, ''Parent2Parent Network,'' which focuses school climate and safety and fields daily complaints related specifically to school violence as a direct result of Duncan's Rethink Discipline guidance, aims to empower school communities in order to restore school safety.
In response to reading the email exchange between Duncan and Emanuel, the group released a statement to The Baltimore Post. ''It appears that former Secretary Duncan was and is using the gun control platform to deflect from his failed educational policies which have negatively impacted nearly 51 million students and over 3 million teachers nationwide. Two days after this horrific shooting, the focus of their response was to manipulate people's emotions rather than supporting the families of the victims.''
The emails. The Duncan/Rahm emails, which elucidate the politics behind a tragedy as it was unfolding, were obtained by The Baltimore Post after a reporter '' who was researching another matter '' filed a Freedom of Information Act request last summer with the U.S. Department of Education.
When confronted with the emails about how to handle the Sandy Hook shootings, neither Mr. Duncan, Mayor Emanuel nor their office staff chose to respond.
Despite the silence on the matter, in one of Duncan's last Tweets, which quotes him from a recent interview in The Atlantic, the former education secretary coincidentally addresses the very tragedy discussed in the emails.
'''We played by all the rules after Sandy Hook. We did a study, we did a report, we worked with Congress, and guess what we accomplished? Nothing.' @arneduncan on a plan to boycott American schools.''
In the interview from which he is quoted, Duncan says that one of the most disappointing failures of his career has been deaths that have occurred under his watch due to gun violence.
He said he hopes a nationwide boycott of schools, accomplished through mobilizing students, will compel lawmakers to make a change.
Of the school boycott idea, Duncan said during the interview, ''Nothing we have done to date has worked. We have absolutely failed. I have failed. We've all failed. But I am also more hopeful today than I have been at any time since the Sandy Hook massacre.''
annc@t hebaltimorepost.com
Emails can be viewed here.
New Scientific Evidence Robustly Affirms Scandinavian Temperatures Were 3-4°C Warmer 9000 Years Ago
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 14:53
Because trees may only grow within narrowly-defined temperature ranges and elevations above sea level, perhaps the most reliable means of assessing the air temperatures of past climates is to collect ancient treeline evidence. In a new paper, Kullman (2018) found tree remnants at mountain sites 600 to 700 meters higher than where the modern treeline ends, strongly implying Early Holocene air temperatures in northern Sweden were 3-4°C warmer than recent decades.
Kullman, 2018 ''The present paper reports results from an extensive project aiming at improved understanding of postglacial subalpine/alpine vegetation, treeline, glacier and climate history in the Scandes of northern Sweden. The main methodology is analyses of mega fossil tree remnants, i.e. trunks, roots and cones, recently exposed at the fringe of receding glaciers and snow/ice patches. This approach has a spatial resolution and accuracy, which exceeds any other option for tree cover reconstruction in high-altitude mountain landscapes.'' ''All recovered tree specimens originate from exceptionally high elevations, about 600-700 m atop of modern treeline positions .''''Conservatively drawing on the latter figure and a summer temperature lapse rate of 0.6 °C per 100 m elevation (Laaksonen 1976), could a priori mean that, summer temperatures were at least 4.2 °C warmer than present around 9500 year before present . However, glacio-isostatic land uplift by at least 100 m since that time (M¶ller 1987; P¥sse & Anderson 2005) implies that this figure has to be reduced to 3.6 °C higher than present-day levels, i.e. first decades of the 21st century . Evidently, this was the warmth peak of the Holocene, hitherto.'' ''This inference concurs with paleoclimatic reconstructions from Europe and Greenland (Korhola et al. 2002; Bigler et al. 2003; Paus 2013; Luoto et al. 2014; V¤liranta et al. 2015).''New Paper: Greenland Ice Sheet 2-5°C Warmer With Much Lower Volume During The Early Holocene Nielsen et al., 2018 ''The Holocene climatic optimum was a period 8''5 kyr ago when annual mean surface temperatures in Greenland were 2''3°C warmer than present-day values. '... The initial mass loss in response to the temperature increase in the early Holocene is largest when forcing the ice sheet with the temperature and accumulation reconstructions from Gkinis and others (2014) (Experiment 5). In this simulation, temperature anomalies peak at more than 5°C above the present-day reference climate in the early Holocene and the ice sheet loses 20% of its volume in the 3000 years following the onset of the Holocene through increased surface melting.''
''The largest and most rapid retreat of the ice sheet was found for Experiment 5, which was forced by the temperature and accumulation reconstructions of Gkinis and others (2014). In this temperature reconstruction, temperature increases rapidly at the onset of the interglacial and has several shorter periods with temperatures more than 5°C above present in the early Holocene. .. Geological evidence suggests further that the ice-sheet margins in the southwest retreated up to '¼ 100 km behind their present-day position during the mid-Holocene (Funder and others, 2011). This evidence is further supported by interpretations of relative sea-level records and bedrock uplift rates that also point towards ice sheet retreat beyond the present ice volume in the mid-Holocene (Khan and others, 2008; Funder and others, 2011; Lecavalier and others, 2014).'''' We find that the ice sheet retreats to a minimum volume of '¼0.15''1.2 m sea-level equivalent smaller than present in the early or mid-Holocene when forcing an ice-sheet model with temperature reconstructions that contain a climatic optimum, and that the ice sheet has continued to recover from this minimum up to present day.''
Graph Source: Nielsen et al., 2018 and Briner et al., 2016
Michael Avenatti sought funds from Democratic 'super PAC' for Stormy Daniels case: Report
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 14:48
Lucy Nicholson | Reuters
Michael Avenatti, lawyer for adult-film actress Stephanie Clifford, also known as Stormy Daniels.
Michael Avenatti, the lawyer for adult film star Stormy Daniels, reportedly sought funding from leading Democratic groups in an effort to help his client's legal battle against President Donald Trump, according to The New York Times.
Avenatti contacted Bradley Beychok, the president of American Bridge, a super PAC founded by liberal political operative David Brock, while someone associated with Avenatti's law firm reached out two Democratic donors, two anonymous Democratic operatives told the Times. Avenatti reportedly suggested that he was seeking $2 million in donations, at least partly from Democratic benefactors.
American Bridge opted against donating to Avenatti's case, according to the operatives, because the PAC's leaders decided it was not a good use of their money.
In a statement to CNBC, Avenatti denied the Times' report.
"Never happened," Avenatti said in an email. "But what I can tell you is we have turned down over $200,000 from Republican donors looking to harm the president."
Avenatti declined to name the donors.
"They [Republican donors] offered the money in the last month, Avenatti added. "We turned it down because we will only accept money through the crowdjustice.com website in the interest of disclosure."
Avenatti and Daniels have been financing his efforts through the crowdfunding site. So far they have raised $527,000 from more than 15,000 donors, according to the Times.
A representative with American Bridge confirmed to CNBC that Avenatti spoke with Beychok, but declined further comment.
Avenatti has been in the limelight since he began representing Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford. Daniels is suing Trump, claiming that the non disclosure agreement that barred her from discussing her alleged intimate relationship with Trump that happened years before the 2016 presidential election is invalid because Trump did not sign it.
Daniels received a $130,000 hush payment in the days before the election. The source of the payment was Michael Cohen, Trump's lawyer who is under criminal investigation for possible bank fraud and campaign finance violations. Though the White House denied knowing of the payment, it was later revealed Trump reimbursed Cohen the $130,000.
Avenatti has been openly critical of Trump and tried to become involved in Cohen's criminal case before backing off Wednesday. However, Avenatti claims that Daniels' case is "not about politics."
"I can't tell you the name of every person that I have spoken to, or not spoken to, over the last three months," Avenatti told the Times, "but what I can tell you is that we have not taken any political-associated dollars from anyone on the right or anyone on the left. Period."
Read The New York Times' full report here.
Microsoft - GitHub acquisition talks resume
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 14:48
Getty Images
Microsoft held talks in the past few weeks to acquire software developer platform GitHub, Business Insider reports.
One person familiar with the discussions between the companies told CNBC that they had been considering a joint marketing partnership valued around $35 million, and that those discussions had progressed to a possible investment or outright acquisition. It is unclear whether talks are still ongoing, but this person said that GitHub's price for a full acquisition was more than Microsoft currently wanted to pay.
GitHub was last valued at $2 billion in its last funding round 2015, but the price tag for an acquisition could be $5 billion or more, based on a price that was floated last year.
GitHub's tools have become essential to software developers, who use it to store code, keep track of updates and discuss issues. The privately held company has more than 23 million individual users in more than 1.5 million organizations. It was on track to book more than $200 million in subscription revenue, including more than $110 million from companies using its enterprise product, GitHub told CNBC last fall.
Microsoft has reportedly flirted with buying GitHub in the past, including in 2016, although GitHub denied those reports. A partnership would give Microsoft another connection point to the developers it needs to court to build applications on its various platforms, including the Azure cloud. Microsoft could also use data from GitHub to improve its artificial intelligence producs.
The talks come amid GitHub's struggle to replace CEO and founder Chris Wanstrath, who stepped down 10 months ago. Business Insider reported that Microsoft exec Nat Friedman -- who previously ran Xamarin, a developer tools start-up that Microsoft acquired in 2016 -- may take that CEO role. Google's senior VP of ads and commerce, Sridhar Ramaswamy, has also been in discussions for the job, says the report.
Microsoft declined to comment on the report. GitHub did not immediately return a request for comment.
Read more from Business Insider.
--Jordan Novet contributed to this story.
World's oldest cat celebrates 30th birthday | Fox News
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 12:52
A British cat has been hailed as the oldest in the world - after celebrating its 30th birthday.
The ageing feline- named Rubble - has been with owner Michele Foster since she got him as a kitten on her 20th birthday May 1988. The pair have been inseparable ever since and Rubble has now matched the age of the last world record holder.
Rubble has been a loyal companion to Michele virtually all her adult life. (SWNS)
Rubble celebrated its milestone with a party at his local vets where he was treated to some of his favorite cat food and a free check-up. And his incredible longevity is put down to the fact that Michele never had her own children and pampers him like her child.
Michele, 50, said that despite possibly now owning the world's oldest cat she had never wanted to go down the record route as she didn't want Rubble turning into a celebrity. But she said she was still extremely proud of her cat's achievements.
"I was lonely living on my own so got him in as a kitten. It was in May 1988." (SWNS)
She said: "He's a lovely cat, although he has got a little grumpy in his old age. I got him just before my 20th birthday when he was a kitten. Rubble suffers from high blood pressure so he needs regular medication and City Vets have been a huge help in keeping him healthy."
The previous oldest living in the Britain - Nutmeg from Tyne and Wear - died last September. Rubble is now the same age as Scooter, a Siamese Texas, named as a record breaker at the age of 30 by the Guinness Book of World - but later died.
The oldest cat ever according to the record books is Creme Puff who was born on August 3, 1967, and lived until August 6, 2005 '' an amazing 38 years and three days.
Rubble celebrated its milestone with a party at his local vets where he was treated to some of his favorite cat food and a free check-up. (SWNS)
Michele says that despite Rubble's unique achievement she tried to keep him out of the spotlight.
She added: "He has plenty of live left in him yet, but I don't think we will go down the Guinness World Record route as I am not sure he would like lots of people coming to see him or a fuss being made out of him. He is old now and would not like too much attention or be hassled. We would prefer if he was just left to live out his old age in peace."
Michele, 49, lives in Exeter, Devon, England, and has three Persian cats Harley, Woody and Ted. And she remembers the exact moment that she first met Rubble and claims to be 100 per cent certain of the dates - because it was her 20th birthday.
She added: "He was part of a litter cat that my sister's friend had and I had just left home. I was lonely living on my own so got him in as a kitten. It was in May 1988."
Since then Rubble has been a loyal companion to Michele virtually all her adult life.
"If you care about something, no matter what it is, it does last." (SWNS)
She added: "He is very loyal. We used to live in London and moved around a lot. He came in the removal van to Devon with us when we moved 15 years ago.
"If you care about something and someone and really love them, that goes a long way. I have always treated him like a child - I don't have any children and had another cat called Meg - who passed at the age of 25. If you care about something, no matter what it is, it does last."
The feline - who is the equivalent of 137 human years - is a great big fluffy Maine Coon type cat and in great condition for his age.
Shaun Moore, from City Vets who looks after Rubble, said he is the oldest cat on their books.
He said: "We recently had this amazing cat in for a check up and to celebrate his 30th birthday. Rubble is quite likely to be the oldest cat in the UK and is still going strong. He is on medication for his blood pressure but apart from that, he is in remarkably good health being.
"He enjoyed a free check up, some Whiskas Catmilk and Felix pouches, and less appreciated a free supply of medication for the next month as his birthday present from City Vets."
This story was originally published by SWNS.
How blockchain could improve election transparency
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 12:49
The use of blockchain in the public sector reached another milestone this month when West Virginia became the first U.S. state to allow internet voting by blockchain in primary elections. While the voter participation through this platform was estimated to be small, the intention of the administrators was to test the technology in a pilot project with no immediate plans to implement it at a larger scale.
The idea of using blockchain for elections is worth more than just an experiment, however. Mobile voting using a safe and tested interface could eliminate voter fraud and boost turnout. It will make it more convenient for citizens to vote while abroad, irrespective of the distance and time. It is also a beneficial tool for the election commission to maintain transparency in the electoral process, minimize the cost of conducting elections, streamline the process of counting votes and ensure that all votes are counted.
Under the technology that was used in the West Virginia elections, a voter's identity is verified using biometric tools like a thumbprint scan before voting on a mobile device. Each vote forms part of a chain of votes, where it is mathematically proven by the third party participant. Using blockchain, all data of the election process can be recorded on a publicly verifiable ledger while maintaining the anonymity of voters, with results available instantly.
Open source software for transparent electionsThe use of blockchain in voting for elections can be further streamlined by using open source blockchain voting platforms. An open source platform does not have any proprietary elements to it, allowing any citizen or agency to audit the functionality of the application and contribute to improve its security. Rather, an open-source system is necessary to have a fool-proof election. There are several start-ups like Democracy Earth Foundation, Follow My Vote, democracyos.org, VoteWatcher, Milvum and VotoSocial that have sprouted in the recent years working in the area of open source online voting application following the open data philosophy.
At a time when elections'--even in advanced democracies'--are tainted with allegations of fraud or outside influence, use of technology to eliminate rigging is imperative. However, there is still skepticism around using blockchain for this purpose. For blockchain to be a viable option for conducting elections, certain challenges must be overcome. Public officials will have to understand the nuances of the technology and evaluate feedback received from voters and administrators alike.
The National Conference of State Legislatures describes several considerations for adopting electronic transmission of ballots, including privacy, security of the election process, security of the voter's computer, denial of service attack, voter coercion, auditability, authentication and inconvenience for the local election official. Blockchain has to be tested, be available at an optimum cost and be able to scale up for higher numbers of users. Political will to support a new technology is also necessary.
This highlights a need to create awareness among the government officials and build the technological capabilities for making possible a technology-driven, transparent electoral process. According to Pete Martin, CEO of Votem and a proponent of online voting, we are two years away from major online elections running on blockchain in the U.S. As governments change, the process of electing such governments is bound to change too'--and blockchain may have a part to play.
Emmanuel Macron: Modern President With Midas Touch
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 12:08
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From Germany's normally inscrutable Angela Merkel to India's nationalist Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Macron's youth, daring and optimism have bowled over world leaders who are lining up for photo-ops with "le Kid" as L'Express news weekly nicknamed the 39-year-old. AFP
Updated:June 11, 2017, 9:29 AM IST
French President Emmanuel Macron arrives for a visit of the ruins in the French martyr village of Oradour-sur-Glane in France on June 10, 2017. (REUTERS/Stephane Mahe)Paris: He's the man with the Midas touch '-- so far at least. Since taking office four weeks ago French President Emmanuel Macron's star has shone bright, restoring a sense of national pride.
From Germany's normally inscrutable Angela Merkel to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Macron's youth, daring and optimism have bowled over world leaders who are lining up for photo-ops with "le Kid" as L'Express news weekly nicknamed the 39-year-old.
Resistance is futile, as US President Donald Trump found out when he tried '-- but failed '-- to dominate Macron in a by now memorable white-knuckle handshake.
A few days later Trump dropped a bombshell when he confirmed plans to pull the US out of the Paris climate accord.
ALSO READ | Macron's Party in Driving Seat Before French Parliamentary Election
But he was arguably again upstaged by Macron, who replied with an English-language appeal to the world to "make our planet great again" '-- a slogan that has became a rallying cry for Trump critics.
"France is in vogue again, France is cool," Spain's El Pais newspaper wrote, comparing the Macronmania to the Obamamania that swept the US after Barack Obama was elected president in 2008.
At home, Macron's rivals have been trying to hold on as scores of lawmakers from across the left-right divide jump ship and join his centrist camp.
Given no chance two months ago of winning a majority, polls now show his year-old Republique en Marche (Republic on the Move, REM) party romping home in the June 11-June 18 parliamentary vote with between 385 and 415 seats in the 577-member National Assembly.
"At the moment you could take a goat wearing a Macron badge and it would have a good chance of being elected," joked BFMTV political commentator Christophe Barbier.
The son of two doctors from the northeastern city of Amiens had made a career out of breaking the mould.
The former investment banker is married to his 64-year-old former teacher Brigitte Macron, a glamorous divorced mother of three whom he fell for as a teen.
ALSO READ | Make the Planet Great Again: Macron Takes A Jibe At Trump
Their relationship was the subject of deep fascination during the presidential campaign, which the media-savvy Macron worked to his advantage.
His path to France's highest office is as unusual as their inter-generational love story.
Macron had never held elected office before throwing his hat into the ring to replace Francois Hollande, two years after Hollande promoted him from political unknown to become economy minister.
In a country where political careers have traditionally been built over decades, he took the risk of founding his own centrist party from scratch rather than seek the nomination of the right or left.
It was a gamble that paid off among voters disillusioned with the existing political class.
But it was initially met with cynicism, with rivals writing off the ambitious upstart as too inexperienced.
First slip-up
Macron pressed on, using his image as a moderniser to draw in thousands of volunteers to his party, originally called En Marche, which was modelled partly on Obama's 2008 grassroots campaign.
The downfall of the Socialists and a scandal engulfing the conservative Republicans fuelled his rise, allowing Macron to lead the battle against the far-right's Marine Le Pen whom he beat soundly in the election run-off.
En Marche was renamed Republique En Marche immediately after his victory.
While fans compare him to US president John F Kennedy he appears to be more inspired by Francois Mitterrand and Charles de Gaulle, two French presidents remembered for their monarchical approach.
Since his inauguration Macron has sought to restore lost grandeur to the presidency, delivering his victory speech in front of the Louvre museum '-- a former royal palace '-- and hosting Russian President Vladimir Putin at Versailles palace.
He also kept a tight rein on communications, to avoid the excessive media exposure that soured voters on Hollande and his predecessor Nicolas Sarkozy and to minimise the risk of slip-ups.
He failed to prevent one early blunder from being caught on camera, however.
During a visit to Brittany last week he was caught joking with officials about the flimsy "kwassa-kwassa" boats that transport migrants to the French Indian Ocean island of Mayotte in the Comoros archipelago.
"The kwassa-kwassa doesn't do much fishing, it carries Comorians," he said laughing.
The remark caused outrage given the thousands of migrants who have died in such crossings.
Macron's office later admitted to an "unfortunate quip that may have been hurtful".
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Scientists Made A Real-Life Flux Capacitor
Sat, 02 Jun 2018 15:05
Great Scott! A team of physicists just figured out how to make a flux capacitor.
No, it's not a real-life version of what was in the ''Back to the Future'' franchise (reminder: in the movies, the flux capacitor is the plutonium-powered device that makes time travel possible). While the version proposed by these scientists won't let you traipse through time, it could do something almost as cool: help usher in the quantum computing era.
The Australian and Swiss physicists behind the invention published their research Monday in the journal Physical Review Letters.
What the heck is this flux capacitor, anyway? Let's break it down. Capacitors are devices that store energy, and they're pretty common in the world of electronics. Flux, meanwhile, is the amount of something moving across a certain area. So in a flux capacitor, microwaves are the something, and the channel they move across is a central capacitor.
Ironically, while Doc and Marty didn't need roads where they were going, the best analogy for how the researchers' flux capacitor would work does involve traffic. The device forces microwaves to flow in just one direction around a center area, just like cars in a roundabout. This is pretty remarkable because it breaks something called time-reversal symmetry '-- a theoretical law of physics that states that, if you reversed time, you'd see whatever just happened, happen exactly in reverse, like a mirror image.
In this analogy, the cars represent the microwave signals and the land they circle is the capacitor. Credit: PINAVIAThe researchers propose two designs for their flux capacitor. One does resemble the Y-shaped device used in the movies, but is much more complicated than ''Back to the Future'' made it seem.
''In it, quantum 'tubes' of magnetic flux can move around a central capacitor by a process known as quantum tunneling, where they overcome classically insurmountable obstacles,'' theoretical physicist Jared Cole, one of the researchers behind the proposal, said in a news release.
We'll take your word for it.
The flux capacitor itself may be complex, but it's applications are clear. As the paper's lead author, Clemens Mueller, noted in the news release, the device could help researchers precisely control signals, necessary to advance quantum computing. It could also help us improve the electronics we use today, everything from smartphones to radar systems.
So, sorry, this flux capacitor won't give you the ability to travel back in time to bungle how your parents met, but did you really want to do that anyway? You could straight up erase yourself from existence! Much safer to leave the time travel to sci-fi and keep our eyes on the future.
US in early talks for summit between Trump and Putin
Sat, 02 Jun 2018 15:00
By David K. Li
June 1, 2018 | 9:27pm
Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump Getty Images
The White House and Kremlin are in early talks for a face-to-face meeting between President Trump and Russian strongman Vladimir Putin, according to a report published on Friday night.
The Wall Street Journal cited multiple unnamed sources who claimed such a summit is in the works, which could bring two of the world's most powerful men onto a single stage.
Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, now the US ambassador to Russia, has been on the front end of talks to bring the world leaders together, an official said.
''This has been an ongoing project of Ambassador Huntsman, stretching back months, of getting a formal meeting between Putin and Trump,'' the official said.
The on-going civil war in Syria, relations with Ukraine and nuclear arms control would be among topics in a potential Trump-Putin meeting.
Trump has long been an admirer of Putin, offering a congratulatory phone call to the Russian strongman last month, against the wishes of his own security advisers.
Why was Tommy Robinson arrested and jailed, and why were reporting restrictions in place?
Sat, 02 Jun 2018 11:39
It can now be reported that Tommy Robinson, the former leader of the English Defence League, convicted fraudster , sometime-football hooligan and self-reinvented free speech advocate, was on Friday 25 May 2018 imprisoned for 13 months for contempt of court after livestreaming footage of participants in a criminal trial outside Leeds Crown Court.
Some people will have seen reference to this on social media; others may have had the plight of Stephen Yaxley-Lennon '' to use his real name '' drawn to their attention by the hordes of protesters storming London over the May bank holiday weekend. But there has not, until 30 May, been mainstream coverage of the case due to a reporting restriction '' what is known as a ''postponement order'' '' that forbade publication of these facts until after the conclusion of the trial upon which he was purporting to ''report''.
While, as we'll see below, the reasons for the postponement order appear sound, the consequence of preventing fair and accurate reporting by responsible journalists was that there was no factual counterpoint to the selective and inaccurate details of Yaxley-Lennon's situation that were inevitably flooded through social media by his knuckle-dragging cheerleaders, not least his racists-in-arms across the pond. Thus sprung a (largely unchallenged and unchallengeable) narrative of Tommy The Brave being arrested outside court for no reason and imprisoned in secret by the deep state, culminating in petitions for his release and a march on Downing Street .
On the day itself, I attempted a post aimed at shining a little light on what might have happened (having no knowledge of the proceedings myself), but having been alerted by a reporter to the terms of the reporting restrictions, took the post down out of an abundance of caution. Now, however, with the restrictions relaxed we can try to restore a little order.
The full judgment is still awaited (expected imminently). For now let's take this story in pieces based on what we know . I shall update the blogpost regularly as further information arrives.
Why was Tommy Robinson arrested? Yaxley-Lennon was arrested outside Leeds Crown Court having video recorded a number of men '' including defendants involved in a live trial '' entering the court building, and livestreaming the footage on Facebook in what he claimed was an attempt at legitimate court reporting. West Yorkshire police, having been alerted to his activities, arrested Lennon at the scene. The initial reports suggested that he was arrested for a suspected breach of the peace, but what is now clear from the facts published today is that his actions in broadcasting details about the trial were in breach of reporting restrictions.
What are reporting restrictions? The starting point of our criminal justice system is that justice must be seen to be done. However the law provides for exceptions to open justice, known generally as ''reporting restrictions''. Reporting restrictions apply in a wide range of situations '' from automatic restrictions preventing the identification of a complainant in a sexual allegation, to restrictions preventing reporting of Youth Court proceedings, to discretionary restrictions protecting the identity of child witnesses in the adult courts. Further details, if you are interested, can be found here .
One breed of restriction order is something called a ''postponement order'', under section 4(2) of the Contempt of Court Act 1981. Postponement orders are not unusual, particularly where there are a series of linked trials '' for example, where allegations of drug networks involving 30 defendants are concerned, there will be several trials (it not being physically possible to accommodate 30 defendants in a single courtroom). To avoid jurors having their deliberations contaminated by what they might read or hear about the earlier linked trials, reporting of all of them is often postponed until the end. Where there is a separate-but-related issue, such as a contempt of court involving a third party, this can also be the subject of a section 4(2) order. The test is:
Would a fair, accurate and contemporaneous report of the proceedings (or part thereof) published in good faith create a substantial risk of prejudice to the administration of justice in those or other proceedings? Is an order postponing the publication of such reports necessary and are its terms proportionate? Would such an order eliminate the risk of prejudice to the administration of justice? Could less restrictive measures achieve the objective? On the specific facts of this case, does the public interest in protecting the administration of justice outweigh the strong public interest in open justice? This is what we had here. The judge had imposed a postponement order preventing the media from reporting on the ongoing trial until all linked trials had concluded.
Breaching a reporting restriction amounts to a contempt of court. Which is what Yaxley-Lennon admitted doing.
But I heard Tommy Robinson was arrested for a breach of the peace. What is a breach of the peace? How is a breach of the peace caused by someone simply filming? Police officers have common law powers (i.e. powers not set out in statute) to arrest somebody where a breach of the peace is committed or where the officer reasonably believes it will be committed in the immediate future. As to what constitutes a breach of the peace, it is defined in case law as follows: '' there is a breach of the peace whenever harm is actually done or is likely to be done to a person or in his presence to his property or a person is in fear of being so harmed through an assault, an affray, a riot, unlawful assembly or other disturbance .'' (R v Howell [1982] Q.B. 416) As we can see, it's a fairly broad definition.
The courts have confirmed that it covers situations where, for example, there are reasonable grounds to fear that a demonstrator or protestor is likely to incite violence, even violence against themselves. This appears to be applicable to the present case. Robinson provocatively filming defendants and streaming on Facebook for the edification of his cult, is the kind of thing which could, it might be argued, lead to a breach of the peace.
Once a person has been arrested for breaching the peace, the police have the power to detain that person where there is a real apprehension that if released they will renew the breach of the peace within a short time, and where the police believe that further detention is necessary to prevent this. Given Robinson's history of interfering with criminal trials and his defiance towards court orders, one can see why the police may have genuinely feared that he would have simply returned to court if not detained. The power of detention is time-limited '' the detainee must be released within 24 hours (if not charged), or for serious (indictable) offences, detention may be authorised up to 96 hours.
How can it be legal for somebody to be arrested for breach of the peace and then imprisoned for contempt? It is perfectly common for a person to be arrested on suspicion of one offence, and then ultimately charged or dealt with for another. In this case, it appears that Yaxley-Lennon was arrested and detained for causing or threatening a breach of the peace, and that the court, upon being made aware of his activities, directed that he be brought to court to be dealt with for contempt of court. Even if his original arrest and detention had been unlawful (and there is nothing at all to suggest that it was), this would have absolutely no bearing on the contempt proceedings. The ''breach of the peace'' angle is a red herring.
So back up a step '' what exactly is contempt of court? Contempt of court is a broad, catch-all term for various offences against the administration of justice. The law(s) of contempt are designed to safeguard the fairness of legal proceedings and to maintain the authority and dignity of the court. Some contempts are set out in statute, including the aptly-named Contempt of Court Act 1981 . This sets out what is referred to as ''strict liability contempt'' '' the rule that it is a contempt to publish any matter which creates a substantial risk of serious prejudice or impediment to the course of justice in legal proceedings, irrespective of the intention behind the publication. There is a defence available to publishers (which includes newspapers, TV and social media users) who can show they were providing ''a fair and accurate report of legal proceedings held in public, published contemporaneously and in good faith'', thus giving some latitude to the press and ensuring that the media do not shy away from accurate, factual reporting of criminal proceedings.
Other contempts are more eclectic, such as the prohibition on taking photographs or moving images inside a court building (or even drawing a picture '' court sketch artists have to draw outside the court from memory '' section 41 of the Criminal Justice Act 1925 ).
There is also a common law offence of ''criminal contempt'', which is defined by the courts as ''conduct that denotes wilful defiance of, or disrespect towards the court, or that wilfully challenges or affronts the authority of the court or the supremacy of the law itself.'' This might include refusing to answer questions in court, physically disrupting court proceedings, interfering with witnesses or jurors (where not charged as a distinct offence of witness intimidation or perverting the course of justice) or defying a judge's order.
Which brings us back to Mr Yaxley-Lennon, and a sunny day in May last year at Canterbury Crown Court.
What happened at Canterbury Crown Court? On 8 May 2017, during the course of a rape trial at Canterbury Crown Court involving four (Asian) defendants, Yaxley-Lennon attended court and attempted to film the defendants for an online broadcast entitled ''Tommy Robinson in Canterbury exposing Muslim child rapists''. He was thwarted by the judge making arrangements for the defendants and jurors to leave court through alternative routes, and so settled for filming himself on camera, both on the court steps and inside the court building, preaching to his online followers about ''Muslim paedophiles''. He was interrupted and told by court staff that recording was prohibited (section 41 of the Criminal Justice Act 1925, as we've discussed above), but continued to record, insisting that he had been told by a different court that he was entitled to film the defendants (notwithstanding that court buildings are plastered with signs reminding people not to do this). His video diatribe '' in which he said that ''the paedophiles are hiding'', that the police had asked him not to ''expose'' them as paedophiles (presumably on the basis that they were, at that time, defendants in a live trial) but that ''we will'', and that he would be ''going round to their house'' to catch the defendants on camera '' thus continued. The judge hearing the rape trial was made aware, and he was brought before court to be dealt with for contempt of court.
The judge, HHJ Norton, dealt with Yaxley-Lennon on 22 May 2017. She found that he was in contempt by having filmed inside the court building, contrary to section 41, but was also in common law contempt by having continued to film having been told to stop by the court staff. The judge considered the content of his broadcast, and the real risk of his actions derailing the trial, and committed him to prison for 3 months, suspended for a period of 18 months. In practical terms, a suspended sentence means that the prison sentence (3 months) hangs over you for the operational period (18 months). If you remain offence-free and comply with any requirements the court makes, you will never have to serve your sentence. If you reoffend, the presumption in law is that you will serve that prison sentence, additional to whatever sentence you receive for the new offence.
So what you're saying is that Tommy Robinson was given a suspended sentence simply for trying to report on a case? Free speech is truly dead. No, ye of little brain. He was found to be in contempt of court and given a suspended sentence because his actions put a serious criminal trial in jeopardy. Running around a court building shouting ''paedophile'' at defendants during a live trial, or live-streaming defendants and members of the public '' potentially including jurors '' entering and exiting a court building against a tub thumping narration of ''Muslim paedophile gangs'', is hardly conducive to ensuring a fair trial. And if there can't be a fair trial, nobody gets justice. Not the accused, not the complainants, not the public. This is not theoretical '' serious criminal trials have nearly collapsed because of the actions of people like Yaxley-Lennon.
We have a quaint tradition in England and Wales that trial by media should be avoided, and that trial on evidence heard in court is the fairest way to determine a person's guilt. Therefore while criminal courts are open to the public, and it is absolutely fine to report soberly and accurately about ongoing criminal trials, anything which might prejudice or intimidate the jury is strictly forbidden. And this makes sense. It would be a nonsense, for example, to have strict laws preventing individuals from walking up to a juror to say, ''The defendant you are trying is plainly a dirty paedophile'', but to allow broadcasters or tabloid columnists to trumpet that message to jurors through the media. Self-defined ''free-speech advocates'' '' particularly a number on the other side of the Atlantic '' have difficulty understanding this, so it's worth pasting in full what HHJ Norton said:
''This contempt hearing is not about free speech. This is not about freedom of the press. This is not about legitimate journalism; this is not about political correctness; this is not about whether one political viewpoint is right or another. It is about justice, and it is about ensuring that a trial can be carried out justly and fairly. It is about ensuring that a jury are not in any way inhibited from carrying out their important function. It is about being innocent until proven guilty. It is not about people prejudging a situation and going round to that court and publishing material, whether in print or online, referring to defendants as ''Muslim paedophile rapists''.
''A legitimate journalist would not be able to do that and under the strict liability rule there would be no defence to publication in those terms. It is pejorative language which prejudges the case, and it is language and reporting '' if reporting indeed is what it is '' that could have had the effect of substantially derailing the trial. As I have already indicated, because of what I knew was going on I had to take avoiding action to make sure that the integrity of this trial was preserved, that justice was preserved and that the trial could continue to completion without people being intimidated into reaching conclusions about it, or into being affected by ''irresponsible and inaccurate reporting''. If something of the nature of that which you put out on social media had been put into the mainstream press I would have been faced with applications from the defence advocates concerned, I have no doubt, to either say something specific to the jury, or worse, to abandon the trial and to start again. That is the kind of thing that actions such as these can and do have, and that is why you have been dealt with in the way in which you have and why I am dealing with this case with the seriousness which I am.''
How is all that relevant to what took place on 25 May 2018? It is relevant because, when passing the suspended sentence, HHJ Norton gave some fairly clear warnings to Yaxley-Lennon:
''In short, Mr Yaxley-Lennon, turn up at another court, refer to people as ''Muslim paedophiles, Muslim rapists'' and so and so forth while trials are ongoing and before there has been a finding by a jury that that is what they are, and you will find yourself inside. Do you understand?''
And what did Yaxley-Lennon go and do?
What did he go and do? As we know now, he went and committed a contempt of court by reporting on court proceedings. He did so in a way that expressed his ''views'' on the guilt or otherwise of the defendants, creating a substantial risk of serious prejudice to the proceedings by jurors seeing or becoming aware of his ill-informed ramblings. If this wasn't enough, he was also in breach of reporting restrictions which he accepted he knew about. He was therefore, it seems, in contempt twice over. This could have led to an application by the defence advocates to discharge the jury and start afresh, potentially meaning vulnerable complainants having to go through the trauma of a trial all over again, or even an application to ''stay'' (bring to an end) the proceedings altogether.
Importantly, Yaxley-Lennon admitted that he was in contempt of court .
And he was committed to prison for 10 months, with the suspended sentence of 3 months activated and directed to run consecutively. Exactly as he'd been warned.
He was tried in secret on the day he was arrested, with no lawyers and the media were banned from reporting what had happened. This is Kafka on steroids, surely? Contempt proceedings do not attract a jury trial. The procedure for a court dealing with a criminal contempt is set out in the Criminal Procedure Rules . These allow for a ''summary procedure'', where the court, having made its own enquiries and offered a contemnor (for that is the official term) the chance to seek legal advice, can deal with the offender straight away. The Crown Court can commit a contemnor to prison for up to two years. There is nothing unusual in him being dealt with on the day of the contempt. Courts are required to deal with contempts as swiftly as possible. There is no suggestion of any prejudice; Yaxley-Lennon was legally represented by an experienced barrister and would have received full legal advice.
He also wasn't tried in secret; his contempt hearing was heard in public, with members of the press present. However, the judge imposed temporary reporting restrictions (under section 4(2) of the Contempt of Court Act 1981 again), postponing reporting of the details of Lennon's contempt until the trial, and the subsequent related trial, had concluded. This, you may think, is for obvious reasons. A media circus and orchestrated attempt at martyrdom by Lennon and his followers '' as was indeed attempted when the restrictions were defied by far-right blogs and foreign news outlets '' would present exactly the sort of distraction that threatened to disrupt the very serious criminal proceedings that the judge was desperately seeking to keep on the rails.
In the event, the repeated breaches of the order by foreign news outlets and social media users meant that the judge's intentions were thwarted. An application to discharge the reporting restriction was made on 29 May 2018 and the judge agreed that, in light of what had happened over the Bank Holiday weekend, restrictions should be lifted to allow publication of the facts.
It is also worth noting that there is a Practice Direction dealing with situations where defendants are imprisoned for contempt of court. This requires that full judgments be published online and handed to the media where a person is committed to prison for contempt. As we can expect imminently.
As for the suggestion (by UKIP among others) that nobody has ever before been found in contempt of court and a postponement order made preventing the media from immediately reporting it, a handy example can be found on 22 May 2017, where one Stephen Yaxley-Lennon was found to be in contempt at Canterbury, and a postponement order was made restricting publication until the end of the substantive trial.
In light of the (frankly ingenious) conspiracy theories that are now doing the rounds after the rather mundane truth above was revealed, some bonus Q&As are required:
I heard that Tommy Robinson was denied his own lawyer, and had to have a duty lawyer who was in fact a PROSECUTION lawyer and who didn't properly defend him. The barrister previously instructed by Yaxley-Lennon has confirmed that she was not present at court for these proceedings. She is understandably declining to comment further unless or until authorised to do so. But in any case, Yaxley-Lennon was defended by an experienced member of the independent criminal Bar. He may have been offered the duty solicitor at the police station if his chosen solicitor was not available, but in the Crown Court hearing he was advised and represented by a specialist criminal barrister with over 16 years of experience of cases including murder, people-trafficking, serious violence and serious sexual offences. As an independent barrister, this professional prosecutes as well as defends (most of us do), but his website profile in fact emphasises his experience as a defence advocate. In other words, Yaxley-Lennon had a top-notch defence barrister fighting his corner.
No trial has ever taken place on the same day as a suspect's arrest, oh FAKE LAWYER. This was special treatment dished out to a man who is a thorn in the side of the establishment. What do you say about that? If we were talking about jury trials, I'd agree with you. But Yaxley-Lennon was not ''tried''. The contempt proceedings were held on the same day, as is entirely standard (see details of the summary procedure for contempt above), and he admitted that he was in contempt of court. There is no special treatment here whatsoever. Anyone, infamous far-right totem or otherwise, would have been subject to the exact same process for contempt in breaching a reporting restriction. Not everyone would have been sent straight to prison; but then not everyone has a suspended sentence hanging over them for a near-identical offence.
But the BBC reported on the same trial that Tommy did, and they're not in prison. Why not? Because any BBC reports, which as far as I have seen relate entirely to the outset of proceedings before the judge made the reporting restriction, were not in contempt of court. They were fair and accurate, rather than propagandist rants seeking to disseminate information that a judge had specifically ordered should not be in the public domain ( such as details of charges against the defendants that had been dropped ), and were not in breach of reporting restrictions.
This post appeared in its original form on the Secret Barrister blog. This post has been updated on 01/06/2018
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Tommy Robinson has been jailed for 13 months for contempt of court
Dubbel betalen voor tv | Binnenland | Telegraaf.nl
Sat, 02 Jun 2018 10:45
Door Rob Goossens
Updated 3 uur geleden
Vandaag, 05:30 in BINNENLAND
Hilversum - De tv-kijker moet volgend jaar extra geld neerleggen om programma's van de publieke omroep te kunnen zien. Om het krimpende budget uit Den Haag te compenseren, geeft de NPO vol gas met zijn betaaldienst NPO Start Plus.
Programma's die nu nog gewoon te zien zijn op de openbare netten, vooral documentaires en drama, verdwijnen straks achter een betaalmuur. Dit blijkt uit het Jaarplan Video 2019, dat in handen is van deze krant.
Voor de tv-kijker betekenen de voornemens dat er voor het zien van veel geliefde programma's twee keer betaald zal moeten worden. Nadat eerst de Belastingdienst al heeft ge¯nd, moet de kijker nu ook een abonnement nemen op NPO Start Plus. Dat kost 2,95 euro per maand en zou met alle nieuwe programma's ook duurder kunnen worden.
'62 miljoen euro minder'De NPO heeft de plannen ontwikkeld vanwege grote bezorgdheid over de financiering uit Den Haag. Naar verwachting krijgt Hilversum komend jaar 62 miljoen euro minder dan nu.
De politiek heeft tijdenlang tegengehouden dat de NPO naast het belastinggeld ook eigen inkomsten zou genereren. Na aanpassingen in de Mediawet, twee jaar geleden, heeft de politiek die teugels laten vieren.
Lees het hele verhaal: Kijker met de rug tegen betaalmuur [EXTRA]
Analyse: NPO dwingt Slob tot principieel standpunt [EXTRA]
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Uitschrijven kan met 1 klik
Michaela Angela Davis - Wikipedia
Sat, 02 Jun 2018 04:31
Michaela Angela Davis is a writer on African-American style, race, gender and hip-hop culture in the United States. She is also a fashion expert and an "image activist."
Michaela Angela Davis Michaela Angela Davis at the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival
Born United States NationalityAmericanOccupationWriter, image activistContents
Early life Edit Publishing and writing career Edit After completing her studies, Davis went to work in 1991 for Essence as an associate fashion editor.[3] Her first assignment was the styling of Anita Hill.[1]
She was the associate fashion, culture and the executive fashion and beauty editor for Essence magazine.[4] She was the founding fashion director for Vibe magazine, and she was the last editor-in-chief of Honey, a magazine for 18- to 34-year-old black women. Davis has written for many projects such as Everything But the Burden: What White People are Taking from Black Culture (ed. Greg Tate;[5] Broadway Books, 2003), and authored Beloved Baby: A Baby's Scrapbook and Journal (Pocket Books, 1995).[3] On the issue of colorism within the black community, Davis has said that "Anything that tears us apart as sisters, there's no privilege in, we have equal pain, it's just different and has been processed and presented to us in different ways."[1]
Stylist Edit She was also a celebrity stylist for people such as Oprah Winfrey, Beyonc(C), Prince, Diana Ross, Donald Trump, Mary J. Blige and LL Cool J. She has worked as a stylist on several films, including the 2002 film Paid in Full.[3]
Film career Edit She has been featured in documentary films including The Souls of Black Girls (2008). Davis has had several television appearances, most recently on BET in their presentation of Hip Hop vs. America II: Am I My Sister's Keeper?
Activism and mentoring Edit Davis is developing an online magazine and television show, and a documentary film and book exploring race, gender, beauty and identity. She serves on the board of Black Girls Rock!, Imagenation, The Brooklyn Community Arts and Media High School, and conducts her own monthly career-mentoring program called Salon de Shine. She regularly speaks on campuses and in the community. She is currently working a novel called ''The Revolution of Happiness: A Book and Digital Conversation Project.'' It is a culmination of ''honest and innovative cross-generational conversations with revolutionary-thinking Black women about disturbing the pain that has burdened or molested our natural exquisite selves.''[6]
Davis is the leader of "Mad Free," a multi-platform, multi-generational critical community conversation[7] with revolutionary women whose work and lives serve to liberate the narrow and misinformed image of women.
References Edit ^ a b c d Michaela Angela Davis: The Makings of an Urbanista, Ganeka Gray, Clutch Magazine, August 1, 2008 ^ BEAUTIFUL BLACK SPOTLIGHT: Michaela Angela Davis, The Sauda Voice, December 21, 2008 ^ a b c Michaela Angela Davis biography, American Program Bureau speakers ^ "Essence magazine criticized for hiring white Fashion Director : Urbanmecca.com | African American News" . Retrieved 2011-04-26 . ^ Everything But the Burden, amazon.com. Retrieved 2015-06-25. ^ The Editor (July 21, 2011). "This Black Girl Rocks: Image Activist Michaela Angela Davis". Madame Noire. ^ "Mad Free". Tumblr. Archived from the original on 2015-05-04. External links Edit
Forget Facebook? Why Marketers Are Embracing Pinterest and Instagram '' Adweek
Sat, 02 Jun 2018 03:05
Opinion: Both platforms are interest-basedPinterest and Instagram provide a better frame of mind for shopping
Facebook's News Feed is a lot of things, but these days, it's rarely inspirational.
With 2.13 billion monthly users, Facebook has more reach than any other social network, but it's not the best option for consumers to get ideas and enjoy visually pleasing experiences. In recent years, Pinterest and Instagram have filled that void.
The visual nature of Pinterest and Instagram puts more focus on imagery and style. They're a welcome alternative to Facebook's status updates, political rants and personal milestones. The two networks are where consumers turn to find visual inspiration, whether it's in food, fashion or home design.
Marketers are also finding Pinterest and Instagram to be upbeat, fun and conducive to advertising messages.
In fact, Pinterest was on track to post $500 million in revenues in 2017, up 67 percent from 2016. Facebook doesn't disclose Instagram's revenues, but it did announce that the photo- and video-sharing network had doubled its total number of advertisers in six months, surpassing 1 million last March.
Providing a source of visual inspiration is just one reason why Pinterest and Instagram are effective places to advertise. Here are three more:
Both platforms are interest-based: Many users stumble upon Pinterest because they're doing a Google search around a hobby and Google serves them links to Pinterest content. When searching ''Japanese woodworking,'' for example, this Pinterest link featuring photos of such work shows up on the front page. Often, users are looking for inspiration rather than text'--Pinterest's visual format fits that need. Advertisers are catching on. There's been a shift in the past few months as marketers request to reallocate money from Google and Bing to Pinterest searches. In addition, Instagram has built a strong following because the platform makes it easy for users to follow their interests. Those can range from fashion to cooking to fitness, among many others. Plus, users on Instagram are motivated to post items that are going to connect with those who have shared interests.Pinterest and Instagram provide a better frame of mind for shopping: People don't naturally visit Facebook to go shopping. Facebook's efforts to bring e-commerce to the platform have been disappointing, although its Marketplace feature may be bearing some fruit. Why has Facebook had such trouble launching commerce on its platform? Facebook is a hangout place'--a forum for people to connect and socialize'--not a place where people go to get things done. As one analyst noted, selling stuff on Facebook is like doing a sales pitch during a party while people are trying to have fun (or argue about politics). In contrast, Pinterest and Instagram users are often in the ''shopping mindset.'' Shopping on Pinterest and Instagram is also very user-friendly, since both offer one-click purchases.Their content is evergreen: A Facebook post has a short shelf life, getting most of its reach in the first half-hour. This means that tracking down a Facebook post often isn't worth the trouble. Although Instagram is oriented this way too, scrolling through a user's or brand's feed is easy and rewarding. Doing the same on Facebook means encountering a lot of random updates. Pinterest, meanwhile, includes a lot of evergreen content, which makes sense. If you're into home design, you don't necessarily want to see the latest post. Instead, you want to see the one that serves your particular interest or gets the most engagement. This again ties in with an advertiser's goal to get in front of users who are serious about what they're searching for.If you're looking to reach consumers who are following their passions, looking for ideas and are more open to your marketing message, consider loading up on Instagram and Pinterest.
Katie Townsley is vice president and executive director of social at digital agency MXM.
New RICO Suit Against Weinstein Claims Brafman Firm Deceived Accuser | New York Law Journal
Sat, 02 Jun 2018 02:50
Benjamin Brafman in his midtown New York law office. (Photo: David Handschuh/NYLJ)In a class action lawsuit filed Friday in Manhattan federal court, three more women have alleged they were sexually assaulted by former Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein.
Caitlin Dulany, Larissa Gomes, and Melissa Thompson allege they were each the target of Weinstein's predations, which were facilitated by his production companies Miramax and The Weinstein Co., along with individuals at those companies, as part of an ongoing criminal enterprise. The suit alleges violations of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act.
Among the defendants named in the suit are Miramax and the Walt DIsney Co., which now owns the studio.
Their claims join a suit filed in December by the same law firms, Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro and The Armenta Law Firm, that laid out similar RICO claims against Weinstein and his associates by six women who all claimed to have likewise been harassed and assaulted by the former movie mogul. Additionally, the firm filed a parallel suit against Weinstein and others last November.
''Harvey Weinstein may have been put in handcuffs for his assault on two women, but we are working to see a day of justice for the hundreds of women who were exploited for Weinstein's sexual gratification and silenced by this ring of conspirators,'' said Hagens Berman partner Elizabeth Fegan in a statement.
The suit filed Friday includes the claim that a lawyer with the firm of Benjamin Brafman, who is Weinstein's defense counsel, used deceptive practices to trick one of the plaintiffs, Thompson, into handing over evidence against Weinstein she says she had in her possession. Brafman denied the claim in a statement.
According to the complaint, Thompson was not told the Brafman firm was actually working for Weinstein. She alleged a lawyer with the firm presented himself as working for the victims of Weinstein, and she didn't learn that fact until after she handed material over to the firm.
Brafman, who is currently representing Weinstein in the criminal case brought against him by the Manhattan district attorney's office, said in a statement that he never met with Thompson or any of the other plaintiffs in the suit.
The lawsuit alleges that Alex Spiro, when with the Brafman firm, interacted with Thompson. According to Thompson, she and Spiro began talking in October, under the conceit he was gathering information to analyze her claim against Weinstein. She alleges they went so far as to discuss legal strategies Weinstein's victims could employ.
In a statement, Brafman said Spiro left the firm in September 2017. Allegations of sexual misconduct against Weinstein first emerged in October 2017 with reports in the New York Times and The New Yorker magazine.
''To the extent he spoke with or met with any of these women, he did so on his own time after he had left this firm and was already employed by Quinn Emanuel,'' Brafman said. ''In addition, while at this firm, he never met with Mr Weinstein nor did he have any responsibility whatsoever in connection with our representation of Mr Weinstein in any matter.''
Spiro, a partner at Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, said in a statement, ''I never have and I never would represent Harvey Weinstein, I left the Brafman firm well before Brafman ever represented Weinstein, and, in fact, I represent one of the key victims, but Ms. Thompson has never been a client.''
The RICO suit did not name Brafman, his firm or Spiro as a defendant.
While each plaintiff's claim is unique'--Dulany, for example, says she met Weinstein outside the Miramax office in 1996, while Gomes says Weinstein lured her to a hotel with promises of helping her career'--all share stories of unwanted advances, inappropriate touching, and attempts at forcing each woman into sex acts. In the case of Thompson, who went to Weinstein to pitch a technology venture she was working on, the movie producer is alleged to have forcibly rape her.
Citing numerous media accounts, the complaint goes on to allege Weinstein's assistants and colleagues either actively participated in the luring in of the alleged victims, or helped him to cover up and in some cases actively intimidate those assaulted as part of ''the Weinstein Sexual Enterprise.''
In a statement, Kupferstein Manuel name attorney Phyllis Kupferstein, who is part of the legal team representing Weinstein in the previous RICO suit filed in the Southern District of New York, said the latest suit ''suffers from the same lack of merit'' as the previous suit, which Weinstein's team has sought to dismiss.
Lame Cherry: The True Tale of American White Hat Patriotism
Fri, 01 Jun 2018 23:40
As another Lame Cherry exclusive in matter anti matter.This is a short lesson in all of the fiction of the good guy John Wayne white hat Patriotism which each of you is told to rally behind, when in reality you decide how this stacks up.We have a nation called Syria.It has oil and gas fields.Here is a map to provide you with visual aids. Now Syria had oil fields, developed by American companies.Birther Hussein moved terrorists out of Iraq into Syria to overthrow President Assad and this mysterious ISIS appeared. By coincidence the Syrian oil fields were the lands seized by ISIS, and this oil brought in billions of dollars to ISIS.ISIS it was learned was just Kurds, who had lots of oil trucks in convoys and that oil all ended up on the Turkish blackmarket.Now some might remember that John McCain and Birther Hussein just loved ISIS, funded them, took photos with them, armed them with Khadaffi's weapons out of Libya and trained them in Jordan, where Dyncorp manages things.Some might remember that Reince Priebus in Reverse Speech by David John Oates talked about this Muslim money coming into the American political parties.Meanwhile Donald Trump is President, and suddenly ISIS is bad again, and suddenly the Americans are waging a war, where no one knows quite just that war is in Syria, but in the end the news breaks that America is in control of the Syrian oil fields, and those fields are still pumping out oil, but it is not going to Turkey as Turkey was furious in being cut off, and now is with Russia in a Gazprom pipeline.“It’s incredibly important that with all these oil-rich areas … we don’t end up in a situation where we do have to pull out and there is some sort of deal that allows Iran to essentially take the land, the oil, and these areas, and empower their land bridge that they’ve been building inside the country,” he said. “We took the oil. We’ve got to keep the oil.”Odd is it not, that American blood, American money is all used to acquire all this oil from Iraq, Libya and Syria, and American's oil prices only climb and Americans get poorer. Remember Donald Trump was spouting off about taking oil to pay for all these trillions, and yet America has this oil in Syria and it is going someplace and so are these billions.How much do you want to wager that Donald Trump's new mercenary Presidential adviser from Dyncorp in Stephan Freidman is mopping up that oil revenue as it provides protection for American CIA policy off books to fund this growing American mercenary conglomerate projecting American power.Kind of a different deal is it not? Obama stole Syrian oil to bribe Turkey for Greater Judea in Obama Wars and now a new Trump mercenary conglomerate appears to have a perpetual tap in mercenary oil money, while America's gas prices are spiking and we still do not know what happened to  a missing 8.7 billion dollars that Dyncorp looted from the Department of Defense.DoD's lost $8.7 Billion: What About The Pentagon's Missing ...DoD's lost $8.7 Billion: What About The Pentagon's ... But some think it was siphoned off through companies like DynCorp, ... More than $9 billion went missing. https://www.prisonplanet.com /disappearing-act-8-7-billion-o Wear your white hat patriotism as a cover for this true reality. John Wayne fights your wars but the Shylock are looting the nations in America's name.Are you paying attention in this or should the Lame Cherry write this in English and translate in the DIA now has Mr. President being advised by a mercenary conglomerate which stole almost 9 billion dollars and it looks now that in this interesting oil possession in Syria, that the Syrian people's oil are being robbed as Americans have been, but in this case there is a multi billion dollar funding source for Mr. President's mercenary war, off book, without any oversight and it is Mr. President's personal army the DIA can deploy anywhere in the world.Stealing some one's oil is illegal. Stealing some one's oil and still screwing American's over is treason.Nuff SaidagtG
Google Is Helping the Pentagon Build AI for Drones
Fri, 01 Jun 2018 21:38
Graphic: Jim Cooke, Photo: GettyGoogle has partnered with the United States Department of Defense to help the agency develop artificial intelligence for analyzing drone footage, a move that set off a firestorm among employees of the technology giant when they learned of Google's involvement.
Google's pilot project with the Defense Department's Project Maven, an effort to identify objects in drone footage, has not been previously reported, but it was discussed widely within the company last week when information about the project was shared on an internal mailing list, according to sources who asked not to be named because they were not authorized to speak publicly about the project.
Some Google employees were outraged that the company would offer resources to the military for surveillance technology involved in drone operations, sources said, while others argued that the project raised important ethical questions about the development and use of machine learning.
Google's Eric Schmidt summed up the tech industry's concerns about collaborating with the Pentagon at a talk last fall. ''There's a general concern in the tech community of somehow the military-industrial complex using their stuff to kill people incorrectly,'' he said. While Google says its involvement in Project Maven is not related to combat uses, the issue has still sparked concern among employees, sources said.
Project Maven, a fast-moving Pentagon project also known as the Algorithmic Warfare Cross-Functional Team (AWCFT), was established in April 2017. Maven's stated mission is to ''accelerate DoD's integration of big data and machine learning.'' In total, the Defense Department spent $7.4 billion on artificial intelligence-related areas in 2017, the Wall Street Journal reported.
The project's first assignment was to help the Pentagon efficiently process the deluge of video footage collected daily by its aerial drones'--an amount of footage so vast that human analysts can't keep up, according to Greg Allen, an adjunct fellow at the Center for a New American Security, who co-authored a lengthy July 2017 report on the military's use of artificial intelligence. Although the Defense Department has poured resources into the development of advanced sensor technology to gather information during drone flights, it has lagged in creating analysis tools to comb through the data.
''Before Maven, nobody in the department had a clue how to properly buy, field, and implement AI,'' Allen wrote.
Maven was tasked with using machine learning to identify vehicles and other objects in drone footage, taking that burden off analysts. Maven's initial goal was to provide the military with advanced computer vision, enabling the automated detection and identification of objects in as many as 38 categories captured by a drone's full-motion camera, according to the Pentagon. Maven provides the department with the ability to track individuals as they come and go from different locations.
Artificial intelligence is already deployed in law enforcement and military applications, but researchers warn that these systems may be significantly biased in ways that aren't easily detectible. For example, ProPublica reported in 2016 that an algorithm used to predict the likelihood of recidivism among inmates routinely exhibited racial bias.
Although Google's involvement stirred up concern among employees, it's possible that Google's own product offerings limit its access to sensitive government data. While its cloud competitors, Amazon and Microsoft Azure, offer government-oriented cloud products designed to hold information classified as secret, Google does not currently have a similar product offering.
A Google spokesperson told Gizmodo in a statement that it is providing the Defense Department with TensorFlow APIs, which are used in machine learning applications, to help military analysts detect objects in images. Acknowledging the controversial nature of using machine learning for military purposes, the spokesperson said the company is currently working ''to develop polices and safeguards'' around its use.
''We have long worked with government agencies to provide technology solutions. This specific project is a pilot with the Department of Defense, to provide open source TensorFlow APIs that can assist in object recognition on unclassified data,'' the spokesperson said. ''The technology flags images for human review, and is for non-offensive uses only. Military use of machine learning naturally raises valid concerns. We're actively discussing this important topic internally and with others as we continue to develop policies and safeguards around the development and use of our machine learning technologies.''
The Defense Department set an aggressive timeline for Maven'--the project was expected to be up and running just six months after it was founded, and reportedly has been deployed in the fight against the Islamic State since December.
To meet the aggressive timetable, the Defense Department partnered with AI experts in the tech industry and academia, working through Defense Information Unit Experimental, the department's tech incubation program, and the Defense Innovation Board, an advisory group created by former Secretary of Defense Ash Carter to bridge the technological gap between the Pentagon and Silicon Valley.
Schmidt, who stepped down as executive chairman of Google parent company Alphabet last month, chairs the Defense Innovation Board. During a July meeting, Schmidt and other members of the Defense Innovation Board discussed the Department of Defense's need to create a clearinghouse for training data that could be used to enhance the military's AI capability. Board members played an ''advisory role'' on Project Maven, according to meeting minutes, while ''some members of the Board's teams are part of the executive steering group that is able to provide rapid input'' on Project Maven.
Maven is overseen by the undersecretary for defense intelligence and Lt. Gen. John Shanahan was selected as the project's director. Maven was designed to be the spark, according to Shanahan, that would kindle ''the flame front of artificial intelligence'' across the entire Defense Department.
By summer 2017, the team set out to locate commercial partners whose expertise was needed to make its AI dreams a reality. At the Defense One Tech Summit in Washington, Maven chief Marine Corps Col. Drew Cukor said a symbiotic relationship between humans and computers was crucial to help weapon systems detect objects.
Speaking to a crowd of military and industry technology experts, many from Silicon Valley, Cukor professed the US to be in the midst of AI arms race. ''Many of you will have noted that Eric Schmidt is calling Google an AI company now, not a data company,'' he said, although Cukor did not specifically cite Google as a Maven partner.
''There is no 'black box' that delivers the AI system the government needs, at least not now,'' he continued. ''Key elements have to be put together '... and the only way to do that is with commercial partners alongside us.''
A spokesperson for the Defense Department declined to say whether Google was its only private industry partner on Project Maven or to clarify Google's role in the project.
''Similar to other DOD programs, Project Maven does not comment on the specifics of contract details, including the names and identities of program contractors and subcontractors,'' the spokesperson said.
Have a tip about Google and Project Maven? Contact Kate Conger at kate.conger@gizmodo.com or Dell Cameron at dell.cameron@gizmodo.com.
Your Body Has A 'Second Brain' In Your Butt, Scientists Say '' CBS Denver
Fri, 01 Jun 2018 16:18
AUSTRALIA (CBS Local) '' You've probably had a ''gut feeling'' during your life, but did you know your gut is actually ''thinking'' too? According to scientists in Australia, the human body has a ''second brain'' in its rear end and it may be smarter than we think.
A study published in the journal JNeurosci says that the gastrointestinal tract contains millions of neurons, which independently control muscle movement in the colon.
''These findings identify a previously unknown pattern of neuronal activity in the peripheral nervous system,'' Prof. Nick Spencer from Flinders University in Australia said in a press release.
''Until this new study no one had any idea exactly how large populations of neurons in the ENS lead to contraction of the intestine,'' he added, via Science Alert.
Researchers discovered that the neurons in the digestive system fire in synchronized blasts, which propel waste out of the body. This is the same way neurons in the brain fire as they send signals throughout the body.
Spencer and his team believe the same results will be found in other mammals including humans, even though the Australian study was conducted with mice,
''We can use this as a blueprint to understand how dysfunctional neurogenic motor patterns may arise along the colon,'' Spencer said.
The professor noted that the brain in your rear is technically your ''first brain'' because scientists believe it actually evolved before the brain and central nervous system in mammals.
AI winter is well on its way '' Piekniewski's blog
Fri, 01 Jun 2018 13:56
Deep learning has been at the forefront of the so called AI revolution for quite a few years now, and many people had believed that it is the silver bullet that will take us to the world of wonders of technological singularity (general AI). Many bets were made in 2014, 2015 and 2016 when still new boundaries were pushed, such as the Alpha Go etc. Companies such as Tesla were announcing through the mouths of their CEO's that fully self driving car was very close, to the point that Tesla even started selling that option to customers [to be enabled by future software update].
We have now mid 2018 and things have changed. Not on the surface yet, NIPS conference is still oversold, the corporate PR still has AI all over its press releases, Elon Musk still keeps promising self driving cars and Google CEO keeps repeating Andrew Ng's slogan that AI is bigger than electricity. But this narrative begins to crack. And as I predicted in my older post, the place where the cracks are most visible is autonomous driving - an actual application of the technology in the real world.
The dust settled on deep learningWhen the ImageNet has been effectively solved (note this does not mean that vision is solved), many prominent researchers in the field (including even typically quiet Geoff Hinton) were actively giving press interviews, publicizing stuff on social media (e.g. Yann Lecun, Andrew Ng, Fei-Fei Li to name a few). The general tone was that we are in front of a gigantic revolution and from now on things can only accelerate. Well years have passed and the twitter feeds of those people became less active, as exemplified by Andrew Ng below:
2013 - 0.413 tweets per day2014 - 0.605 tweets per day2015 - 0.320 tweets per day2016 - 0.802 tweets per day2017 - 0.668 tweets per day2018 - 0.263 tweets per day (until 24 May)
Perhaps this is because Andrew's outrageous claims are now put to more scrutiny by the community as indicated in a tweet below:
Visibly the sentiment has quite considerably declined, there are much fewer tweets praising deep learning as the ultimate algorithm, the papers are becoming less "revolutionary" and much more "evolutionary". Deepmind hasn't shown anything breathtaking since their Alpha Go zero [and even that wasn't that exciting, given the obscene amount of compute necessary and applicability to games only - see Moravec's paradox]. OpenAI was rather quiet, with their last media outburst being the Dota 2 playing agent [which I suppose was meant to create as much buzz as Alpha Go, but fizzled out rather quickly]. In fact articles began showing up that even Google in fact does not know what to do with Deepmind, as their results are apparently not as practical as originally expected... As for the prominent researchers, they've been generally touring around meeting with government officials in Canada or France to secure their future grants, Yann Lecun even stepped down (rather symbolically) from the Head of Research to Chief AI scientist at Facebook. This gradual shift from rich, big corporations to government sponsored institutes suggests to me that the interest in this kind of research within these corporations (I think of Google and Facebook) is actually slowly winding down. Again these are all early signs, nothing spoken out loud, just the body language.
Deep learning (does not) scaleOne of the key slogans repeated about deep learning is that it scales almost effortlessly. We had the AlexNet in 2012 which had ~60M parameters, we probably now have models with at least 1000x that number right? Well probably we do, the question however is - are these things 1000x as capable? Or even 100x as capable? A study by openAI comes in handy:
So in terms of applications for vision we see that VGG and Resnets saturated somewhat around one order of magnitude of compute resources applied (in terms of number of parameters it is actually less). Xception is a variation of google inception architecture and actually only slightly outperforms inception on ImageNet, arguably actually slightly outperforms everyone else, because essentially AlexNet solved ImageNet. So at 100 times more compute than AlexNet we pretty much saturated architectures in terms of vision, or image classification to be precise. Neural machine translation is a big effort by all the big web search players and no wonder it takes all the compute it can take (and yet google translate still sucks, though has gotten arguably better). The latest three points on that graph, interestingly show reinforcement learning related projects, applied to games by Deepmind and OpenAI. Particularly AlphaGo Zero and slightly more general AlphaZero take ridiculous amount of compute, but are not applicable in the real world applications because much of that compute is needed to simulate and generate the data these data hungry models need. OK, so we can now train AlexNet in minutes rather than days, but can we train a 1000x bigger AlexNet in days and get qualitatively better results? Apparently not...
So in fact, this graph which was meant to show how well deep learning scales, indicates the exact opposite. We can't just scale up AlexNet and get respectively better results - we have to fiddle with specific architectures, and effectively additional compute does not buy much without order of magnitude more data samples, which are in practice only available in simulated game environments.
Self driving crashesBy far the biggest blow into deep learning fame is the domain of self driving vehicles (something I anticipated for a long time, see e.g. this post from 2016). Initially it was thought that end-to-end deep learning could somehow solve this problem, a premise particularly heavily promoted by Nvidia. I don't think there is a single person on Earth who still believes that, though I could be wrong. Looking at last year California DMV disengagement reports Nvidia car could not drive literally ten miles without a disengagement. In a separate post I discuss the general state of that development and comparison to human driver safety, which (spoiler alert) is not looking good. Since 2016 there were also several Tesla AutoPilot incidents [1, 2, 3] a few of which were fatal [1, 2]. Arguably Tesla Autopilot should not be confused with self driving (it is), but at least at the core it relies on the same kind of technology. As of today, aside from occasional spectacular errors [1], it still cannot stop at an intersection, recognize a traffic light, or even navigate through a roundabout. That is in May 2018, several months after the promised coast to coast Tesla autonomous drive (did not happen although the rumor is they've tried but could not get it to work without ~30 disengagements). Several months ago (in February 2018) Elon Musk repeated in a conference call when asked about the coast to coast drive that:
"We could have done the coast-to-coast drive, but it would have required too much specialized code to effectively game it or make it somewhat brittle and that it would work for one particular route, but not the general solution. So I think we would be able to repeat it, but if it's just not any other route, which is not really a true solution. ('...)
I am pretty excited about how much progress we're making on the neural net front. And it's a little '' it's also one of those things that's kind of exponential where the progress doesn't seem '' it doesn't seem like much progress, it doesn't seem like much progress, and suddenly wow. It will feel like well this is a lame driver, lame driver. Like okay, that's a pretty good driver. Like 'Holy Cow!' this driver's good. It'll be like that,''
Well, looking at the graph above (from OpenAI) I seem not be seeing that exponential progress. Neither is it visible in miles before disengagement for pretty much every big player in this field. In essence the above statement should be interpreted: "We currently don't have the technology that could safely drive us coast to coast, though we could have faked it if we really wanted to (maybe...). We deeply hope that some sort of exponential jump in capabilities of neural networks will soon happen and save us from disgrace and massive lawsuits".
But by far the biggest pin punching through the AI bubble was the accident in which Uber self driving car killed a pedestrian in Arizona. From the preliminary report by the NTSB we can read some astonishing statements:
Aside from general system design failure apparent in this report, it is striking that the system spent long seconds trying to decide what exactly is sees in front (whether that be a pedestrian, bike, vehicle or whatever else) rather than making the only logical decision in these circumstances, which was to make sure not to hit it. There are several reasons for it: first, people will often verbalize their decisions post factum. So a human will typically say: "I saw a cyclist therefore I veered to the left to avoid him". Huge amount of psychophysical literature will suggest a quite different explanation: a human saw something which was very quickly interpreted as a obstacle by fast perceptual loops of his nervous systems and he performed a rapid action to avoid it, long seconds later realizing what happened and providing a verbal explanation". There are tons of decisions we make every day that are not verbalized, and driving includes many of them. Verbalization is costly and takes time and reality often does not provide that time. These mechanisms have evolved for a billion years to keep us safe, and driving context (although modern) makes use of many such reflexes. And since these reflexes have not evolved specifically for driving, they may induce mistakes. A knee jerk reaction to a wasp buzzing in a car may have caused many crashes and deaths. But our general understanding of 3d space, speed, ability to predict the behavior of agents, behavior of physical objects traversing through our path are the primitive skills, that were just as useful 100 million years ago as they are today and they've been honed really sharp by evolution.
But because most of these things are not easily verbalizable, they are hard to measure, and consequently we don't optimize our machine learning systems on these aspects at all [see my earlier post for benchmark proposals that would address some of these capabilities]. Now this would speak in favor of Nvidia end-to-end approach - learn image->action mapping, skipping any verbalization, and in some ways this is the right way to do it but... the problem is that the input space is incredibly high dimensional, while the action space is very low dimensional. Hence the "amount" of "label" (readout) is extremely small compared to the amount of information coming in. In such situation it is easy to learn spurious relations, as exemplified by adversarial examples in deep learning. A different paradigm is needed and I postulate prediction of the entire perceptual input along with the action as a first step to make a system able to extract the semantics of the world, rather than spurious correlations [read more about my first proposed architecture called Predictive Vision Model].
In fact if there is anything at all we learned from the outburst of deep learning, is that (10k+ dimensional) image space has plenty enough spurious patterns in it, that they actually generalize across many images and make the impression like our classifiers actually understand what they are seeing. Nothing could be further from the truth, as admitted even by the top researchers who are heavily invested in this field. In fact many top researchers should not be too outraged by my observations, Yann Lecun warned about overexcitement and AI winter for a while, even Geoffrey Hinton - the father of the current outburst of backpropagation - admitted in an interview that this likely is all a dead end, and we need to start over. At this point though, the hype is so strong that nobody will listen, even to the founding fathers of the field.
Gary Marcus and his quest against the hypeI should mention that more top tier people are recognizing the hubris and have the courage to openly call it. One of the most active in that space is Gary Marcus. Although I don't think I agree with everything that Gary proposes in terms of AI, we certainly agree that it is not yet as powerful as painted by the deep learning hype-propaganda. In fact it is not even any close. For those who missed it, he has excellent blog posts/papers "Deep learning: A critical appraisal" and "In defense of skepticism about deep learning", where he very meticulously deconstructs the deep learning hype. I respect Gary a lot, he behaves like a real scientist should, while most so called "deep learning stars" just behave like cheap celebrities.
ConclusionPredicting the A.I. winter is like predicting a stock market crash - impossible to tell precisely when it happens, but almost certain that it will at some point. Much like before a stock market crash there are signs of the impending collapse, but the narrative is so strong that it is very easy to ignore them, even if they are in plain sight. In my opinion there are such signs visible already of a huge decline in deep learning (and probably in AI in general as this term has been abused ad nauseam by corporate propaganda), visible in plain sight, yet hidden from the majority by the increasingly intense narrative. How "deep" will that winter be? I have no idea. What will come next? I have no idea. But I'm pretty positive it is coming, perhaps sooner rather than later.
Comments comments
Juncker: Italians need to work harder and be less corrupt | World news | The Guardian
Fri, 01 Jun 2018 13:45
Jean-Claude Juncker has said Italians need to work harder, be less corrupt and stop looking to the EU to rescue the country's poor regions, in comments unlikely to ease the fraught political battle over Italy's future relationship with Brussels.
Days after the Italian president, Sergio Mattarella, defended Italy's place in the eurozone against the country's populist leaders, the president of the European commission said he was in ''deep love'' with ''bella Italia'', but could not accept that all the country's problems should be blamed on the EU or the commission.
''Italians have to take care of the poor regions of Italy. That means more work; less corruption; seriousness,'' Juncker said. ''We will help them as we always did. But don't play this game of loading with responsibility the EU. A country is a country, a nation is a nation. Countries first, Europe second.''
Officials in Brussels and markets around the world are awaiting the outcome of ongoing talks between Italy's two populist leaders, Luigi Di Maio of the Five Star Movement (M5S) and Matteo Salvini of the far-right League, on forming a new government.
After making the remarks during a question and answer session in Brussels, Juncker added it would be best to be ''silent and prudent and cautious'' this week, whenever he was asked about Italy. ''I have full confidence in the genius of the Italian people,'' he said.
Talks between Di Maio and Salvini have revived hopes that Italy might stave off a snap election, a prospect that shook Italian markets this week because of fears that a new poll might bolster populist and anti-euro forces in the country.
Juncker's comments are likely to be met with scorn among some in Italy, as officials including Mattarella have sought to allay growing feelings of animosity towards Brussels and doubts about the benefits of inclusion in the eurozone.
Mattarella vetoed a proposal to appoint a vehemently anti-euro economist, Paolo Savona, to serve as finance minister. The move was deeply controversial and was initially met with calls for his impeachment, but Mattarella sought to justify his decision with a rousing defence of Italy's role in the eurozone, and spoke of the importance of sending the right signals to the markets.
His move was praised by European leaders, and it prompted Donald Tusk, president of the European council, to admonish a German budget commissioner who had suggested that a collapse in the markets might teach Italians not to vote for populists. ''We are there to serve them, not to lecture them,'' Tusk said in response to G¼nther Oettinger's remarks.
Italian press reports have indicated that any agreement to form a new government involving the League, formerly known as the Northern League, and M5S would include the nomination '' again '' of Giuseppe Conte, a formerly obscure law professor, to serve as prime minister.
But Di Maio and Salvini are expected to back down on their earlier insistence that Savona should serve as finance minister.
There were also small indications that the populists would try to assure the markets they were not planning any big moves to hasten an Italian exit from the euro.
In Milan, a roadside sign outside the headquarters of the League that had previously declared ''Basta Euro!'' '' a call to leave the currency '' was painted over overnight.
Mattarella, who would have to formally approve the new government's leader and slate of ministers, signalled on Wednesday evening that he was ready to install a technocratic government if a deal could not be reached, but decided to give Di Maio and Salvini more time to draw up a list of ministers that could be accepted by all parties.
The decision to ''slow things down'' '' taken three months after an election that resulted in a hung parliament '' was an attempt to try to head off a snap election, which would have to be held if the political impasse lasts much longer.
A bitter row between Mattarella and the two populists at the weekend had prompted the latter to step back '' at least temporarily '' from their plan to assume power.
On Sunday night, Mattarella refused to endorse the nomination of Savona for the finance brief, setting off a chain of events that caused turmoil on Italian markets: Conte resigned as prime minister-in-waiting and new elections appeared to be imminent, worrying markets and officials in Brussels. Their concern was that new elections could strengthen populist gains in Italy, leading to even greater uncertainty about the country's future in the eurozone.
Those fears were slightly allayed on Wednesday after Di Maio opened the door to new talks with Salvini, and suggested he was open to reaching a compromise that could satisfy Mattarella's objections.
FEEDBACK: Tommy Robinson under the cosh, and bankers above the Law '' The Slog.
Fri, 01 Jun 2018 12:43
One of the best bits of running a blogsite is the ability to read live responses, and learn from the comment threads that follow one's posts'....and also the emails sent direct to the author. The downside of nutters and occasionally seriously deranged people can be a trial, but usually I find value is added to a piece whether threaders agree with me or not. So just for a change, I thought it might be nice to include some recent stuff I've written in reply. [In each example, I have used a pr(C)cis to sum up what the threaders wrote, because I want to protect their anonymity.]
The Tommy Robinson case
There are few more highly-charged issues at the moment than the arrest and imprisonment of the man who has given himself the pseudonym 'Tommy Robinson'. He is without question a showboating attention-seeker with a troubled life history. He's certainly not my cup of tea, and it has emerged since his arrest that Robinson was in clear contempt of a previous Court Order: thus his imprisonment was ''legal'' in the very narrowest sense of the term.
A lot of law, however, is about intent: of the defendant, and also of the police, State and judiciary trying him. My view remains as follows:
TR is an exhibitionist, but in a cause he believes to be just. As it happens, so do I. I think if there were more ''exhibitionists'' in the Waspi organisation, for example, they would be a lot further down the road to justice than they are.The intent of the police in this case was, it seems clear to me, to make an example of Robinson. I understand from reliable sources that they knew in advance what he was going to do, an intent they could have foiled by asking him on arrival '' given the nature of the case '' to show restraint in the interests of a genuinely fair trial'....and further trials to come.The British State was also very happy to be given an opportunity to virtue-signal against ''racism'', but in the case of TR I have yet to see a single positive piece of evidence to suggest he is a racist. His beef is with a religion which not only has precepts most British people would regard as abhorrent, it is alos actively engaged (and has been for some time) in shouting about its population weight while showing serial contempt for democracy and liberal values relating to the expression of an opinion.The arrest and imprisonment of ''Tommy'' does not compare in any 'fair' sense with the consistent leniency shown to Britain's Islamic population '' where, for example, the most ludicrous defences '' ''He did not realise that raping children was wrong in British culture'' and ''His English is limited'' '' have been accepted by Judges and resulted in very light sentences.After my second post on the subject, I was referred to The Secret Barrister's blog by a Slog reader, and found it on the one hand extremely informative, but on the other hand hugely (C)litist and Left-biased. So I posted to that effect.
A threader then appeared at my site to wonder why this was all I had against TSB, explaining (in that and a second thread) that I seemed unable to distinguish between points of law and socio-political opinion. His thread comment on the whole, however, was again enlightening and well-argued. This was my response:
'I understand perfectly well your desire to make the Law and personal opinion mutually exclusive; but they aren't and never have been. The term used when approaching lawyers (of which I have over forty years of corporate and private experience) is ''to seek a legal opinion''. The Law (its existence or wisdom or indeed perversion) is not fixed at all: it is almost always a matter of opinion. I have many times asked a counsel whether we would win or not in a given case, only to be told, ''Hard to tell old boy'...it all depends on the Judge on the day''.
The Law doesn't exist in a vacuum. Andy Coulson didn't get 17 weeks in jail for industrial scale phone hacking, nor did Rebekah Brooks get to choose her charges, because the Law is unchanging and sacrosanct. Coulson didn't get off his second trial for libel by a judge dismissing the jury on that basis. They escaped justice because of who they were and what they knew. Elm House, Monday Club paedophilia junkets et al led directly to grooming gangs because the Law turned a blind eye.
Your outlook I take to be systemic, which is your choice. My choice is to analyse socio-legal issues on the basis of social anthropology: I am more your Dahrendorf kind of ''people'' bloke than a Talcott Parsons ''little boxes'' chap.
Everything is connected. JW'
I think we must make a distinction between legal opinion and political bias. To me '' as with journalism '' political bias has no place in the Law. It leads inevitably to the Show Trial if allowed to flourish.
I'd like to hear what other readers think '' and obviously, this offer is fully open to the threader who felt I was wrong.
Central banking's real role in the World
I recently received an email referring to this video on the subject of ''how global banking really works''. The person felt that it might be a bit ''out there'' and down the rabbit-hole. Having viewed the interview (it dealt a lot with how the various central banks, the BIS and the IMF variously loot the wealth of nations) I responded as follows:
' I wish it did sound ''out there'', but it isn't at all. We still lack a sensible explanation for why Brown sold our Gold on BoE advice at its lowest point in history'....a move that has increased our vulnerability to geopolitical pressure. The system operates on the basis of its institutions sounding like government-owned concerns, but of course they aren't. The US 'Federal' Reserve has nothing whatever to do with the federal government, being owned and run by monetary economists and banks. The IMF is directly answerable to the BIS, although the oil-State Dept-Pentagon axis of the US has a dominant role in it. Hiring Lagarde was a sop to Basel. At the same time, the ECB under Trichet lent the fledgling ClubMed sums they could never repay, and from that stemmed total control of Greece as a vassal State.
Draghi, it goes without saying, is a senior member of the Club. One interesting aspect for me over the years, however, has been the almost total lack of Jews in the operation. Neither Washington nor Basel wanted DSK, as a left-wing Jewish reformer, to get the IMF job, so they took him out'....a joint operation between the French & American security services, and one in which Fed Treasury chairman Tim Geithner was heavily involved. Jewish influence in the banking system is obviously enormous, but when you dig down into it they have almost nothing to do with senior globalised central banking
Jewish wealth is overwhelmingly in real estate, infrastructure, a dozen or so private wealth (family) fronts and of course Israel. They have little or nothing to do with oil, arms, multinational marketing or hitech. But they do wield immense power via their genius for auditing, legalese, accountancy and banking product development. The most powerful banking firm in that sector is Goldman Sachs.
As I've tried to point out on the blog, there is no one 'deep state NWO Elders of Zion' secret society running the show. In reality, there are several Alt States. The current list consists of fractional reserve banking, energy (oil), the media on & offline, the militaries, Islam, the Church of Rome, multinational business, the CIA, MI5 & 6 and coming up fast, the cybernetics of hacking and weaponry.
Much of the time, these self-styled (C)lites have shared interests and rub along together perfectly well. Sometimes they are in direct opposition. I don't think Trump is part of this '' if anything he's caught up in it. He hates the oil business, for example, and distrusts Wall Street. He's more your sort of brainless pussy-grabbing alpha male with a heavy streak of schmalz and nostalgia.
There are people there who've been thrust upon him like Dimon and McMasters: he talks glowingly in public about them, but he's been trying to fire McMadman for ten months. The CIA/State club (whom Trump helped to stuff the FBI) seems now to be in the ascendancy '' witness the Pompeo and Bolton appointments '' but they too are tied to Texan oil. So every step he takes has the potential for blowing his legs off. Even in the White House, we see various Alt States squabbling and jostling for power. The Republican Party, in stark contrast, is absolutely nowhere.'
Most of this response is based on hard factual information and recorded events. Some of it is informed conjecture. Again, I'd like to know what others think.
Last night at The Slog: Oxymoronic geopolitics
Hoe de Spaanse premier Rajoy ten onder ging aan corruptie in zijn partij | De Volkskrant
Fri, 01 Jun 2018 12:08
Het was ook Snchez' PSOE die gisteren de motie van wantrouwen had ingediend. Hij zocht daarvoor steun bij een bont gezelschap van regionale partijen. Zij steunden hem in ruil voor de belofte Rajoys begroting over te nemen.
Corruptie De val van Rajoy werd vorige week ingeluid met het vonnis van de rechtbank in de zaak-G¼rtel. Dat is een van de omvangrijkste corruptieschandalen uit de Spaanse geschiedenis, waarin Rajoys Volkspartij (Partido Popular, PP) een grote rol speelt. Het was niet de eerste keer dat de Volkspartij in verband werd gebracht met corruptie. Iedere keer weer wist Rajoy de dans te ontspringen, maar deze keer kwamen de veroordelingen wel erg dichtbij: een gewezen penningmeester van zijn partij verdween voor 33 jaar in de gevangenis vanwege de steekpenningen die hij ontving.
Rajoy hield donderdag vol dat 'in de PP corruptie is voorgekomen, maar dat de PP geen corrupte partij is'. Strikt genomen heeft hij gelijk. Geen van zijn kabinetsleden maakte deel uit van het G¼rtel-complot. Van de andere kant moest Rajoy in deze zaak zelf als getuige voor de rechter verschijnen, een nogal beschamend tafereel voor een zittende premier. Rajoy ontkende bij die gelegenheid het bestaan van een schaduwkas en het feit dat hij daaruit zou zijn betaald. Die verklaring werd vorige week door de rechter echter afgedaan als niet 'voldoende geloofwaardig'.
OnhandigHet vonnis was een nieuwe kras voor een premier die nooit erg geliefd is geweest in Spanje. In de zes jaar dat Rajoy premier is dreven de Spanjaarden graag de spot met de Galicir: om zijn gebrekkige talenkennis, en om zijn onhandigheid. Daar kwam bij dat Rajoy tijdens de financile crisis een straf bezuinigingsbeleid voerde.
Tot veler verbazing wist Rajoy na zijn eerste kabinetsperiode opnieuw de verkiezingen te winnen. Twee verkiezingen had hij nodig om een partner te vinden die zijn regering wilde gedogen. Tijdens de huidige termijn, die in het teken stond van de Catalaanse kwestie, verloor Rajoy ten slotte ook de sympathie van veel rechtse kiezers: ze vinden zijn optreden te weifelend, en steken volgens de opiniepeilingen over naar de nieuwe partij Burgers (C's).
Pedro Snchez zon al die tijd op een kans om Rajoy uit zijn ambt te zetten. De sociaal-democratische voorman weigerde de regering van Rajoy in 2016 te gedogen, maar werd toen door zijn eigen partij gepasseerd. Snchez trad af en vocht zich terug via een leiderschapsverkiezing. Het corruptieschandaal stelde hem in staat zijn grote vijand in politiek opzicht om te leggen.
'Treed af, mijnheer Rajoy, uw tijd is op', riep Snchez de premier op. Voor de sociaal-democraten is 'G¼rtel de PP, en de PP is G¼rtel'. Snchez voegde eraan toe dat Rajoy 'in iedere andere democratie allang zijn verantwoordelijkheid had genomen'.
De premier in spe verwees naar het tijdperk-Rajoy als naar 'een tijd waarin we de broekriem moesten aanhalen totdat we stikten'. Hij wil zelf socialer beleid gaan voeren. Vervolgens is het Snchez' bedoeling nieuwe verkiezingen uit te schrijven. De verkiezingsdatum hield hij vaag.
Steun leek een uitgemaakte zaakHet leek een uitgemaakte zaak dat Snchez steun zou krijgen voor zijn motie van wantrouwen. Rajoy regeerde in minderheid, en ook de twee andere grote oppositiepartijen '' Podemos en C's '' wilden van hem af. Maar zo simpel ligt dat in de Spaanse politiek niet: hier blijkt het altijd weer gemakkelijker ergens tegen te zijn dan gezamenlijk ergens v""r.
De liberale partij Burgers (Ciudadanos, C's) weigerde Snchez te steunen. Partijleider Albert Rivera heeft liever zo snel mogelijk verkiezingen. Zijn partij maakt volgens de peilingen kans de grootste te worden. Om Snchez te overtuigen van zijn plannen, kwam Rivera met een aantal namen voor sociaal-democratische interimmers op de proppen, zoals Javier Solana (voormalig secretaris-generaal van de NAVO). De meesten van hen bedankten echter fluks voor de eer.
Het leidde ertoe dat Snchez afhankelijk werd van wat Rajoy aanduidt als 'een monster van Frankenstein': een veelkoppig wezen, bestaand uit allerlei regionale partijen.
DialoogDe Catalaans-nationalistische partijen zagen Rajoy graag vertrekken, maar ze wilden voor hun steun iets terug van Snchez. Die beloofde hen donderdag 'dialoog'. De Catalanen lieten geen misverstanden bestaan over wat ze daaronder verstaan: geen gekozen politici in de gevangenis.
Moeilijker was het voor Snchez om de Baskisch-nationalisten over te halen. Rajoy, in dit verband betiteld als 'oude kat' (vrij vertaald: sluwe vos), probeerde de Basken in aanloop naar het debat onder druk te zetten. De net aangenomen begroting voor 2018 zou alsnog worden teruggetrokken. Dat betekent dat de Basken 540 miljoen euro zouden mislopen, vooral bedoeld voor spoorwegen en andere infrastructuur. Snchez beloofde donderdag dat hij de begroting voor dit jaar intact zal houden.
In een laatste poging het lijf te redden, ging Rajoy er donderdag toe over angstige toekomstvisioenen te schetsen. De stabiliteit van Spanje zou in gevaar komen als hij moest aftreden, zei hij. Het is een scenario dat veel Spanjaarden daadwerkelijk de stuipen op het lijf jaagt: de geschiedenis van het land is getekend door lange periodes van politieke instabiliteit, waarbij het land in de praktijk onbestuurbaar was.
De financile markten voedden die ongerustheid. Vanaf het moment dat Snchez zijn motie aankondigde, steeg de rente op tienjarige staatsleningen. Ze blijven echter nog ver onder het niveau van Itali. Er is geen reden om aan te nemen dat Spanje zich onder een nieuwe regering zal onttrekken aan de Europese begrotingsdiscipline.
Rajoy besloot tijdens de middagpauze schielijk te vertrekken uit het parlement. Even later kondigde de ene na de andere partij aan de motie van wantrouwen te steunen, en daarmee werd zijn politieke doodvonnis getekend. Het is de eerste keer in de democratische geschiedenis van Spanje dat een premier op deze manier wordt weggestuurd.
Tweede Kamer klaar voor confrontatie met Rusland over aansprakelijkheid MH17 | De Volkskrant
Fri, 01 Jun 2018 12:07
Minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus van Justitie en Veiligheid (CDA), Minister Stef Blok van Buitenlandse Zaken (VVD) en Thierry Baudet (FvD) tijdens het Tweede Kamerdebat over het kabinetsbesluit om Rusland aansprakelijk te stellen voor de MH17-ramp. Foto ANPDe opluchting is donderdagmiddag van Stef Bloks gezicht af te lezen. De anders zo koele VVD-minister voor Buitenlandse Zaken is blij met de 'Kamerbrede steun' die hij krijgt om Rusland mede aansprakelijk te stellen voor het neerhalen van vlucht MH17. Zelfs de kritische Tweede Kamerleden van Forum voor Democratie, de PVV en de SP hebben zojuist '' na enkele dagen aarzelen - hun steun uitgesproken voor een confrontatie met Rusland over de aanslag op het passagierstoestel waarbij vier jaar geleden 298 mensen omkwamen.
'Iedere stap die wij zetten is gericht op het einddoel: daders berechten en genoegdoening van de nabestaanden', zegt Blok voldaan. Het was zijn partijgenoot Han ten Broeke die even daarvoor had aangedrongen op een eensgezind geluid vanuit de Tweede Kamer zodat het kabinet zich gesterkt voelt in zijn strijd met Moskou om de waarheid boven te krijgen. 'Jarenlang heeft Rusland doelbewust de zoektocht naar de waarheid vertroebeld door het verspreiden van fake news. Jarenlang is een wig gedreven tussen partijen, ook in deze Kamer', aldus Ten Broeke. 'Het is tijd om de strijdbijl te begraven. Tijd om gezamenlijk steun te geven aan alle nabestaanden.'
EensgezindheidDe oproep van de VVD-buitenlandwoordvoerder vindt in eerste instantie weerklank. Niet alleen de coalitiepartijen en GroenLinks, PvdA, Partij voor de Dieren en SGP scharen zich achter het kabinet. Ook de grootste criticasters in het parlement spreken zich voor het eerst eensgezind uit over de aansprakelijkheid van Rusland. Vooral naar het optreden van Forum voor Democratie-leider Thierry Baudet wordt uitgekeken.
Lang wilde Baudet als enige Kamerlid er niet aan dat Rusland een rol speelde in de MH17-ramp. Zelfs toen het internationale onderzoeksteam JIT vorige week vaststelde dat de MH17 is neergehaald met een Buk-raket van de 53e luchtafweerbrigade uit Koersk, hield Baudet voet bij stuk. 'Er is veel dat ik niet kan beoordelen', reageerde hij toen nog afhoudend op vragen van journalisten. 'Dat vind ik echt aan een rechter. Ik wil geen voorschot nemen op de uitkomst.'
Minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus van Justitie en Veiligheid (CDA) en Minister Stef Blok van Buitenlandse Zaken (VVD) tijdens het Tweede Kamerdebat. Foto ANPDonderdag bekent Baudet alsnog kleur. 'Het aansprakelijk stellen van Rusland is een terechte en logische stap', zegt hij. Zijn brief aan de Amerikaanse president Donald Trump uit 2016, waarin hij opriep tot nieuw onderzoek naar de toedracht van de ramp, zou hij nu niet meer versturen. 'Als ik kijk naar onderzoeksresultaten van het JIT vorige week, dan komen die op mij grondig en plausibel over.'
IrritatieDe irritatie op Bloks gezicht komt weer terug als Baudet vervolgens toch nog een slagje om de arm houdt. 'Betekent dit dat ik zeker weet wat er gebeurd is? Nee', zegt Baudet. Hij wil niet meegaan in de woordkeus van het kabinet dat het JIT 'onomstotelijk bewijs' heeft geleverd voor de betrokkenheid van Rusland. Baudet: 'Dat is aan een rechter. Ik vind het staatsrechtelijk niet juist als de politiek dat oordeel velt.' Liever wil hij dat het kabinet zegt dat het 'serieuze en gegronde reden heeft' om aan te nemen dat er bewijs is tegen Rusland.
En zo eindigt het eensgezinde debat over het aanspreken van Rusland toch nog in een robbertje vechten over de woordkeus. Minister Blok constateert 'een zeer groot contrast' tussen wat Baudet zegt over aansprakelijkheid van Rusland enerzijds en anderzijds zijn weigering om het bewijs daarvoor te omarmen. VVD'er Ten Broeke weigert zijn motie over Rusland af te zwakken om Baudet tegemoet te komen. De motie wordt zonder steun van het Forum aangenomen door de Kamer.
Italiaanse populisten doen water bij de wijn | Buitenland | Telegraaf.nl
Fri, 01 Jun 2018 11:59
Extra Het beste van De Telegraaf
Door Maarten van Aalderen
Vandaag, 05:30 in BUITENLAND
ROME - Europa kan zijn borst natmaken, nu er alsnog een radicaal geelgroen Italiaans kabinet aankomt, vol scepsis over de euro en de EU. De Vijf Sterrenbeweging en de Lega hebben gisteren een akkoord gesloten om tot een nieuwe Italiaanse regering te komen, die vandaag zal worden bedigd. Professor Giuseppe Conte kreeg gisteravond opnieuw van president Mattarella de opdracht om een regering te vormen, dit keer zonder de omstreden Paolo Savona als kandidaat voor Economische zaken.
De radicale econoom Savona bleek niet te verteren voor de Italiaanse president en moet nu genoegen nemen met een minder invloedrijke post.
Dagelijks tijdens de lunch het laatste nieuws in je inbox?Ongeldig e-mailadres. Vul nogmaals in aub.
Uitschrijven kan met 1 klik
CNN Stands By Its Reporting On Freeman | The Daily Caller
Fri, 01 Jun 2018 11:57
CANNES, FRANCE - MAY 21: Morgan Freeman and his family attend the Closing Ceremony and premiere of 'Chromophobia' at the Palais during the 58th Cannes Film Festival May 21, 2005 in Cannes, France (SHUTTERSTOCK: By Denis Makarenko) 3:20 PM 05/29/2018
CNN is sticking by its reporting in the wake of a letter to the network from Morgan Freeman after he said an article citing several women accusing him of sexual misconduct is false.
A CNN spokesperson said the accusations from Freeman's lawyer were ''disappointing'' in a statement provided to The Daily Caller News Foundation.
''The unfounded accusations made by Mr. Freeman's lawyer are disappointing and are difficult to reconcile with Mr. Freeman's own public statements in the aftermath of the story. CNN stands by its reporting and will respond forcefully to any attempt by Mr. Freeman or his representatives to intimidate us from covering this important public issue,'' the statement reads in full.
Since the CNN story broke '-- with eight women accusing the A-list actor of sexual impropriety '-- Freeman has apologized but also had his lawyer fire back at the reporting. (RELATED: Morgan Freeman Accused Of Sexual Misconduct By Multiple Women. Here's What We Know)
''At a minimum, CNN immediately needs to issue a retraction and apologize to Mr. Freeman through the same channels, and with the same level of attention, that it used to unjustly attack him on May 24,'' the letter read.
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Generation Z is moving away from Facebook '-- here's what's next
Fri, 01 Jun 2018 04:11
Rachel Premack May 29, 2018, 7:53 AM ET Strelka Institute for Media, Architecture and Design/Flickr/Attribution Preppy brands and cable TV are out. We already know Facebook is losing among Generation Z, the generation after millennials that prefers Snapchat and Instagram.Marketing and retail experts pinpointed six other sectors and businesses that are likely to struggle once these teens come of age."Generally, members of Generation Z are tech-savvy, pragmatic, open-minded, individualistic - but also socially responsible," An Hodgson, an income and expenditure manager at Euromonitor International, told Business Insider. Ishan Goel, a 19-year-old marketing strategist with the Mark Cuban Companies, said it was "not cool" for his fellow Gen Zers to be on Facebook. For today's teens, Facebook is just a tool for group chats or keeping up with parents.
"People aren't wanting to post stuff consistently," Goel told Business Insider.
People in Generation Z were born between roughly 1995 and 2010. This cohort of current teens is on track to kill Facebook, Business Insider's Mark Abadi reported earlier this year.
Only 9% of teens say Facebook is their preferred social-media platform, a survey from Piper Jaffray found last year. Gen Z prefers Snapchat and Instagram, while older millennials are the biggest chunk of Facebook's users.
"Generally, members of Generation Z are tech-savvy, pragmatic, open-minded, individualistic - but also socially responsible," An Hodgson, an income and expenditure manager at Euromonitor International, told Business Insider.
Hodgson added: "Because Gen Zers are individualistic and value their privacy, they prefer anonymous social media like Snapchat, Secret, and Whisper rather than Facebook."
Millennials are said to have already killed bar soap, diamonds, and napkins. Here's what's on Gen Z's hit list.
Ralph Lauren, Sperry, and other preppy brands Richard Drew/AP Refined-classic brands, like Ralph Lauren and Vineyards Vines, are at record low popularity in the teen market, according to Piper Jaffray, moving to a 5% market share among teens from an average of 14%.
Ralph Lauren is taking one of the biggest hits, Piper Jaffray found. It was in the top 10 brands for men since 2002 but lost its standing this year. Filling the gap are streetwear brands like Adidas, Vans, and Supreme.
Department stores LM Otero/AP Bobby Calise, the director of business development at the youth-insights firm Ypulse, told Business Insider that JCPenney and Macy's had high brand awareness among Gen Zers but that they were more likely to shop at Forever 21, American Eagle, and other youth-centric fashion brands.
"The data is clear on one thing: Neither brand is cool in the eyes of Gen Z - and cool is a pretty important form of currency if you're in the business of selling clothes to teenagers," Calise said.
Goel said Gen Z perceived stores like JCPenney, Sears, and Kmart as lacking quality and a voice.
"When was the last time you bragged about shopping at JCPenney?" Goel said.
Gen Zers prefer to order online from companies with strong digital branding, said Tiffany Zhong, CEO of the youth-marketing firm Zebra Intelligence. And many know how to find manufacturers online, where they can buy products directly at a lower cost.
Cable TV Pete Souza/White House Photo via Getty Images "No one watches cable TV anymore," Goel said.
More than 60% of teens said they would rather watch 10 hours of videos on YouTube than 10 hours of television, a 2017 survey by AwesomenessTV found.
Gen Zers surveyed said online videos were best for learning or laughing, while they preferred cable TV for watching with family or keeping up with what's going on in the world.
Perhaps most revealing: One-third of surveyed teens felt that cable TV was best for falling asleep.
Anything related to paper Andrew Kelly/Reuters In case you live under a rock and didn't hear, print-media consumption is declining.
Gen Zers tend to prefer the convenience of opening their phones or e-readers to enjoy a book, Goel and Zhong said. This generation is not alone - 266 million e-books were sold last year, compared with nearly 70 million in 2010.
"I can pull out my online book at Starbucks, which beats Barnes & Noble," Goel said.
Unlike previous generations, Gen Zers aren't nostalgic about opening up a newspaper. Many tend to get their news from social media - mainly Twitter - instead, a study by Response Media found (via Adweek).
"We can find everything online," Zhong told Business Insider, "and for free."
Pandora Strelka Institute for Media, Architecture and Design/Flickr/Attribution Almost 10% of millennials say they pay for Pandora, compared with just 6% of Gen Zers, a study by the consulting firm Fluent found. Generation Z, more than any other generation, prefers subscribing to Apple Music, Spotify, and YouTube Red.
Traditional luxury goods Joe Raedle/Getty Images "Growing up during the global financial crisis, Gen Zers are realistic and mindful of financial issues and future career from a younger age," Hodgson told Business Insider.
Gen Zers are more likely to opt for trends they can show off on social media, but not necessarily ones that are the most expensive.
The fashion trends that AwesomenessTV highlighted in its report tended to be ones that pop on social media, like space buns, pins and T-shirts with political sentiments, and sparkly makeup.
As Business Insider's Mallory Schlossberg wrote in 2016, "Luxury items - the kind that you can 'wear forever' - do not serve as much of a purpose on social media."
Crocs Cate Gillon/Getty Images The infamous garden shoe isn't beloved by brand-wary Generation Z.
Among the 160-plus brands that youth-insights firm Ypulse monitors, Crocs do especially poorly for brand influence among Gen Z consumers.
"Gen Z isn't hearing from or talking about the Crocs brand, as compared to TOMS or Sperry," Ypulse's Calise told Buisness Insider. "The Crocs brand is just 16 years old, so it might be better served to think like the Gen Zer it is and start engaging with more young people."
Crocs are making a comeback in the fashion world. Balenciaga released an $850 Crocs with a four-inch platform in February.
But couture isn't likely to impress Generation Z. Having grown up in the Great Recession, Hodgson of Euromonitor said Gen Z is quite frugal.
Casual dining restaurants Scott Olson/Getty Images Generation Z sees food as a way to express themselves. And they don't think casual dining chains like Applebee's quite do that.
"Gen Z consumers are three times more likely to agree that Chick-fil-A 'expresses who you are' and 'supports the causes you care about' than they do with Applebee's," Calise told Business Insider.
Millennials killed casual dining, and Gen Z will be sure to finish it off. Olive Garden, IHOP, and Applebee's were all low-scorers in Ypulse's brand survey among Gen Z consumers.
These restaurants' cachets have been faltering in recent years as consumers shift from casual dining to fast casual.
Gen Z diners prefer over-the-top food trends, authentic, social media-driven advertising, and spontaneity. Such attributes aren't necessarily tied with chain restaurants.
NOW WATCH: How airplanes fly those giant banner ads - it's more dangerous than you think
State Farm becomes second sponsor to drop Samantha Bee over Ivanka Trump slur | TheHill
Fri, 01 Jun 2018 01:12
State Farm insurance became the second company on Thursday to drop its sponsorship of comedian Samantha Bee's TBS show "Full Frontal" following her vulgar slur directed at first daughter Ivanka Trump.
"We have asked TBS to suspend our advertising in the program and are reviewing any future placements. We constantly review programs to ensure alignment to our programming guidelines and brand values," State Farm said in a statement reported by The Wrap.
The company's decision comes just hours after the online car shopping site Autotrader announced it had cut ties with the show after Bee called Trump a "feckless c---."
Bee apologized for the remark from the opening monologue of her show Wednesday, saying it was "inappropriate and inexcusable." But the comedian had continued to face backlash online from prominent media figures.
Other companies such as Discover credit cards held their sponsorship despite criticism from customers, noting on Twitter that "editorial discretion and content are created by the individual program" among its ad platforms.
The White House blasted Bee on Thursday following her insult directed at the president's eldest daughter, saying "Full Frontal" is "not fit for broadcast" after the derogatory remark.
TBS indicated Thursday that it would not punish Bee over the crude comment, saying Bee "has taken the right action in apologizing for the vile and appropriate language she used."
"Those words should not have been aired. It was our mistake too, and we regret it," TBS said.
The backlash came just days after ABC canceled its hit sitcom "Roseanne" amid outcry over a racist tweet its star Roseanne Barr sent taking aim at former Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett. Barr also apologized for the comment and deleted the tweet.
Facebook discrimination: Facebook, Amazon and hundreds of companies post targeted job ads that screen out older workers - Vox
Thu, 31 May 2018 13:41
Older workers are accusing Facebook, Ikea, and hundreds of other companies for discriminating against job seekers in their 50s and 60s through targeted job ads posted on Facebook.
The Communications Workers of America, a labor union representing 700,000 media workers across the country, added the companies to a class-action lawsuit on Tuesday, which was filed in California federal court in December. In its original complaint, the labor union accused Amazon, T-Mobile, and Cox Media Group of doing the same thing.
The case, Bradley v. T-Mobile, has major implications for US employers, who routinely buy job ads on Facebook to reach users. The plaintiffs argue that Amazon, T-Mobile, Ikea, Facebook, and hundreds of other companies target the ads so they are only seen by younger Facebook users.
The lawsuit revolves around Facebook's unique business model, which lets advertisers micro-target the network's users based on their interests, city, age, and other demographic information. In the past, equal rights advocates have sued Facebook for accepting ads that discriminate against consumers based on their religion, race, and gender.
Facebook has argued that the company is not legally responsible when other companies buy ads that violate the law. But in a new filing, the CWA has now added Facebook to its complaint as one of the companies accused of violating civil rights laws by targeting its own job ads to younger users.
Here is one ad Facebook posted, submitted by the plaintiffs, inviting users to a career fair with Facebook recruiters. The ads were visible only to users between the ages of 21 to 55:
Facebook ad submitted as evidence in Bradley v. T-Mobile.US District Court for the Northern District of California Facebook has denied that these kinds of ads are a form of age discrimination. Rob Goldman, Facebook's VP of ads, compared it to posting job ads in magazines geared for young audiences, which the courts have said isn't inherently a form of age discrimination as long as the company is also posting job ads in media outlets with older audiences or making other recruitment efforts.
''What matters is that marketing is broadly based and inclusive, not simply focused on a particular age group. In addition, certain employers want to attract retirees or recruit for jobs with specific age restrictions like the military or airline pilots,'' Goldman wrote in December in response to the original lawsuit and to the ProPublica and the New York Times's investigation that described the widespread practice.
Facebook came under fire in 2016 when a separate ProPublica investigation showed that companies could buy ads that screened out users based on their race, which is potentially illegal in the context of housing and employment advertising. Facebook announced in February 2017 that it had developed a new system to flag and reject certain ads that screened users based on ''ethnic affinity,'' but the network still lets advertisers filter out characteristics linked to other protected groups: women, people with disabilities, and religious minorities.
In the age discrimination case, plaintiffs want the court to order these companies, including Facebook itself, to stop posting job ads that filter out older workers. They argue that it's a violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, which makes it illegal to discriminate against workers over the age of 40 in employment advertising, recruiting, hiring, and other employment opportunities.
Here are a few other ads the plaintiffs submitted as evidence:
Amazon bought a job ad that filtered out Facebook users over the age of 54.US District Court for the Northern District of California The older workers are seeking an unspecified amount of damages for all of Facebook's users over the age of 40, and for an injunction that prohibits companies from targeting job ads that exclude that group.
Age discrimination has long been a neglected issue '-- but that may be changingJob discrimination against older workers is a big problem that is often overlooked in civil rights discussions. The number of age discrimination complaints submitted to US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has been steadily rising in the past 10 years, with about 18,000 complaints filed in fiscal year 2017 '-- about 20 percent of all complaints filed with the federal agency.
One 2017 study from economists at Tulane University and the University of California Irvine found that job applicants near retirement age, especially women, were far less likely to hear back from recruiters than younger workers. The study compared response rates to more than 40,000 fake r(C)sum(C)s sent in applications to 135 jobs.
One of the authors, Patrick Button, an economics professor at Tulane University, testified in front of EEOC commissioners in 2017, questioning how effective federal laws have been in protecting older workers.
''While age discrimination laws seem to help mitigate some age discrimination faced by older men, older women face more age discrimination, and current age discrimination laws do a poor job of protecting older women, who are even more economically vulnerable,'' he wrote.
How your cycling class could give you hearing loss - Vox
Thu, 31 May 2018 13:37
When Nisha* landed a job as a part-time spinning instructor at a major franchise, she was excited to earn some extra cash.
She grew to love the community at her studio and the camaraderie with her colleagues. But there was one aspect of her new job that took her by surprise: ''When I started training, I was shocked by how loud it was,'' she says. The operators of the indoor cycling studio told Nisha ''the louder the music is '-- the bigger the emotional impact in the room,'' she recalls.
So she started cranking up the volume on the music in the classes she teaches every week. Now a couple of years into teaching, she's not only grown accustomed to music at that level, she can't hear music at lower levels as well as she used to. ''I tend to max out my volume now both on the speakers and on my computer which I did not used to have to do,'' she told Vox. While she hasn't yet had her hearing checked by an audiologist, she says she's experienced some hearing loss from the noise at her job.
I spoke to five longtime exercise instructors '-- four who lead cycling classes and one who works at a gym '-- about their auditory health. Most of them did not want to reveal their identities because they feared they'd lose their jobs or because they signed agreements that they wouldn't speak with the media without permission. But they told a similar story: The noise levels they've been exposed to at work were loud enough to make them concerned about hearing loss.
''There were days when I could come out of the studio after teaching a triple, and my ears would be more sore than my muscles were,'' one of the cycling instructors told Vox.
Dennis,* an instructor at a major spinning franchise who's in his early 30s, became concerned about his hearing and went to an audiologist, who diagnosed him with early onset hearing loss. While the results of his hearing tests suggested genetics were mostly to blame, the audiologist said the five to 15 classes Dennis taught every week were certainly making things worse.
She also told Dennis to get custom earplugs, which cost several hundred dollars, to prevent further damage during his classes. When Dennis asked the management at his studio to cover the cost of the earplugs, they refused.
It's not just the instructors who are at risk: Indoor cycling and gym clientele are exposed to the same dangerous noise levels '-- including me. I take classes at a major indoor cycling studio, Flywheel, so I decided to test the sound levels over the last several months. I consistently found noise levels that hovered over 100 decibels. That's enough to violate the US Department of Labor standards for a safe noise environment, and to cause noise-induced hearing loss over the long term, which is why health authorities recommend no more than 15 minutes of exposure at that level.
When I told Flywheel about my findings, they said: ''Flywheel is aware of its obligations to both its customers and its employees concerning appropriate sound levels in its studios and ensures that appropriate protective hearing measures are made available.'' They declined to answer any further questions. SoulCycle also declined to comment for this story.
While noise levels can vary studio to studio, my readings squared with the findings from a 2016 study by otolaryngologists: In a random sampling of 17 classes at a variety of major spinning studios in the Boston area, the majority of class time registered over 100 decibels. The study authors did not specify which companies they included (for fear of any legal repercussions) but told Vox they covered six major US chains with locations throughout the US.
Public health authorities are increasingly worried about noise exposure everywhere: The World Health Organization calls environmental noise an ''underestimated threat'' and hearing loss (from all causes) is now the third most common chronic health condition in America, just after diabetes and cancer. One in four adults in America show signs of noise-induced hearing loss.
Yet many of us ignore the threat of noise '-- and are exposed to dangerous levels as we exercise and elsewhere in our lives '-- without protecting our ears. When I asked Nisha if she's complained about the noise at her studio and the damage she believes it has done, she told me she hadn't. Regulators and business owners also react with indifference.
This has to change. The case of loud cycling studios shows why.
A single 45-minute indoor cycling class was nine times the recommended noise exposure dose for an eight-hour workdaySince I started reporting a series on noise pollution, I received hundreds of emails about all the places people feel their hearing is assaulting on a daily basis: in restaurants, clothing and grocery stores, at the movies.
But many readers told me that exercise studios, and especially indoor cycling studios, are an increasingly common menace, perhaps because the the sector is booming and studios have popped up throughout the US.
Elliott Kozin, one of the authors on the Boston study of spinning studios and chief resident in the department of otolaryngology at Harvard Medical School, said he was inspired to analyze the noise in spinning studios after he met two family members for lunch one day and they complained to him that their ears were ringing.
''I asked what they did, and they said they went to [an indoor cycling class], so I asked them how loud it was. They said it was deafening.''
So Kozin and his co-authors dispatched researchers to a random sample of 17 cycling studios in the Boston area. The researchers had high-quality decibel meters and made sure they attended classes at different times of the day and sat in different spots during each class.
Shockingly, they found that the average noise exposure for a 45-minute class was nearly nine times the recommended noise exposure dose for an eight-hour workday. And while you can find studies dating back to the '90s, in which researchers point out the paradox that fitness classes are probably also deafening their patrons, these noise levels were even louder than what's been documented in previous studies, Kozin said.
The official government stance on safe noise levels comes from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, which sets the standard for noise at work. It recommends limits of 85 decibels '-- a bit more than the loudness of a freight train 100 feet away '-- for eight hours a day, and that people exposed to anything louder use hearing protection.
Indoor cyclers who attend a single 45-minute class vastly exceeded their recommended dose for noise for an entire day, according to the study. ''More importantly for the instructors, who may be doing two or three hour-long classes throughout the day,'' Kozin said, ''they are going to have considerable doses and be at risk for hearing loss.''
Federal health agencies are aware of the problem and planned to send out noise guidelines to exercise studios, but the project was haltedWhile Flywheel defended the loudness of its studios by saying it offers earplugs, most of the instructors I spoke to told me they didn't wear them because it makes teaching to the beat of the music very difficult. Flywheel's employee manual also says nothing about hearing damage. So they are currently working in environments that are probably deafening them '-- and, potentially, their students, too.
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, which regulates workplace noise at the Department of Labor, ''Workers have a right to a safe workplace'' and labor law ''prohibits employers from retaliating against employees for exercising their rights under the law (including the right to raise a health and safety concern or report an injury).'' OSHA handles workplace safety complaints on a case-by-case basis and depending on the circumstances, employers can face fines for violating standards.
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, is aware of the loud exercise class music problem. Its researchers were working with the authors of the study to come up with recommendations for how to prevent hearing loss that were to be sent to cycling and exercise studios '-- part of a ''workplace solutions series'' that offers public health guidance on safe workplaces. But in 2016, NIOSH decided to stop the project because of a reshuffling of research priorities.
''We expect to go to exercise classes to make ourselves healthier,'' Kozin said. ''What people don't quite think about is the fact that they might be hurting their health '-- hearing health '-- while they are exercising.''
He then used the secondhand smoke analogy. ''It's not that dissimilar to people who were bartending or being a waiter at a restaurant getting secondhand smoke '-- but instead, [these instructors are] having hearing damage.'' What makes it worse, he continued, is that fitness instructors may think they're working in a healthy environment.
How loud exercise classes can make us more vulnerable to noise-induced hearing loss It is difficult to pinpoint the exact cause of noise-induced hearing loss since the effects of loud sounds on the ears are cumulative and can take years to show up in hearing tests. But loud noise we're exposed to is thought to contribute to the wear and tear that degrades our hearing. The louder the noise, the worse the damage '-- but really loud sounds can damage our hearing in a short period of time.
We're born with about 16,000 little hair cells in our ears that act as sound detectors. When sound waves pass into our ears, the hair cells send a signal to the brain, and then our brain decodes the sound, whether it comes from a barking dog or a truck that's passing by. But ''the brain's interpretation is only as good as the signal it receives from the ear,'' said Ellen Pfeffer Lafargue, an audiologist with the Center for Hearing and Communication in New York. ''When the [hair cells in the] ear have been damaged, the sound that the brain gets is distorted or the ear can't detect sound.''
Lafargue uses the analogy of a grassy meadow to help her patients understand how noise degrades hearing. ''Imagine a field, walking through the grass. When you walk through one time and look back, you can't tell anybody walked on the grass.'' The blades recover and bounce up again. But ''if you've walked through it enough times, it becomes a permanent path.''
The same thing happens with the ears' hair cells. Like grass responding to a person's feet, the hair cells bend when they're exposed to loud sounds. They can bounce back during a recovery period '-- but when loud sounds have passed through the ears enough times, or at a high enough intensity, the hair cells get permanently destroyed. Along with them goes our ability to detect sound and send noise signals to the brain.
One symptom of noise-induced hearing loss is tinnitus, or ringing in your ears. The condition can be extremely bothersome '-- and while there are treatments, there's currently no cure. (You can listen to sample tinnitus sounds here.) (One Pittsburgh-based exercise instructor I spoke to, Dana Sabo, and one regular indoor cyclist, Jane Langille, both said they think loud exercise classes contributed to the chronic tinnitus they now suffer from.)
What's more, while being around loud sounds every day can certainly diminish your hearing over time, you don't need sustained exposure to experience permanent damage. A single pop of thundering noise '-- like a gunshot or an explosion greater than 120 decibels '-- is enough to do permanent damage. So exposure to sounds at that level takes even less time to diminish hearing.
That's why the World Health Organization and National Institutes of Health suggest people shouldn't be exposed to noise at or above 100 decibels '-- where many exercise studios seem to operate at '-- for any more than 15 minutes. For noise at or above 110 decibels, these health authorities recommend no more than one minute.
Even more worrisome, Aaron Remenschneider, Kozin's co-author on the study and a researcher at Massachusetts Eye and Ear, said researchers are finding intense exercise can actually reduce the threshold at which noise can cause permanent damage. ''While many people feel loud sounds and loud music may be motivational, we found there's good data to suggest it can make people feel more apprehensive and reduce the threshold that patients ultimately have for their hearing loss.''
When I asked Remenschneider what he thinks studios should do, given the findings of his study, he said, ''It's fairly simple from our perspective: We'd just like for them to turn the volume down. That's not a complicated algorithm for reducing the incidence of hearing loss in patients and instructors.''
How to protect your hearingTo protect your hearing, you need to understand how loud the environments you frequent really are. And to do that, there are now decibel readers you can download to your phone for free that let you measure the loudness around you.
Remember: Sound is made by waves of air pressure, and decibels are the unit by which sound intensity is measured. They fall on a logarithmic, or nonlinear, scale, meaning the marks on the scale are based on orders of magnitude. Every six decibels is perceived by the ears as about a doubling of loudness. So 96 decibels feels a whole lot louder than 90. Once you hit 70 or 80 decibels, you may be exposing yourself to noise-induced hearing loss.
If you work at an exercise studio, you should speak to your management about the federal guidelines or file a complaint with OSHA. (To reach your regional or area OSHA office, go to the OSHA Offices by State webpage or call 1-800-321-6742.)
Or simply consider turning the volume down. A DC-based instructor, Dru Ryan, said he has noticed riders stick their fingers in their ears when he plays loud music, so he takes that as a cue that he needs to play the music a little quieter.
Students who frequent loud exercise studios should consider reporting the noise to the managers and making sure to wear earplugs, since they can attenuate noise up to 30 decibels. (Wirecutter recommends Mack's Slim Fit Soft Foam Earplugs for their fit and ability to cut out noise, and the CDC has some advice about how to best insert them.) If your ears feel dull or they are ringing after the class, the plugs may not be strong enough and you may be damaging your hearing.
One of the audiologists I spoke to for this story, Leisa Lyles-DeLeon, told me she has at least one patient a week coming into her studio with noise-induced hearing loss who brings up exercise studios as a potential culprit. Which is why, at the Zumba classes she attends, she always wears earplugs and brings a pocket full of them, hoping that other students will ask her for a pair.
''The safest thing to do is to wear hearing protection and not depend on the studio to make the level it is for what they need to,'' she said. But is also time for studios to acknowledge that they are contributing to the epidemic of hearing loss '-- and to do something about it.
Check the noise levels at your favorite exercise studio and submit them to us! Download a decibel-reading app like the NIOSH Sound Level Meter, SoundPrint, Decibel X Pro and take a take a screen grab of the decibel reading in your exercise class. Submit them to us via email at julia.belluz@vox.com or tweet them using the hashtag #voxnoisepollution
How spies can use your cellphone to find you '-- and eavesdrop on your calls and texts, too - News - Stripes
Thu, 31 May 2018 13:35
Surveillance systems that track the locations of cellphone users and spy on their calls, texts and data streams are being turned against Americans as they roam the country and the world, say security experts and U.S. officials.
Federal officials acknowledged the privacy risk to Americans in a previously undisclosed letter from the Department of Homeland Security to Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., last week, saying they had received reports that "nefarious actors may have exploited" global cellular networks "to target the communications of American citizens."
The letter, dated May 22 and obtained by The Washington Post, described surveillance systems that tap into a global messaging system that allows cellular customers to move from network to network as they travel. The decades-old messaging system, called SS7, has little security, allowing intelligence agencies and some criminal gangs to spy on unwitting targets '-- based on nothing more than their cellphone numbers.
"I don't think most Americans realize how insecure U.S. telephone networks are," Wyden said in a statement. "If more consumers knew how easy it is for bad guys to track or hack their mobile phones, they would demand the FCC and wireless companies do something about it. These aren't just hypotheticals."
Wyden also revealed in a separate letter Tuesday that a major American cellular carrier has referred an "SS7 breach" involving customer data to federal law enforcement officials for investigation. He chastised the Federal Communications Commission in the letter, saying it had "failed to address this ongoing threat to national security."
The FCC declined to comment on the letter, which was addressed to Chairman Ajit Pai.
SS7, which stands for Signaling System 7, was created in the 1970s as a way for telecommunications carriers to exchange information as they routed calls. Over the years, SS7 expanded to serve a sprawling global cellular system that allowed users to move from network to network '-- within their own nations and across international borders '-- without missing calls, losing service or having to make payments to each carrier that routed a signal to their phones.
But as the number of companies with access to SS7 grew from a handful to many thousands, the lack of built-in security became a growing problem. It was easy for anyone with access to the network to pretend to be a carrier making legitimate requests for information about customers.
Early research of SS7 surveillance focused on its use in tracking user locations through cellphones. But in recent years, a more serious issue has emerged around its ability to intercept calls, texts and data.
Researchers say SS7 tracking systems around the world now create millions of "malicious queries" '-- meaning messages seeking unauthorized access to user information - each month.
One Israeli surveillance vendor, Ability, said in an online marketing video posted last year that its ULIN interception system can eavesdrop on cellphone calls on targets in New York or Los Angeles while agents are "sitting at your desk . . . anywhere in the world." A 2016 brochure for the company depicted phones being tracked in Massachusetts.
Ability declined to comment about SS7 interception or where the company conducts surveillance, but a person familiar with its operations, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe private corporate details, said the ULIN system is not used in the United States. The video, this person said, is used "for demonstration purposes."
The company says on its website that it has had 50 government clients around the world and does not have private-sector clients. Public financial documents listed Ability's major areas of operation as Latin America, Asia and Africa, but it does not name nations. Forbes has previously reported on Ability's capabilities and sales, including to a client in Mexico.
The company, which has struggled financially in recent years, according to news reports, has several competitors, including in Israel, in Eastern Europe and in other parts of the world, say experts in SS7 surveillance.
Wyden said the risks posed by SS7 surveillance go beyond privacy to affect national security. American, Chinese, Israeli and Russian intelligence agencies are the most active users of SS7 surveillance, experts say, and private-sector vendors have put systems within the reach of dozens of other governments worldwide. Sophisticated criminals and private providers of business intelligence also use the surveillance technology.
"America is the Number One target, far and away. Everyone wants to know what's happening in America," said Brian Collins, chief executive of AdaptiveMobile Security, a cellular security firm based in Dublin. "You will always be a target, whether at home or away."
Other experts said SS7 surveillance techniques are widely used worldwide, especially in less developed regions where cellular networks are less sophisticated and may not have any protection against tracking and interception. But the experts agreed that Americans are significant targets, especially of rival governments eager to collect intelligence in the United States and other nations where Americans use their cellphones.
Collins said his firm detected a surge in SS7 queries in U.S. networks in late 2014 that it thinks was related to the Office of Personnel Management hack in which intruders '-- widely reported to be Chinese '-- gained access to the files of millions of federal workers, including in some cases their phone numbers. (Although publicly reported in 2015, the hack began at least a year earlier.)
AdaptiveMobile Security also detected an uptick in malicious SS7 queries this month in the Middle East, in the days after President Trump announced the U.S. withdrawal from the Iran nuclear agreement, Collins said. This surveillance probably was the work of intelligence agencies studying how the U.S. move would affect oil prices and production, Collins said.
CTIA, a wireless industry group based in Washington, said carriers have worked to implement recommendations from federal officials to protect against SS7 surveillance. "The wireless industry is committed to safeguarding consumer security and privacy and collaborates closely with DHS, the FCC and other stakeholders to combat evolving threats that could impact communications networks," CTIA said in a statement.
Firewalls installed by carriers in recent years block many of the malicious queries, but many others are successful in eliciting unauthorized information from cellular carriers worldwide.
"It does happen, and it does happen thousands of times a month," said Karsten Nohl, a telecommunications security expert with Security Research Labs in Berlin.
The most advanced SS7 surveillance systems can monitor the movements of dozens of people for hours at a time, sending alerts if they get close to select areas or to one another, experts say.
German telecommunications researcher Tobias Engel first warned of the potential for SS7 surveillance at a security conference in 2008, during which he demonstrated how to locate a cellphone provided by a volunteer from the audience. Engel also located the cellphone of a Washington Post reporter in 2014, at The Post's request, for an article about the growing availability and effectiveness of such systems.
Researchers have continued to detail SS7 vulnerabilities in recent years, including call, data and text interception. A site reachable on Tor, an encrypted Internet browsing tool, offers SS7 tracking and interception of cellphones for a few hundred dollars a month.
Criminals last year used SS7 to intercept security codes that a bank texted to its customers in Germany, allowing the criminals to steal money from accounts, according to news reports.
Carriers worldwide have gradually added better security, but SS7 does not have any way to verify that carriers sending data requests are who they claim to be. The firewalls increasingly installed by carriers, meanwhile, protect their own customers but typically not people who are roaming on the network, said Engel, the German researcher who first reported the security and privacy risks of SS7.
"It's much simpler to protect your own subscribers," said Engel, now a researcher for GSMK, a mobile communications security company based in Berlin. "It could be that you're vulnerable as soon as you enter somebody else's network, domestic or foreign."
Calls for an aggressive federal response grew after The Post's 2014 article and a "60 Minutes" report in 2016 in which Nohl, one of the German researchers, demonstrated SS7 surveillance risks by intercepting a call to the cellphone of Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Calif., with his permission.
DHS, which declined to comment for this article, issued a report on SS7 cellphone security in April 2017 that noted the risk to federal personnel, "SS7 attack types can be used to target key U.S. Federal Government personnel both in the United States and traveling or working overseas."
The DHS report recommended that carriers adopt new protections. An FCC group, the Communications Security, Reliability and Interoperabilty Council, issued recommendations for improving SS7 security in March 2017 that U.S. carriers have largely adopted.
But Wyden and some other officials say the government must do more to protect American cellphone users by documenting SS7 breaches and commissioning independent testing of the vulnerabilities in national cellular networks - a step that Britain and some other nations have taken.
"The FCC has been studying SS7 vulnerabilities for nearly two years. Enough," said FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel, a Democrat. "It's time for the agency to get serious and come up with a real plan to make sure that our networks are safe and secure."
'Reparations Happy Hour' Invites White People to Pay for Drinks - The New York Times
Thu, 31 May 2018 13:03
''Reparations Happy Hour,'' which was held in Portland, Ore., invited black, brown and indigenous people to a bar and gave them $10 bills as they arrived. The event was mostly funded by white people who were asked not to attend. Credit Cameron Whitten In Portland, Ore., organizers of the ''Reparations Happy Hour'' invited black, brown and indigenous people to a bar and handed them $10 bills as they arrived, a small but symbolic gift mostly funded by white people who were asked not to attend.
Brown Hope, a local activist organization, wanted the event, which was held on Monday, to be a space for people of color in a mostly white city to meet one another, discuss policy issues and plan potential action.
While it was far from the full-scale reparations sought by some as penance for the horrors of slavery and continuing racial injustice, Cameron Whitten, the 27-year-old activist who organized the event, said there was one similarity: It made attendees feel as if their pain were valued and understood.
''It was only $10, but when I saw them I saw their eyes light up,'' he said. ''What I saw there was that people felt like they were finally seen.''
Mr. Whitten said he hoped the event, in addition to building community, would call attention to reparations, the concept that black people should be financially compensated for the generations of trauma that preceded them.
The subject has been the source of spirited debate but has not attracted widespread support. In 2016, an Exclusive Point Taken-Marist Poll found 68 percent of Americans were opposed to reparations, including 81 percent of white people. Among black people, 58 percent supported it and 35 percent were opposed.
In 2014, the writer Ta-Nehisi Coates made a case for reparations in The Atlantic, and The New York Times has published a variety of viewpoints on the topic.
Activists are pinning hopes on H.R. 40, a bill introduced in Congress in January 2017 that would study reparations proposals. It was introduced by Representative John Conyers Jr., a Democrat from Michigan who left Congress in December amid harassment allegations.
Ron Daniels, the president of the Institute of the Black World 21st Century, a group that supports reparations, said they would be necessary for America to ''fully heal itself.'' Any efforts to bring attention to the idea, including a happy hour bearing that name in Portland, could help people organize around the issue, he said.
''Hopefully out of that experience there's some education that takes place,'' Mr. Daniels said.
There was enough interest in the concept to fund occasional happy hours for the rest of the year, though they will be renamed to ''Reparations Power Hour'' out of concern that the ''happy hour'' label was unwelcoming to people who do not drink, Mr. Whitten said.
Anticipating some criticism, he noted that it was not meant to diminish the seriousness of reparations. Should anyone question why white people were not invited, he said, ''They show up by donating to make sure the event happens.'' More than 100 people, not all of them white, donated, he said.
''White people, we have love for you, and we're going to see you. We can't not see you,'' he said. ''Once a month we're going to have these two special hours that we cannot get anywhere else.''
Correction:An earlier version of a picture caption with this article, using information from an event organizer, misstated the given name of a woman who attended ''Reparations Happy Hour.''
Supreme Court sets new limits on police searches '' True PunditTrue Pundit
Thu, 31 May 2018 09:15
PoliticsSupreme Court sets new limits on police searchesThe Supreme Court on Tuesday limited the scope of police searches, ruling that officers must have a warrant to go through a vehicle parked at a home or on its surrounding property.
In an 8-1 ruling, the court reversed a Virginia Supreme Court decision that found the Fourth Amendment's automobile exception allows for warrantless searches of vehicles anytime, anywhere, including at a home or on its surrounding property, which is known as curtilage.
The case centers on Ryan Collins, who argued police had violated his Fourth Amendment right against unreasonable search and seizure when they trespassed on the property of his girlfriend's house, lifted the tarp that covered a black and orange motorcycle, ran its plates and confirmed it was stolen.
Police had suspected the motorcycle was stolen after Collins twice eluded officers who had tried to pull him over for a traffic infraction and found pictures of the bike parked at the top of a driveway on Collins's Facebook page.
Citing court precedent in her majority opinion, Justice Sonia Sotomayor said a search within the meaning of the Fourth Amendment has occurred when a law enforcement officer physically intrudes on the curtilage to gather evidence. '' READ MORE
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Volkert van der Graaf en rechter geven heel Nederland de vinger: meldplicht opgeheven en emigratie aangekondigd '' De Dagelijkse Standaard
Thu, 31 May 2018 08:35
De moordenaar van Pim Fortuyn heeft zijn zin gekregen: hij hoeft zich niet meer elke twee weken te melden bij reclassering. De koelbloedige crimineel is nu van plan te verdwijnen uit Nederland, om anoniem op een onbekende plek een nieuw bestaan op te bouwen. Nederland, de nabestaanden van Pim Fortuyn en onze democratie hebben het nakijken.
Hij heeft het dus toch geflikt, die moordlustige Firestar-zwaaier van een Volkert van der Graaf. Vanochtend werd namelijk bekend dat de bloeddorstige moordenaar van Pim Fortuyn zijn kortgeding bij de Rechtbank in Den Haag gewonnen heeft en zich dus w(C)(C)r heeft weten vrij te maken van een (C)(C)n van zijn voorwaarden van zijn vervroegde vrijlating. Van der Graaf heeft zijn meldplicht geschrapt weten te krijgen:
''Volkert van der Graaf, de moordenaar van Pim Fortuyn, heeft het door hem aangespannen kort geding tegen de Staat gewonnen. Hij hoeft zich niet meer te melden bij de reclassering.
Hij wil zich in het buitenland vestigen. De rechter heeft hem gelijk gegeven. Volgens Van der G. heeft zijn meldplicht geen enkele toegevoegde waarde. De 48-jarige Van der G. moest zich iedere zes weken melden. ''
Alhoewel de celstraf van Van der Graaf officieel nog loopt (dat duurt nog tot april 2020), is hij al sinds 2014 op vrije voeten. Sindsdien maakt hij de rechtstaat het leven zuur door telkens allerlei zaken aan te spannen tegen de reclassering. Hij heeft zich al weten te kwijten van een enkelband, en nu moet ook de meldplicht er aan geloven. De enige voorwaarden die Van der Graaf nog heeft, is dat hij geen contact mag zoeken met nabestaanden en niet met de media mag praten.
En met zijn gewonnen zaak kan Van der Graaf zich gaan richten op een zonnige toekomst: met behoud van uitkering emigreren naar een zonnig oord, zonder al die lastige rotburgers in Nederland die het hem kwalijk nemen dat hij de democratie op 6 mei 2002 een fatale slag heeft toegebracht. Dus sodemieter nu maar lekker op, Volkert. En kom alsjeblieft nooit meer terug.
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Bloed van broer Simon kookt door 'spelletjes' moordenaar Pim Fortuyn - De Telegraaf - Blendle
Thu, 31 May 2018 08:29
Bloed van broer Simon kookt door 'spelletjes' moordenaar Pim Fortuyn
Het is dat hij een drukke baan als wethouder heeft, anders had Simon Fortuyn zich vrijwillig aangeboden om de 'emigratiewens' van Volkert van der Graaf hoogstpersoonlijk in vervulling te laten gaan. De broer van de vermoorde Pim Fortuyn wil dat de veroordeelde killer van de LPF-voorman zo snel mogelijk uit Nederland opkrast, zo vertelt hij aan De Telegraaf.
Rebellion or Counter-Revolution: Made In US In Nicaragua? | News | teleSUR English
Thu, 31 May 2018 08:24
Many wonder if the United States is involved in the student protests of the past month in Nicaragua which attempted to destabilize the country. Western media writes nothing about the issue, while at the same time similar scenarios have played out in Venezuela, Brazil, Cuba, Honduras, Bolivia and other countries in which the left has made progress. At this moment, three Nicaraguan students are touring Europe and Sweden in search of support for their campaign. At least one of the students represents an organization funded and created by the United States.
RELATED: Nicaragua, Venezuela: One Enemy, One Fight For Democracy
The student protests in Nicaragua are described in the Western media as legitimate protests by young Nicaraguans who have spontaneously united to fight the supposed dictatorship. Surely there are many young people who have joined the fight with these ideas. Surely many people here in Sweden have joined and support that struggle. But there is much that indicates that these are not just spontaneous protests. There are many indications that organizations led by the United States waited for the right moment to create chaos, and exacerbate the contradictions to destabilize the democratically elected government of Nicaragua.
Changing Society
One of the three students on tour in Sweden right now is Jessica Cisneros, active in issues of integration and youth participation in political processes. She is a member of the Movimiento Civico de Juventudes (MCJ). That organization is financed, created by and an integral part of the National Democratic Institute. The NDI is an organization that works to change society in other countries. The president of the NDI is Madeleine Albright, former U.S. secretary of state. The general secretary of the MCJ, Davis Jose Nicaragua Lopez, founder of the organization, is also the coordinator of the NDI in Nicaragua and active in a series of similar organizations in Nicaragua and El Salvador.
Excerpt from the NDI website: "The Civic Youth Movement (MCJ) has been part of an NDI project that began in 2015 with the aim of expanding youth leadership and political commitment by providing hands-on training in organizational techniques. Several of the group members are graduates of the Leadership and Political Conduct Certification (CLPM) program that the NDI has supported in conjunction with Nicaraguan universities and civil society organizations."
Yerling Aguilera is from the Polytechnic University (UPOLI) of Managua and has specialized in research on the revolution and the feminist movement. She has also been an employee and consultant for IEEPP in Nicaragua, which works to strengthen the capacity of political, state and social actors for a better informed public through creative and innovative services. IEEPP has received support from the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) of US$224,162 between 2014 and 2017.
Madelaine Caracas participates in the national dialogue currently taking place in Nicaragua. She is also active in the feminist and environmental movement.
RELATED: Nicaragua: Extortion, Dialogue And A Longing for Peace
From 2015 on, the United States expanded its support to Nicaragua, especially through support for leadership courses and money for young people in universities, schools, NGOs and political parties. Organizations that work with feminist movements and women, human rights and the environment have been prioritized.
This from the NDI website: "To ensure that the next generation of leaders will be equipped to govern in a democratic and transparent manner, since 2010 the NDI has partnered with Nicaraguan universities and civic organizations to lead a youth leadership program that has helped prepare more than 2,000 youth leaders, current and future, throughout the country. The NDI has also contributed to Nicaragua's efforts to increase women's political participation and initiatives to reduce discrimination against LGBT people, as well as shared best practices for monitoring electoral processes." Is foreign interference in democracy and elections good for Nicaragua, but unacceptable for the United States and Sweden?
Foreign Interference
It is also interesting to compare what happens in Nicaragua with what happens in other countries. The NDI also works in Venezuela, also with subversive tasks. The activity of the United States and the NDI in Latin America should be compared with the debate on the interference of powers in the electoral systems of the United States, Sweden or Europe. For example, would those countries accept that Russia form and support organizations that train political leaders in Sweden or the United States?
This is how the NDI describes its activities in Venezuela on its website: "The NDI began working in Venezuela in the mid-1990s in response to requests to exchange international experiences on comparative approaches to democratic governance. After closing its offices in Venezuela in 2011, the NDI has continued '' based on requests '' offering material resources to democratic processes, including international approaches on electoral transparency, monitoring of political processes and civic and political organization, and the Institute promotes dialogue among Venezuelans and their civic and political peers and politicians at an international level on topics of mutual interest. "
Organizations from the United States work towards the development of democracy and foreign interference in Nicaragua. According to its website, the Instituto Democratico Nacional (NDI) has 2,000 young leaders in Nicaragua. The National Foundation for Democracy (NED) is another organization that, according to its own version of events, since the 1990s has been dedicated to doing the work that the CIA used to do in secret. It promotes the destabilization of other countries. The NED works with a number of other organizations, media, websites and NGOs in Nicaragua. Officially, its support for Nicaragua amounted to US$4.2 million between 2014 and 2017.
RELATED: Dialogue In Nicaragua: An Inauspicious Start
USAID officially works with medical and disaster relief, but the NDI and the NED support a number of organizations that work with issues concerning women, children, the environment and human rights. On their website, they write that they want to "Promote democracy by training young and emerging leaders and giving them technical help so that they strengthen civil participation and improve local leadership." They do not say whose democracy they want to strengthen: whether it is the vision of democracy in the United States and the CIA, or the people of Nicaragua.
Previously, USAID worked in Bolivia but it was expelled in 2013 for carrying out destabilizing activities. In the same raid, a Danish organization was also expelled. That does not mean the organization necessarily engaged in illegal activities, but that it did work with an organization that received money from the United States. USAID also works in Venezuela, and also says there is work to strengthen "civil society." Its budget in Venezuela in 2015 was US$4.25 million. Its partners in Venezuela are, among others, Freedom House and the NDI.
Creating Change
Who will create change in Nicaragua? And will it be violently or through elections? USAID, NDI and NED have extensive activities in Nicaragua, with thousands of activists trained to "change society," and hundreds of NGOs, universities and political parties that receive money and material for these organizations. The United States participates in this process and its interests are to destabilize the democratically elected Sandinista government.
Believing that the United States is not involved in the riots in Nicaragua is naive. The situation in Nicaragua is serious and a dialogue for peace is necessary. Those responsible for the violence, the criminal fires, the riots, the destruction and the looting must answer for them, both on the side of the demonstrators, as well as on the critical elements, the political groups of young people and the responsible politicians. If, as the student leaders say, Daniel Ortega has ordered the police to shoot to kill, go ahead and have the president tried. And if there has been foreign interference in the internal affairs of Nicaragua, those responsible for it have responded, both from activists in Nicaragua and from politicians in the United States. Many things can change for the better in Nicaragua, but it must be the work of the Nicaraguans themselves and not the money and agenda of the United States determining the changes.
Italy Political Crisis Rattles E.U.: What You Need to Know
Thu, 31 May 2018 08:21
May 30, 2018 05/30/2018 2:08 am By Jonah Shepp Italy's government plunged into crisis on Sunday, sending shockwaves from Brussels to Wall Street. The problem took root in March, when Italy became the latest European country to hold an election with surprisingly disastrous results for the political establishment; the March 4 vote saw mainstream parties on both the right and the left knocked down by a new generation of populist politicians fueled by Euroscepticism and popular frustration over the Mediterranean migrant crisis.
The idiosyncratic, anti-Establishment Five Star Movement finished first with about one-third of the vote, while the League, a right-wing populist/nationalist party running on an explicitly xenophobic anti-immigrant platform, came in third with nearly 18 percent. Although the two parties do not see eye to eye on all issues (in fact, they have opposite base constituencies of poor southerners and rich northerners), they went into coalition together and attempted to form a government.
That process was by no means smooth, but eventually the two parties managed to agree on a deal in mid-May. On Sunday, however, Italian President Sergio Mattarella blocked that deal by rejecting their preferred candidate for finance minister, 81-year-old economist Paolo Savona, who has openly advocated pulling Italy out of the euro.
Uncertainty over the country's future currency was intolerable to investors and mortally threatened Italy's economy, so Mattarella nixed the appointment. Five Star and the League refused to have a government without Savona, so this effectively put the kibosh on their deal.
The president then asked Carlo Cottarelli, a former executive at the International Monetary Fund, to form a government instead. The populist party leaders were furious at what they considered a subversion of the will of the voters and have called for protests and even Mattarella's impeachment. The crisis will culminate in a fresh round of elections sometime in the next few months.
Bond markets, those bellwethers of geopolitical anxiety, freaked out, fearing the possibility of Italy ending up with an even more extreme populist government that would abandon the euro, leave the European Union, or default on Italy's 2.3 trillion euros of sovereign debt. On Tuesday, the value of the euro sank, yields on two-year and ten-year Italian bonds shot up, and the bond-market riot contributed to a nearly 400-point drop in the Dow Jones industrial average.
Why is a domestic political dispute in Rome rattling markets around the world? Here are some answers to the key questions surrounding this week's events.
Did President Mattarella overexert his powers?
Technically, no. As head of state, the president of Italy, who is elected by the parliament every seven years, has the power to name the prime minister and to reject ministerial appointments. Under normal circumstances, when a national election produces a clear winner, these are practically pro forma functions. In a more divided outcome, the president does get to make decisions like which party should get first crack at forming a government, and previous presidents have rejected ministerial candidates without causing national crises.
Sunday's decision to reject a key ministerial appointee on the basis of his ideological stance and effectively abort the Five Star/League coalition government, however, was in some sense unprecedented, as University of Salford politics professor James Newell explains.
In rejecting Savona, the president was really rejecting the coalition's program altogether by saying that a government with unclear stances on the euro and the debt is intolerable. This has led to recriminations from party leaders accusing Mattarella of orchestrating an Establishment coup '-- effectively enabling what Newell calls a ''propaganda coup'' by the populists.
Who is Paolo Savona, and why is the Italian Establishment afraid of him?
Savona is well known as a long-standing critic of the euro and an opponent of Italy's inclusion in the eurozone, which he has characterized as a German scheme to dominate Europe, and darkly compared to other such German schemes of 20th-century vintage. Italy's financial institutions, the European Central Bank, and holders of Italian debt fear that as finance minister, the elderly economist would lead the coalition government to adopt policies or demand changes in E.U. rules that could cast doubt on Italy's commitment to repaying its debt, leading to further downgrades of the country's credit rating.
Their even greater fear is that with Savona, the Italian government might extract concessions from Brussels by threatening to leave the euro. That could be destabilizing even if those threats are idle.
And they may not be idle, according to Italy's center-left Democratic Party. They're already campaigning on what they characterize as a secret plan drawn up by Savona to exit the euro and reintroduce the lira over the course of a single weekend. Savona had proposed this scheme, which he drew up with a team of other anti-euro economists, as a ''Plan B'' should Italy ever need to exit the currency union in a crisis.
Matteo Salvini and Luigi Di Maio, the leaders of the League and the Five Star Movement, insist they have no intention of withdrawing Italy from the eurozone. League lawmaker Giancarlo Giorgetti told the Corriere della Sera newspaper that while some of their members supported such a move, it was not included in the government program the two parties agreed on earlier this month.
Both parties have spoken ambiguously, however, about where they stand on this issue, and their choice of Savona as finance minister raised concerns that they are more open to ditching the euro than they let on.
Will Italy exit the euro or default on its debt?
Most financial analysts say such radical moves are highly unlikely, even if the populist Five Star/League coalition ultimately takes power. That's mainly because leaving the euro, which would likely also result in a sovereign debt crisis, would be exceedingly painful for their constituents.
''Many voters, even if they are very unhappy with the status quo '... do not really want to leave the euro,'' Holger Schmieding, chief economist at Berenberg Bank, told CNN Money. ''They do not like the thought '... that part of their savings may go down the drain.''
Italy's debt is enormous, at 132 percent of its GDP (twice the ratio of Germany and well above the eurozone average of 87 percent). Some observers therefore see parallels to 2012, when the Greek sovereign debt crisis (along with debt concerns in Italy, Spain, and Portugal) put severe strains on the eurozone. Italy's economy is ten times the size of Greece's, meaning the consequences of an Italian default or exit from the euro would be that much more catastrophic.
At this point, however, the market's nervous reaction to Italy may be more of a speculative panic than a rational response: The yield on ten-year Italian bonds is not yet half as high as it was at the peak of the 2012 crisis, and the Italian populists are not openly threatening default and disengagement to force the country's creditors to negotiate its debt on more favorable terms, as Greek populists have done more than once in the past few years.
Italy is the third-largest economy in the eurozone, well integrated into the broader continental economy, and far less of an economic basket case than Greece, so Italians have more to lose in the event of such an upheaval. Even if a League/Five Star government wanted to do it, the economic and political price would be very high.
Instead, what analysts fear is that this government would chip away at Italy's commitment to the euro and the E.U., demanding rule changes and concessions that would put stress on the system. In this version of the nightmare, rather than a sudden break, Italy's membership in the euro or the E.U. grows gradually more untenable until the event dubbed ''Italexit,'' or more cleverly, ''Quitaly,'' becomes unavoidable.
Again, analysts say the chance of these events coming to pass are very small. Then again, most mainstream observers thought Brexit would never happen, either.
So what happens now?
Mattarella is betting that the Eurosceptics will be defeated in the next round of elections due to the Italian public's fears of losing their life savings in a currency crisis. Cottarelli is not expected to actually govern. If the IMF technocrat manages to form a government at all (already doubtful), it almost certainly will not obtain the vote of confidence it would need to actually make policy. Instead, Cottarelli will serve as a stopgap prime minister until new elections can be held.
If he manages to form a government, those elections will take place sometime this autumn. If he can't, however, Mattarella will be forced to dissolve the parliament and hold new elections as early as July 29, which some parties are already demanding. The Five Star Movement is projecting confidence that it will prevail, although the latest polls suggest that the League has gained the most ground since the start of the crisis.
Though they've yet to be scheduled, the upcoming elections are already being billed as a referendum on the euro. Alberto Mingardi, director general of the free-market think tank Istituto Bruno Leoni, writes at Politico Europe that the president has ''chosen the electoral battlefield,'' establishing Italy's relationship with the euro and the E.U. as the stakes for the next round of polls.
Mingardi does not hazard a guess as to which way that referendum will go: On the one hand, the mainstream parties that might stand up for European integration are still as shambolic as when they suffered their stunning populist rout in March. On the other, making the election about the euro will force the League and Five Star to clarify their intentions with regard to the union and the common currency '-- and voters may not like what they hear.
There's also no guarantee that the League and Five Star, which are not entirely natural allies, will still want to form a coalition together even if they emerge victorious again '-- but then, the same is true of the center-left Democrats and the center-right Forza Italia.
Mattarella is clearly hoping that Italian voters, who themselves own 5 percent of the government's debt, will be sufficiently scared of Italexit's consequences for their household finances and will reconsider their votes for populist upstarts. Without a charismatic figure analogous to France's Emmanuel Macron, however, Italy's center may have a hard time rallying voters around this sensible position, Mingardi suspects.
Whichever way the polls shake out, the outcome will be clarifying for Italy's future, economics commentator Ferdinando Giugliano argues at Bloomberg '-- but only if the populists stop playing coy and take a firm position in favor of Quitaly-ing.
''If the Eurosceptics won the day,'' he reasons, ''they would have the popular mandate to hire the finance minister of their choice'' and pursue their anti-euro policies openly. If they lose, investors will get the firm commitment they are looking for from Italy that it won't leave the currency union. If the populist parties continue to capitalize on their ambiguous position, however, ''investors will continue to take flight and Mattarella will still have an impossible job.''
Italy's Political Crisis Rattles E.U.: What You Need to Know
Doc Searls Weblog · Wanted: Online Pubs Doing Real (and therefore GDPR-compliant) Advertising
Thu, 31 May 2018 08:20
This is what greets me when I go to the Washington Post site from here in Germany:
So you can see it too, wherever you are, here's the URL I'm redirected to on Chrome, on Firefox, on Safari and on Brave. All look the same except for Brave, which shows a blank page.
Note that last item in the Premium EU Subscription column: ''No on-site advertising or third-party tracking.''
Ponder for a moment how the Sunday (or any) edition of the Post's print edition would look with no on-paper advertising. It would be woefully thin and kind of worthless-looking. Two more value-adds for advertising in the print edition:
It doesn't track readers, which is the sad and broken norm for newspapers and magazines in the online world'--a norm now essentially outlawed by the GDPR, and surely the reason the Post is running this offer.It sponsors the Post. Tracking-based advertising, known in the trade as adtech, doesn't sponsor anything. Instead it hunts down eyeballs its spyware already knows about, no matter where they go. In other words, if adtech can shoot a Washington Post reader between the eyes at the Skeevy Lake Tribune, and the Skeevy is cheaper, it might rather hit the reader over there.So here's the message I want the Post to hear from me, and from every reader who values what they do:
That's what I get from the print edition, and that's what I want from the online edition as well.
So I want two things here.
One is an answer to this question: Are ANY publishers in the online world selling old-fashioned ads that aren't based on tracking and therefore worth more than the tracking kind? (And are GDPR-compliant as well, since the ads aren't aimed by collected personal data.)
The other is to subscribe to the Post as soon as they show me they're willing to do what I ask: give me those real ads again. And stop assuming that all ads need to be the tracking-based kind.
Thans in advance.
Seattle Made Top 10 Most Expensive Cities to Live Before the Homeless Tax | Armstrong Economics
Thu, 31 May 2018 08:13
Business Insider has published a map of the top 10 most expensive places to live and work and guess what '' Seattle is in the list even before they impose this new outrageous tax of $275 per employee for companies that do more than $20 million in business annually. They claim it is for the homeless people which is really nonsnse. It's like New York City taxes cigarettes to make people stop and when they do, they tax the electronic cigarettes because their revenue declines.
The number of businesses being hit is not just Amazon. These cities are becoming the place to avoid and they just never stop with the taxes. They go through money like it is water to be flushed down the toilet.
Seattle has certainly reach the top our the list of where NOT to recommend any business establishment. This is how empires, states, and cities die. They just keep imposing more and more taxes without end so it simply becomes less burdensome to pick up and leave. The top states where there is now a net migration out are California, New York, and New Jersey. Cities that are dying rapidly are Chicago. Seattle's homeless tax will most likely be the straw that breaks the back of that city as well.
What is astonishing is the fact that Amazon put a hold on its development of offices there, they was to call this extortion justifying criminally charging Amazon? Clearly, nobody should even consider Seattle as a place for business and the aggressiveness and insanity of taxation in that city will not end here. It just may be time to leave before it is too late and it becomes a crime to migrate.
Evidence Grows that Hawaii Volcanic Eruption Caused by Puna Geothermal Venture >> Exopolitics
Thu, 31 May 2018 08:10
The surge in volcanic activity in the lower Puna region of the Big Island of Hawaii is concentrated in the area surrounding the Puna Geothermal Venture. Scientific data clearly links the unacknowledged fracking activity at the Puna Geothermal Venture as a factor in what is occurring with lava flows and earthquakes.
More scientific data shows how the fracking may have been deliberately designed to create a geological process by which lava would drain from Kilauea's summit into the East Rift Zone so as to create large new vents that would destabilize the geology, and possibly trigger a major collapse in the Hilina Fault System.
A video prepared by Pacific Tsunamic Warning Center clearly shows that the epicenter of earthquake activity centered in the lower Puna region is adjacent to the Puna Geothermal Venture.
The following map from the video depicts all the earthquakes and the eruption site for the recent lava outbreak from 30 April to 6 May. The eruption occurs mainly in Leilani Estates, which is right next to the Puna Geothermal Venture.
The following map by the US Geological Service shows where the Puna Geothermal Venture (marked PGV) is in relation to the current volcanic eruption.
Here's a photo showing the lava outbreak and its very close proximity to the Puna Geothermal Venture (circled in red) on May 22. Since then, it has begun flowing onto the property, but still not reached any of the wells.
The scientific data clearly shows how the Puna Geothermal Venture (PGV) is at the epicenter of the volcanic eruption. Is this merely chance or by design?
In my previous article and video published on May 15, I wrote about how the fracking activity at PGV has been scientifically linked to earthquakes. The following diagram was included which clearly showed the strong correlation:
Since the publication of my article, there have been other articles linking the fracking at PGV with earthquakes, and also raising the question of whether the fracking caused the volcanic eruption. The most prominent one has come from Jon Rappoport, who wrote a May 22 article on his blogsite titled: ''Did fracking cause the Hawaii volcano eruption?''
In my May 15 article and video, I mentioned the Hilina Slump and how it may have been related to the fracking occurring at PGV. This has led to much criticism in the video's comments section, but the scientific facts do show that earthquake activity is related to movements in the Hilina Fault System. Here's a map showing the Hilina Fault System in relation to the East Rift Zone.
The following map produced by the Hawaii Volcano Observatory shows how the recent earthquake activity led to the Hilina Slump slipping towards the Pacific Ocean Observatory by about two meters, which is massive in geological terms.
Here's how an article produced by the Berkeley Seismology Lab explained the above photo:
While the earthquakes under the summit and under the eruption center at the eastern end of the rift zone are generated by the movement of magma, the big event and its aftershocks under the pali have a different origin. This becomes obvious in Figure 2 [reproduced above]. It shows how the permanent GPS stations installed and operated by the Hawaii Volcano Observatory moved in response to the 6.9 quake. The red arrows indicate the direction of horizontal motion and all of them point to the southeast. The length of each arrow represents the extent of the motion with the longest ones having moved by more than 2 feet. This shows that the flank of the cliff on the southern coast of Hawaii has moved further towards the ocean.
What the article didn't mention was that the 6.9 quake on May 4 was triggered by the massive outflow of lava from Kilauea Summit, HalemaÊ>>umaÊ>>u crater, into the East Rift Zone. Basically, the volcanic eruption in the Lower Puna region (where the Puna Geothermal Venture is located) is being fueled by fresh lava from the summit of Kileaua, which is being drained towards it.
While it began slowly as old lava oozed out of the new volcanic fissures in Leilani Estates, the recent upsurge is a result of fresh new lava arriving from the Kilauea Summit. The Honolulu Advertiser explained the process:
The first weeks of the eruption saw pasty, crumbly, slower-moving aa lava oozing slowly through the fissures. But that changed Friday afternoon, scientists said, when preliminary results from a testing sample showed a different composite of lava, the smoother pahoehoe variety that is generally fresher, hotter and faster.
The following diagram shows the dynamics of the lava flows linking Kilauea Summit, the Pu'u'O'o Vent, and the East Rift Zone.
An article by Scott Johnson in Ars Technica, explained the process as follows:
KÄlauea's main magma chamber seems to be a few kilometers below HalemaÊ>>umaÊ>>u Crater at its summit. When the volcano's guts gurgle with a new injection of magma from below, the lava lake in HalemaÊ>>umaÊ>>u Crater rises. The conduits and crevices that constitute KÄlauea's ''plumbing'' extend from the summit region over to the East Rift Zone. So after lava rises in HalemaÊ>>umaÊ>>u Crater, the lake sometimes drains back down as the new magma moves on toward the eastern section of the volcano.
This is where we finally get to the issue of whether the fracking at Puna Geothermal Venture was secretly an attempt to weaken the underlying geology in order to create a path for fresh lava to drain from Kilauea summit into the East Rift Zone. As the following diagram of the East Rift Zone illustrates, lava follows the path of least resistance in a highly pressurized environment.
This principle would be well known to any geologist, or plumber if we use Johnson's analogy. This means that some would have been aware from the inception of the PGV in 1993, that the process of using highly pressurized water on subterranean rocks (aka fracking), severely compromising the underground environment, would effectively open up a new path for lava to flow from the Kilauea summit and the Pu'u'O'o Vent
Apparently, this is exactly what was planned by those behind the Puna Geothermal Venture according to Paul Collin, who has strong ties to the U.S. intelligence community:
It is understood that Hawaii's geothermal power company ''Puna Geothermal Venture'' (PGV) purposefully ''drilled'' wells and ''fracked'' into the ground in such a way that lava from Earth's mantle would eventually be redirected to open-up and spout a 'brand new volcano within the island of Hawaii, and sure enough facts set forth by a USGS chart and briefing that lava has now been routed right along the same linear path south-east, which actually punched-out a 'brand new caldera volcano' within the ''Lower East Rift Zone'' adjacent to the extremely weak debris landmass known as the 'Hilani Slump' consisting of 10% of Hawaii's southeastern land mass that was already slipping into the Pacific Ocean 'without the new lava delta' growing huger; about 400 meters per hour on land (alone) '' threatening a tsunami event from coast to coast.
In my May 15 article, I described how the creation of a massive tsunami through a collapse of the Hilina slump was the secret purpose behind the creation of the Puna Geothermal Venture, whose owners are linked to the Rothschild family.
I wish to state for the record that I don't believe the plan will succeed, and that the hoped-for megatsunami that would cripple the United States economically and militarily for decades to come will not occur. However, it is vitally important to expose this plan was and who is behind it.
My view is that the Rothschild family has chosen China as the hub for the kind of New World Order that the Deep State/global elite would like to emerge. That would be an openly authoritarian state where AI technology is used to monitor citizens and quickly remove troublemakers expressing dissenting political views.
The United States is the main obstacle to such an authoritarian New World Order being created, and secret geo-engineering was therefore undertaken in Hawaii that would create a megatsunami via a major collapse of the Hilina fault system.
If the plan had worked, then it is not hard to see how the U.S. would have been unable to prevent a New World Order emerging '' based on China's authoritarian socio-political model masked behind AI technology designed to appeal to a tech savvy Millennial generation.
It is also important to mention that this is the second time in 2018 that Hawaii was targeted by the Deep State/global elites for some kind of catastrophic event that would economically and militarily weaken the United States. On January 13, 2018, a ballistic nuclear missile was sent by a secret CIA linked Navy, called the ''Dark Fleet'', in a false flag attack that was meant to embroil the United States in a catastrophic nuclear war.
In a January 20 article, I provided documents and references showing how the CIA has built its own secret fleet that conducts covert operations on behalf of the Deep State/global elite. Thankfully, that plan failed due to the intervention of a U.S. Air Force based secret space program that shot down the missile, as I discussed another article.
Since 2004, I have lived on Hawaii's Big Island. On May 1, 2018, I moved from the lower Puna region just as the earthquakes intensified, to the Kona side of the Big Island. It boggles the mind that such a beautiful part of our planet is being repeatedly targeted by the global elite for catastrophes that will facilitate their New World Order plans.
I sincerely hope that appropriate legal and political action is taken against: all those behind the Puna Geothermal Venture for their role in the devastation that is being caused in the lower Puna region by their secret fracking; the local County officials that were likely bribed to remain silent over the risk of permitting such a venture; and also against the global elites who put together such a nefarious plan.
(C) Michael E. Salla, Ph.D. Copyright Notice
[Note: Audio Version of above article is available here or can be viewed below]
Further Reading Hawaii Volcanic Eruption Intentionally Triggered to Generate Massive Tsunami? QAnon on the Rothschild, Saudi & Soros Puppet Masters behind the Deep State QAnon Corroborates Hawaii Missile Attack & Hunt for Rogue CIA Submarine Was a Space Based Weapons Platform Used Against Hawaii bound Ballistic Missile? The Secret Navy behind the Ballistic Missile Attack on Hawaii Was a Nuclear Missile Attack on Hawaii Thwarted by a Secret Space Program? Trump Executive Order targets Deep State & Opens Door to Full Disclosure
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Tags: Deep State, Hawaii eruption, Kilauea Volcano, Puna Geothermal Venture
Edward Mezvinsky & Marjorie Margolies, Marc's Parents: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know '' Heavy.com
Thu, 31 May 2018 04:00
Marc Mezvinsky's parents, Edward Mezvinsky and Marjorie Margolies (formerly Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky), both served in Congress and have colorful pasts in politics. They are now the in-laws of Chelsea Clinton and grandparents to Chelsea and Marc Mezvinsky's two children.
ABC News calls the Mezvinskys a ''once powerful political family.'' Edward Mezvinsky spent time in federal prison for a felony fraud scheme, and his wife is a former television reporter and adoption advocate who lost her Congressional seat after casting the deciding vote for Bill Clinton's federal tax-raising budget.
Marc Mezvinsky was prominently featured at Chelsea's side during the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia.
Here's what you need to know:
1. Edward Mezvinsky Was Convicted of Fraud & Spent Time in Federal Prison For a Ponzi SchemeMarc's father, Edward, was convicted for ''running a Ponzi scheme,'' according to Politico.
In 2002, Edward Mezvinsky pleaded guilty to 31 counts of felony bank fraud after being accused of stealing almost ''$10 million from unsuspecting investors, including $309,000 from his 86-year-old mother-in-law,'' reports Politico. He blamed bipolar disorder, says ABC News. The court records say, ''The defendant, Edward M. Mezvinsky, pleaded guilty to various counts of fraud, false statements, filing a false tax return and structuring currency transactions. On January 13, 2003, this Court sentenced the defendant and, among other things, ordered him to pay $9,399,354.47 in restitution to numerous victims.''
In 2009, ABC News reported, ''Mezvinsky was convicted in 2002 of bilking his associates, friends and family members '-- even his own late mother-in-law '-- out of millions of dollars. Despite being released in April 2008 after serving five years in prison, Mezvinsky remains on federal probation and still owes almost $9.4 million in restitution to his victims.'' A court document in 2013 said he still owned more than $8.1 million.
According to ABC News, Edward Mezvinsky also ''fell prey to a number of get-rich-quick schemes,'' including a Nigerian scam that involved a chemical that ''was supposed to remove ink off of $100 bills.'' The New York Post says Mezvinsky spent time in federal prison for perpetrating a ''one-man crime wave'' by ''routinely'' pulling ''business scams that netted him $10 million in ill-gotten loot.'' Politico also mentioned the Nigerian scheme, adding, ''Mezvinsky eventually got in so deep that he fell for one of the original Nigerian-guy-needs-cash email scams, losing up to an estimated $3 million just to try to feed the scheme.''
Politico says that Marc Mezvinsky's parents declared bankruptcy during the middle of a run she was making for Rick Santorum's Senate seat. They owed creditors more than $7 million.
An Associated Press story at the time of Edward Mezvinsky's sentencing reported that Mezvinsky, then 65, received a nearly seven-year prison term ''for defrauding investors'' and ''collected millions of dollars starting in the 1980s. It was supposed to have been invested in several international business deals, but instead went to prop up a globe-trotting lifestyle and failed get-rich-quick schemes.''
Marjorie Margolies walked her son down the aisle when he married Chelsea Clinton because the family is still angry at Edward Mezvinsky, says Showbiz411. However, The New York Post quoted Edward as saying he was grateful to be part of the wedding and said he was remorseful for the crimes he committed. UK Daily Mail says Marc Mezvinsky, Chelsea's husband, also lost investors' money by investing in Greece while working for a hedge fund.
2. Edward Mezvinsky Asked Bill Clinton to Pardon Him But It Wasn't GrantedFormer president Bill Clinton and his son-in-law Marc Mezvinsky at a 2015 event in New York City.
Politico reported that Edward Mezvinsky and his wife, Marjorie, ''pleaded with the former president for a presidential pardon to head off the looming federal case.''
The documents were released by Clinton's presidential library and included a letter from Edward Mezvinsky that said, ''I have real reason to believe that without a pardon, charges will be brought against me in the very near future, and that I will then be faced with a long and difficult process of defending myself, and ultimately the prospect of a long prison term,'' said Politico.
Marc Mezvinsky and Chelsea Clinton attend a 2015 event in New York City.
Marjorie Mezvinsky wrote Politico that she did not believe the White House took any action on the requests and the political site said it's not clear whether Clinton saw the letters. ABC News says Chelsea Clinton and Marc Mezvinsky met as children at a political retreat and fell in love at Stanford University. According to ABC, Marc Mezvinsky avoids the spotlight and has described himself as a ''nerdy Jewish boy from Philly.''
Television star Roseanne Barr tweeted about Chelsea's husband on May 29, 2018, writing, ''CORRECTION: CHELSEA CLINTON IS NOT MARRIED TO A SOROS NEPHEW. HER HUSBAND IS THE SON OF A CORRUPT SENATOR, SO SORRY!'' Snopes has debunked the false rumor that Marc Mezvinsky is related to billionaire George Soros. Barr then apologized for a tweet posted on the same day comparing former Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett to an ape. ABC then cancelled Roseanne's show. ''Roseanne's Twitter statement is abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with our values, and we have decided to cancel her show,'' ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey said in a statement released on Tuesday, May 29, 2018.
3. Mezvinsky's Parents Are Divorced & Raised 11 Children TogetherIn this handout image provided by Genevieve de Manio, Chelsea Clinton (R) weds Marc Mezvinsky at the Astor Courts Estate on July 31, 2010 in Rhinebeck, New York. (Getty)
A Congressional history of Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky's life says she became so ''moved by the experience'' of covering a story on Korean orphans as a television reporter in 1970 that she ''became the first single woman in the United States to adopt a foreign child, a Korean girl.''
The biography says she also adopted a Vietnamese girl a few years later. While covering another story on adopted children, she met Edward Mezvinsky, who was then a representative from Iowa. They married in 1975 and raised 11 children, including the two children Margolies-Mezvinsky adopted, ''Mezvinsky's four children from a previous marriage, two sons born to them, and three Vietnamese boys whom they adopted together,'' says the history published by Congress.
Marc Mezvinsky is the eldest of the couple's two birth children; the second, Andrew, is an artist, Politico says. Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky later authored a book on refugee children. The Mezvinskys divorced in 2007, says the bio.
4. Edward Mezvinsky Served in Congress & Was a Democratic Party State ChairmanMarc Mezvinsky, Chelsea Clinton, holding her newborn son Aidan, and Hillary Clinton exit Lenox Hill Hospital, June 20, 2016 in New York City. (Getty)
According to the U.S. Congress biographical directory, Mezvinsky was born in Ames Iowa on Jan. 17, 1937. He was a representative from Iowa who attended public schools and received a bachelor's degree from the University of Iowa in 1960, an M.A. in political science from the University of California at Berkeley in 1963, and a JD from Berkeley in 1965. He was admitted to the Iowa bar.
The biography says that Mezvinsky was a legislative assistant to U.S. Rep Neal Smith (Iowa) in the 1960s, and was a member of the Iowa state legislature before being elected as a Democrat to U.S. Congress in the 1970s. He was defeated in 1976 in a reelection campaign, says the biography.
The biography says he served as Democratic Party state chairman in Pennsylvania in the 1980s and unsuccessfully ran for lieutenant governor in Pennsylvania in 1990. He lives in Pennsylvania, said the biography.
5. Marjorie Margolies Also Served in Congress & Lost Her Seat By Supporting Bill Clinton's Budget Getty/Congressional photo Marc Mezvinsky, Chelsea Clinton, and Marjorie Margolies
According to the U.S. Congress biographical directory, Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on June 21, 1942. She graduated from high school in Baltimore, Maryland before receiving a bachelor's degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 1963. She was a CBS News Foundation Fellow at Columbia University in New York and then worked as a television journalist for WCAU-TV from 1967-1971 and then served as a television journalist for NBC from 1971-1991.
She was elected to Congress as a Democrat in 1993 and served two years before being defeated in 1994, says the Congressional biography. She has served as chair of the National Women's Business Council as well as director of the U.S. delegation to the United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women in 1995. She ran unsuccessfully for the U.S. House in 2014, says the bio. Bill and Hillary Clinton supported her in the 2014 race, says ABC News. ABC News said her campaign was hampered by a report that she had ''doubled her own salary as head of a small, largely taxpayer-funded charity into the six figures'' while Edward Mezvinsky faced fraud charges.
A history of Margolies-Mezvinsky published by the U.S. House says: ''Her brief congressional career turned, quite literally, on a single vote when the Pennsylvania Congresswoman abruptly backed the William J. Clinton administration's budget after being an outspoken critic of the legislation.''
She spoke at the 1992 Democratic National Convention, and she had run as a ''non traditional Democrat'' advocating reduced spending for taxes and social programs, says a U.S. House history on her. However, she switched her vote on the Clinton budget after receiving a personal call from him even though it proposed a federal tax increase, said the Congressional history. Clinton was one vote short to get his budget passed, recalls Time Magazine. Time Magazine says she lost her seat over the vote as she served in a Republican-leaning Democratic district.
Joy Reid Promoted Alex Jones 9/11 Conspiracy Documentary on Her Old Blog | National Review
Thu, 31 May 2018 03:55
Joy Reid(MSNBC via YouTube)MSNBC personality Joy Reid encouraged readers of her now-defunct blog to view a documentary that accuses the U.S. government of orchestrating the 9/11 attacks, Buzzfeed News reported Wednesday.
In a March 2006 blog post entitled ''The Official Story,'' archived by the WayBack Machine, Reid linked to the 80 minute viral web documentary ''Loose Change 9/11,'' which was co-produced by InfoWars' Alex Jones and released in 2005.
''The fundamental question is: do you believe the official story of 9/11?'' Reid's blog post reads. ''If you do, great. If you don't, then everything that happened after that is called into serious question. Even if you're agnostic, or you tend to believe that al-Qaida attacked the World Trade Center and Pentagon and that the government had no warning such a thing could happen, it's worth taking a second look.''
Reid continued to engage in 9/11 conspiracy-mongering in a subsequent March 2006 blog post entitled ''Flashback: September 30, 2001,'' which suggests that the authorities were able to identify the 9/11 terrorists in a suspiciously short amount of time.
''For that matter, why did any of the WTV [sic] buildings fall'...?'' Reidblog states. ''Somehow I think it will be a generation before we get the full story on what happened on 9/11?'' the blog post reads, referencing a question that has been widely posed so-called by 9/11 truthers about why World Trade Center tower 7 fell despite not having been hit by a plane.
Reid's old blog came under scrutiny in December after researchers exposed a series of anti-gay posts she authored in the mid 2000's.
The ''AM Joy'' host initially apologized in December after the initial batch of problematic posts were uncovered, but later claimed that a separate group of posts, revealed in April, were the product of an unknown hacker's smear campaign.
MSNBC and Reid's attorney have both cited an ongoing FBI investigation into the alleged hacking campaign in order to substantiate her claims, but the FBI has never confirmed the existence of such a probe. Jonathan Nichols, the independent cybersecurity expert Reid hired to back up her claims, previously provided information to the FBI that prompted an investigation that one source characterized to Buzzfeed as a waste of time.
George Osborne's London Evening Standard sells its editorial independence to Uber, Google and others '' for £3 million | openDemocracy
Thu, 31 May 2018 03:53
Exclusive: Newspaper promised six commercial giants ''money-can't-buy'' news coverage in a lucrative deal, leaving millions of Londoners unaware of who's paying for their news.
Image: George Osborne arriving at the Evening Standard offices. Credit: Victoria Jones/PA Images, all rights reserved
London's Evening Standard newspaper, edited by theformer chancellor George Osborne, has agreed a £3 million deal with six leadingcommercial companies, including Google and Uber, promising them''money-can't-buy'' positive news and ''favourable'' comment coverage,openDemocracy can reveal.
The project, called London 2020, is being directedby Osborne. It effectively sweeps away the conventional ethical divide betweennews and advertising inside the Standard '' and is set to include ''favourable''news coverage of the firms involved, with readers unable to differentiatebetween "news" that is paid-for and other commercially-branded content.
Leading companies, most operating globalbusinesses, were given detailed sales presentations by Evening Standardexecutives at the newspaper's west London offices in an effort to sign them up to the lucrative deal.
Among those that have paid half a million pounds eachto be involved are international taxi-app firm Uber, which is facing animminent court appeal against the decision to cancel its licence to operate inLondon. The Evening Standard has previously come under fire for not declaring Osborne's£650,000-a-year part time job with the fund managers BlackRock, who hold a £500m stake in Uber.
The global tech giant, Google, still recoveringfrom reputational damage over its low UK tax bills and criticism over its closerelationship to the Cameron-Osborne government,has also signed up.
Some companies, including Starbucks, walked awayfrom the Evening Standard's pitch, rejecting the offer of paying to boost theirreputations through tailored news and comment.
London 2020 is scheduled to start on June 5.Unbranded news stories, expected to be written by staff reporters '' but paidfor by the new commercial ''partners'' as part of the 2020 deal '' have alreadybeen planned for inclusion in the paper's news pages within a week of theproject's launch.
A big commercial pay-offThe London Evening Standard has a circulation ofclose to 900,000 and distributes more copies within a two-mile radius ofWestminster than the Times does across the UK nationally. Many Londoncommuters, who pick up their free copy of the Standard at underground and railstations, will be unaware that they will be reading paid-for news coverage thatis part of wider commercial deal.
An increasing number of British newspapers oftencarry ''native advertising'', essentially paid-for commercials designed to look like independenteditorial articles.
Although the 2020 campaigns will involve branded,native and advertorial pages, along with public debates hosted by the Standard,the six partners have also been promised the Standard will carry''money-can't-buy'' positive news and ''favourable'' comment pieces that willappear to readers as routine, independently written editorial.
By the established industry definition of ''news'' ''which makes or breaks a newspaper's integrity and its editor's reputation '' acommercial pay-off is supposed to play no part.
"...something you might do in Saudi Arabia, but not here
One Starbucks senior executive, who asked not to benamed, told openDemocracy: ''Buying positive news coverage is PR death'...something you might do in Saudi Arabia, but not here. This wasn't rightfor us. We do engage in advertorial [a hybrid mix of advertising and editorial]but that's justmarketing. We don't need to buy our reputation.''
openDemocracycontacted the Evening Standard/ESI Media, Uber and Google for their comments onthe London 2020 project. At the time of publishing, no response had beenreceived from any of the three.
'Improving London for the benefit of all'?Uber's involvement offers furtherconflicts-of-interest for George Osborne. The world's largest fund manager,BlackRock, pays Osborne £650,000 a year for a one-day-a-week role as anadviser. BlackRockalso has an investment stake in Uber worth £500m.
Image: Twitter/Fair use
Google's decision to involve itself in thispaid-for news deal will also raise eyebrows, given the objectives of its Digital News Initiativein Europe. The DNI has a budget of '‚¬150 million over the next three years.Google have stated their aim is to ''combat misinformation and disinformation''and ''help consumers distinguish fact from fiction online''.
London 2020 involves six ''themed projects'' runningfor two years. These include politicised initiatives on clean air, plasticpollution, schools and workplace tech and a project designed to addressLondon's housing crisis. The six 2020 ''partners'' have each paid half a millionpounds to head projects that will be sold to Standard readers as ''improvingLondon for the benefit of all.''
In language lifted directly from Osborne's years ashead of the UK Treasury in David Cameron's government, the project waspresented to potential partners as aiming to highlight London as an ''innovativeand economic powerhouse'' which is ''fit for the future''.
The paid-for campaigns will conclude close to thedate of the next London mayoral elections in 2020. Partners have been promisedthe Standard will be ''dedicated to delivering'' the aims of the six projectsover the next two years.
'Theatrically-constructed news'As part of the sales pitch at the EveningStandard's West London offices, would-be partners were told to expect campaignsthat will ''generate numerous news stories, comment pieces and high-profilebackers''.
One executive with knowledge of the project saidthat the paying partners were told that their company's own plannedcommunications and marketing strategies could be coordinated with the Standard'snews coverage. The Standard would trail positive ''news'' from the six 2020partners, with other news organisations and media outlets expected to follow.
Image: Presentation given by Evening Standard executives promisingcompanies ''money-can't-buy'' news and comment stories
Another executive was told the ''money-can't-buy''campaigns in the Standard aimed to create ''news that will make news, but newsthat comes with a positive message.'' According to one insider: ''Whatwas being offered was clear '' theatrically constructed news, showing everythinggood being done. ''
''What was being offered was clear '' theatrically constructed news, showing everything good being done. ''
Uber, for its half-million fee, will be given thebranded lead role in the ''clean air project'' which is supposed to highlight thebenefits of ''cleaner transport'' and of turning London ''electric'' by 2020.
Starbucks was offered the ''plastic pollutionproject'' which claims it will be ''lobbying to sharply reduce London'ssingle-use plastic consumption.'' The coffee company refused to sign up, tellingStandard executives they already had their own plans.
Google's fee will cover parts of the schools andwork tech projects. Both involve the promised promotion of digital skills andthe development of a ''network of digital training hubs.''
For their £3 million the partners have also beenpromised a special monthly print section themed to individual projects; a''bespoke'' social media strategy including readers polls; and public debates,exhibitions and large-scale events organised by the Standard.
The deal is also set to include ''specially createdwraps'', where the front and back pages of the newspaper become a large showcaseadvert, along with special ''native advertising'' that matches the form anddesign of the Standard's editorial pages.
Last week all the department heads in the Standard,including the news and comment editors, were given their first sight of theLondon 2020 project. Until then Osborne had confined the project to a smallcore team.
End of 'church and state' divideEarlier this year openDemocracy exposed a similarpaid-for deal at the Evening Standard involving the Swiss bio-chem andagriculture company, Syngenta. Positive news coverage and skewedpublic debates were part of the arrangement with the commercial division of theStandard, ESI Media.
Staff news reporters were involved in the Syngentacoverage which included telling Standard readers how GM crops would help solvethe world's food problems '' without mentioning ESI's lucrative deal with theGM-producing giant Syngenta.
ESI Media, owned by the Moscow-based basedoligarch, Alexander Lebedev and run in London by his son Evgeny, also governsthe UK's online Independent newspaper, which is located in the same Kensingtonoffice as the Standard.
The group commercial director of ESI, JonO'Donnell, has previously said ESI no longer sees itself asjust involved in advertising, but was now a ''media business''. O'Donnell hasalso said the once ''strict divide between the so-called 'church and state'[editorial and advertising] was doing more harm than good.''
'Converting PR into news '' for a price' Details of London 2020 and Osborne's lead role indriving the project has brought criticism from leading media commentators and industry figures.
The journalist and broadcaster, Peter Oborne,currently associate editor of The Spectator and a political columnist with theDaily Mail, resigned as the chief political commentator of the Daily Telegraphin 2015. He alleged there was an unscrupulous relationship between theeditorial and advertising departments at the Telegraph, which led to thesuppression of negative stories about the global banking giant HSBC because itwas a major source of revenue. His resignationletter was published by openDemocracy. The Telegraphdismissed Oborne's claims.
Speaking in reaction to the London 2020 deal, hetold openDemocracy: ''George Orwell '' who worked for the Evening Standard '' oncesaid that journalism is printing what someone else does not want printed, andeverything else is public relations. George Osborne, as the Standard's editor,appears to be ignoring the dangers Orwell pointed out and is converting PR intonews '' for a price.
''It's essential that the commercial armof any newspaper is kept at arm's length from editorial. openDemocracy'sreport suggests that news and PR have become hopelessly intertwined andconfused at the Standard. George Osborne as editor has a great many questionsto answer as to why he's doing this '' the main one being that the news andcomment pages of his newspaper seem to be up for sale. If this is allowed, howcan the integrity of this newspaper be maintained?''
General Secretary of the Licensed TaxiDrivers' Association, Steve McNamara, accused the Standard of putting ''itsprofits ahead of Londoners'' by selling favourable coverage to Uber.
''Uber was stripped of its licence inLondon for failing to protect passengers in this city. Uber deliberately didnot report serious crimes or conduct appropriate background checks on itsdrivers. Buying positive news coverage to try and influence the upcominglicence appeal hearing is the lowest of the low. If Uber is really sorry forits 'mistakes' it should use this money to clean up its operation and pay itsdrivers more.''
Man shouting 'Allahu akbar' stabs police dog to death, cops say | Fox News
Thu, 31 May 2018 03:51
A Syrian man was shot in the Netherlands on Wednesday after he allegedly shouted ''Allahu akbar'' from a balcony and killed a K-9 officer.
Police tried to calm the man, who was in Schiedam, near the port city of Rotterdam, but were unsuccessful. Law enforcement agents entered the apartment and the 26-year-old man attacked them, police said.
The man also stabbed the police dog, which later died of its injuries.
Schiedam Mayor Co Lamers didn't identify the man, but said he was a Syrian who had been living with his father in the city since last year.
"The man was known to several help organizations but this was an escalation we had not seen coming," Lamers said.
The man, according to Dutch media outlet Nederlandse Omroep Stichting, underwent surgery and is now in stable condition.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
#Spygate: The Coming Storm - American Greatness
Thu, 31 May 2018 02:57
I n a land and time not so far away, millions of Americans lived in blissful ignorance, unaware of mundane stuff like which cabinet members flew on private planes, or how often the president golfed on the weekends, or how the children of illegal immigrants were cared for. I call these halcyon days, ''The Obama Administration.'' Few of our now-woke friends on the Left gave nary a thought to the plight of minors who were here illegally for whatever reason (either brought by their parents or traveling alone) between 2009 and 2017.
But this is just one of a gazillion policies that now outrages the former residents of Obama's Pleasant Valley Sunday cul de sac. Since the Trump Administration that announced adults who cross the border illegally will be arrested- and their children will therefore be separated from them '' the Left is in meltdown mode. Trump haters apparently are unhappy that the president is reversing Obama's policy of housing immigrant families together in two-bedroom suites at the local Ritz-Carlton. (Kidding, obviously. Even the Washington Post admitted, ''at the peak of the 2014 child-immigrations crisis, the Obama administration used [military] bases to house more than 7,000 children.)
Many took to Twitter to vent their fury, reposting an article on azcentral.com that showed photos of immigrant children being housed in federal facilities. Children were shown sleeping on the floor, some in cages, partially covered with foil blankets. Journalists, celebrities, activists and Democratic politicians seized on the photos as evidence of the Trump Administration's inhumanity:
But there was one tiny problem: The photos were from 2014.
Then the back peddling began.
Former Obama speechwriter Jon Favreau owned up to it, but still tried to spin it favorably for his former boss:
These awful pictures are from 2014, when the government's challenge was reconnecting unaccompanied minors who showed up at the border with family or a safe sponsor.
Today, in 2018, the government is CREATING unaccompanied minors by tearing them away from family at the border. https://t.co/Jgbbnq0djq
'-- Jon Favreau (@jonfavs) May 27, 2018
CNN reporter Hadas Gold deleted her first tweet, which she claimed showed the ''first photos of separated migrant children at holding facility.'' When Gold was corrected about the date, she tweeted:
Deleted previous tweet because gave impression of recent photos (they're from 2014)
'-- Hadas Gold (@Hadas_Gold) May 27, 2018
Jake Silverstein, editor of New York Times Magazine, also deleted his first tweet that called the photos ''disturbing'' and ''awful,'' blaming his family for the oversight but still managing to blame Trump:
Correction: this link, which was going around this morning, is from 2014. Still disturbing, of course, but only indirectly related to current situation. My bad (and a good reminder not to RT things while distracted w family on the weekend). https://t.co/zbM4I0woUF
'-- Jake Silverstein (@jakesilverstein) May 27, 2018
Antonio Villaraigosa, Democratic candidate for California governor, deleted his tweet that claimed he was ''speechless'' about the photos: ''This is not who we are as a nation.'' (Pssst. We are.)
Never one to miss a trolling opportunity, President Trump today called their bluff:
Democrats mistakenly tweet 2014 pictures from Obama's term showing children from the Border in steel cages. They thought it was recent pictures in order to make us look bad, but backfires. Dems must agree to Wall and new Border Protection for good of country'...Bipartisan Bill!
'-- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 29, 2018
Trump foes might be able to delete their tweets'--they can't delete facts and history. But it is fun to watch them try.
Julie Kelly is a senior contributor to American Greatness.
5 ways to protect your phone and information inside am - BBC News Pidgin
Thu, 31 May 2018 02:08
Image example Mobile phone na target for hackers wey wan thief information from inside am Nothing dey perfect for dis life, and dat one include di security wey dey on top our phone and computers dem. Manufacturers dey do dia part to protect dia customers but di main thing na say people need to find way to protect demsef from thief-thief people dem.
Apple wey bi one of the biggest IT company for di world, come out yesterday with solution for dia macOS High Sierra customers dem, after one Turkey security researcher discover easy way for anybodi to enter anoda person computer, even if dem no sabi di password.
Mobile phone don dey very popular and hackers no dey waste time to take advantage of any security problem wey dey on top am, begin thief ATM card/bank information, passwords for email, and even hack enter your social media account to control am.
Dis na top 5 things wey go help to protect your phone so that you no go wake up one morning to find say all your private Facebook photo don full social media blog everywhere.
Image copyright Thinkstock Image example Hacker fit dey anoda country dey enter your phone where you dey Update ya Software - Manufacturers dem know say some people no get two job - na just to find way to take spoil market for dem. So, from time to time, manufacturers go come out with small-small software wey customers need to install for dia phones to protect am more.
Most times, dis software (or firmware as some dey call am) dey come directly from di manufacturers and all you need to do na check dia website or go inside phone setting wey go allow dem to install am quick-quick.
But wait o...before you update, prepare enough internet data because e fit chop am small.
Image example Na 1.083 billion people dey use Facebook everyday Free WiFi - If you like to dey find free WiFi internet up and down so that you go fit download film to watch later, just know say bad people fit don use dat one enter your phone to do bad-bad things.
Di best thing na to avoid free internet as to dey carry join am fit expose your phone for hackers. Unless na person or company wey you trust dey share any WiFi with you.
Awoof dey turn belle!
Apps - Na Apps dey run everything you use on top your phone, from social media, to chat, to even di normal calling, but some apps dey wey person no even dey use.
Dis kind apps be big security risk since most people no dey update apps wey dem no too dey use.
Another important thing na to dey careful about di who do di app wey you wan download, especially if di app na new one, or if you notice say plenty people no dey use am.
Website - Like Apps, make you no dey enter anyhow website. Shine your eye well-well before you click website link and if your browser advice you say di website no dey safe, e better make you humble yourself and listen.
Afterall, di browser sabi di website pass you - na im work.
Image copyright Allan Gichigi Image example Plenty private information dey on top people phone now Password and Lock - Make e no dey tay before you change your phone password/PIN/pattern. To dey do am every three-three month no too much, especially if you get very fine phone wey people just like to dey touch.
And you fit set am so that if thief enter wrong password reach like 5 times, di phone fit erase all di information on top am.
Ambien maker to Roseanne: Racism is not a side effect of our drug
Thu, 31 May 2018 01:10
Ashley May | USA TODAY | 10:09 am EDT May 30, 2018
Sleeping drug Ambien can cause a host of side effects, but it's unlikely racism could be categorized as one, as Roseanne Barr claims.
Tuesday, the comedian wrote in a since-deleted tweet that "muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby=vj." The "vj" stood for Valerie Jarrett, an Obama White House aide. This led to the cancellation of her hit ABC show Roseanne, and an apology from the comedian, who said at one point she was "Ambien tweeting," in another social media post that has since been removed.
Sanofi, who makes Ambien, tweeted a response Wednesday morning: "While all pharmaceutical treatments have side effects, racism is not a known side effect of any Sanofi medication."
Dr. Rachel Salas, associate professor of Neurology in the Sleep Medicine Division at Johns Hopkins Medicine, said ''people could text or tweet while on Ambien and not remember.'' She advises people to avoid sleeping near their phone or electronics while taking sleep medication.
More: Roseanne Barr Ambien jokes are perking up Twitter
What's next? Racist tweet likely bars a 'Roseanne' revival elsewhere, even without her
Culture clash: Why Roseanne supporters forgive tweet and compare her to Bill Maher
Why do people take Ambien?
Ambien, also known as Zolpidem, is a sleep medication. People use it to treat insomnia.
What are some problems associated with the drug?
Barr isn't the first to blame the drug for disturbing behavior. Years ago, Sen. Robert F. Kennedy's daughter Kerry Kennedy blamed Ambien for a drugged-driving incident. Ambien was also one of the drugs found in Tiger Woods' system after police found him asleep in his car in the middle of a highway.
Other Ambien users have reported a variety of side effects, including sleepwalking, binge eating and even driving at night without realizing or remembering the incidents.
Janet Makinen, one of the lead plaintiffs in a 2006 class-action lawsuit against Ambien maker Sanofi-Aventis' U.S. division, alleged she ''ate hundreds of calories of food, including raw eggs, uncooked yellow rice, cans of vegetables, loaves of bread, bags of chips and bags of candy'' while on the medication, according to an amended complaint in the lawsuit filed in the Southern District of New York.
The lawsuit alleged that fellow plaintiff Christina Brothers, a financial analyst, remembers taking Ambien one night in May of 2005 and next waking up ''on the concrete floor of a jail cell,'' the complaint said. The parties agreed to a stipulated dismissal in 2007 because differences in factual issues and the women's injuries made it impossible for the case to be certified as a class-action lawsuit on behalf of other Ambien users.
What are the FDA's recommendations?
The Food and Drug Administration has expressed concern over how Ambien can impair activities (including driving), especially into the morning hours. For that reason, it has recommended the dose be lowered from 10 mg to 5 mg. "Patients with high levels of zolpidem can be impaired even if they feel fully awake," the FDA wrote in fact sheet about the medication.
More: Here's why Roseanne's supporters think her tweet was forgivable
More: 'Roseanne' cancellation: Valerie Jarrett, Hollywood react to ABC's decision
Side effects of Ambien include:
Nausea, vomiting, muscle cramps and/or diarrhea.
Abnormal thinking and changes in behavior: "Some of these changes may be characterized by decreased inhibition, similar to effects produced by alcohol," according to its FDA-approved labeling.
Hallucinations: "Visual and auditory hallucinations have been reported as well as behavioral changes such as bizarre behavior, agitation and depersonalization." Confusion, disorientation and aggression are also listed side effects, the label states.
The label also warns against a possible worsening of depression or suicidal thinking; impaired alertness and motor coordination and impaired vision also have been reported, according to the manufacturer.
Blackouts, where the person drove, had sex or ate while they thought they were asleep, can be associated with the drug, American Addiction Centers reports. The drug has been linked to amnesia in some case reports.
Kevin McCoy contributed to this report. Follow Ashley May on Twitter: @AshleyMayTweets
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Ivanka Trump Wins China Trademarks, Then Her Father Vows to Save ZTE - The New York Times
Wed, 30 May 2018 23:48
Ivanka Trump at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland in March. Her growing portfolio of trademarks in China raises questions about whether Chinese officials are giving the Trump family extra consideration that they otherwise might not get. Credit Tom Brenner/The New York Times BEIJING '-- China this month awarded Ivanka Trump seven new trademarks across a broad collection of businesses, including books, housewares and cushions.
At around the same time, President Trump vowed to find a way to prevent a major Chinese telecommunications company from going bust, even though the company has a history of violating American limits on doing business with countries like Iran and North Korea.
Coincidence? Well, probably.
Still, the remarkable timing is raising familiar questions about the Trump family's businesses and its patriarch's status as commander in chief. Even as Mr. Trump contends with Beijing on issues like security and trade, his family and the company that bears his name are trying to make money off their brand in China's flush and potentially promising market.
The most recent slew of trademarks appear to have been granted along the same timeline as Ms. Trump's previous requests, experts said. But more broadly, they said, Ms. Trump's growing portfolio of trademarks in China and the family's business interests there raises questions about whether Chinese officials are giving the Trump family extra consideration that they otherwise might not get.
These critics say the foreign governments that do business with Ms. Trump know they are dealing with the president's daughter '-- a person who also works in the White House.
''Some countries will no doubt see this as a way to curry favor with President Trump,'' wrote Fred Wertheimer, president of Democracy 21, and Norman Eisen, chairman of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, two nonprofit watchdog groups. Mr. Eisen's group reported on the trademarks on Saturday.
''Other countries may see the business requests made by his daughter's company as requests they cannot refuse.''
Ms. Trump's representatives have said that there is nothing improper about Ms. Trump's trademarks and that they prevent individuals from profiting off her name.
Abigail Klem, president of the Ivanka Trump brand, said in a statement on Monday that the brand's protection of trademarks was ''in the normal course of business,'' especially in countries where trademark infringement was rampant.
''We have recently seen a surge in trademark filings by unrelated third parties trying to capitalize on the name,'' Ms. Klem said, ''and it is our responsibility to diligently protect our trademark.''
Chinese trademark officials didn't respond to a request for comment on Monday.
Mr. Trump said in a surprise announcement on May 13 that he was working with China's president, Xi Jinping, to save jobs at the Chinese telecommunications company, ZTE. The company was left paralyzed after American officials forbade companies in the United States from selling their chips, software and other goods to ZTE for violating trade controls. Mr. Trump's announcement was widely seen as a potential peace offering to Beijing as the United States and China threatened each other with tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars worth of trade.
Just before and after that announcement, Ms. Trump won some long-sought trademarks covering her name in China.
Six days before the ZTE announcement, China said it approved five of Ms. Trump's trademarks, according to data from China's trademark office. Then, on May 21, China awarded Ms. Trump two more trademarks in snacks, spices and bleaching preparations. In total, Ms. Trump now has 34 trademarks in China that would allow her to capitalize on her brand in the world's second-largest economy.
Experts said the timing appeared to be a coincidence, given how quickly Ms. Trump won her previous trademark requests from the Chinese authorities, though they differed on whether she appeared to receive special treatment.
Ms. Trump applied for six of the trademarks in March 2017. She applied for the seventh even earlier, in May 2016. China's trademark office usually takes up to 18 months to approve trademarks, said Charles Feng, head of the intellectual property division at the law firm East & Concord Partners.
''From application to registration, this is very fast,'' he said.
Laura Young, a trademark lawyer at Wang & Wang, said she did not see anything unusual about the timing. She pointed out that under Chinese law, the trademark office should complete its examination of a filing within nine months, and that some of her clients get decisions within a year.
Still, Ms. Trump's fame is likely to have helped her with the trademark approval process in China, according to Ms. Young. The president's daughter has a large following in China, where she is lauded by many for her appearance and wealth. Videos of Ms. Trump's daughter, Arabella, singing Chinese songs have gone viral.
''When a person is famous, and the examiners say: 'Oh, I've heard of this person,' it can be decided more quickly than if the examiner is not sure and has to consult others or go to a committee,'' Ms. Young said.
Mr. Trump himself has more than 100 trademarks in China. Several United States senators have criticized these trademarks, warning it could be a breach of the United States Constitution and that foreign governments could use Mr. Trump's trademarks to influence foreign policy decisions. Mr. Trump has said he has handed over control of his business to his two adult sons. The Trump Organization has said it has been actively enforcing its intellectual property rights in China for more than a decade to protect its brand from infringers.
China's infamous ''trademark squatters'' '-- people who register the names of famous brands and people and ''squat'' on them in the hopes that they can cash in on it '-- have flocked to the Trump brand. According to Mr. Feng, there are more than 10 Ivanka trademarks registered by parties not related to Ms. Trump.
Some of these include a company in the southern city of Foshan, which has registered ''Yiwanka,'' the Chinese translation of Ivanka, for sanitary pads and tampons. The Nanjing Good Daughter Wine Company, an alcohol maker, has registered Ivanka Trump in English and Chinese.
The trademarks are not the only Trump-related deal that took place around the time of Mr. Trump's pledge to save ZTE.
On May 15, an Indonesian company called MNC Group, which is partnering with the Trump Organization to build a six-star hotel and golf course in Indonesia, said it had struck a deal with an arm of the Metallurgical Corporation of China, a state-owned construction company, to build a theme park next door to the planned Trump properties. MNC has said that the hotel and the theme park are separate projects within the same development.
Elsie Chen contributed research.
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Boeing wins patent on uninterruptible autopilot system | Homeland Security Newswire
Wed, 30 May 2018 14:23
Published 4 December 2006New technology can be activated by the pilots, government agencies, even on-board sensors; not even a tortured pilot can give up control; dedicated electrical circuits ensure the system's total independence
Although airplane cockpit door locks are now standard, worries remain about terrorists taking control of a plane a la 9/11, perhaps by extorting the pilots into opening the door against their better judgement. Elsewhere in today's issue we report on a new Raytheon contract to develop software that uses type of craft, location, and fuel capacity to determine the safest route for a hijacked or otherwise compromised aircraft. This is a great idea, one that must have Chicago, Illinois-based Boeing excited '-- not out of envy but because it improves the value of its recently awarded patent for a system that, once activated, takes control of the airplane away from the pilots and flies it to a predtermined landing position. Put the Raytheon and the Boeing systems together '-- now that's a good idea.
Boeing's is, of course, not the first autopilot technology in existence, but this one has been designed with counterterrorism first and foremost in mind. Not only is it ''uninterruptible'' '-- so that even a tortured pilot cannot turn it off '-- but it can be activated remotely via radio or satellite by government agencies. The system might even include senors on the cockpit door that activate the autopilot of a certain amount of force is used against it. ''There is a need for a technique that ensures the continuation of the desired path of travel of a vehicle by removing any type of human decision process that may be influenced by the circumstances of the situation, including threats or further violence onboard the vehicle,'' the patent application explains. To make it fully independent, the system also has its own power supply, independent of the aircraft's circuit breakers.
-read more in John Croft's Flight Global report
De Beers admits defeat over man-made diamonds
Wed, 30 May 2018 05:38
The world's largest diamond miner is doing the unthinkable: Selling stones produced in a laboratory. De Beers launched a new jewelry brand on Tuesday that features synthetic diamonds, a major reversal for a company that had implored consumers to stick with "real" stones.
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"Lightbox will transform the lab-grown diamond sector by offering consumers a lab-grown product they have told us they want but aren't getting: affordable fashion jewelry that may not be forever, but is perfect for right now," said De Beers CEO Bruce Cleaver.
Jewelry from the brand will go on sale in September. De Beers said prices will start at $200 for a quarter carat, and increase to $800 for a full carat stone. The company's natural stones start at roughly 10 times that amount, depending on their clarity and other attributes.
De Beers had been an outspoken critic of synthetic diamonds. Company executives vowed never to sell artificial stones, and it participated in the diamond industry's "real is rare" campaign. It even developed a machine that spots lab-grown stones.
"De Beers' focus is on natural diamonds," Simon Lawson, the current head of research and development at De Beers, told Bloomberg in 2015. "We would not do anything that would cannibalize that industry."
The diamonds are made artificially in a lab. Related: Huge 'peace diamond' fetches a disappointing $6.5 million
Synthetic diamonds, which can be produced in about 500 hours, share the same physical, chemical and optical characteristics as natural stones. But they are not nearly as valuable.
De Beers has produced synthetic diamonds for years through a subsidiary called Element Six, but it has limited their use to industrial applications.
The new synthetic diamonds will come in pink, blue and white, and the stones will contain a tiny Lightbox logo. De Beers said the logo won't be visible to the naked eye, but it will make the stones easily identifiable as lab-grown.
De Beers said it would invest $94 million over four years to build a new synthetic diamond production facility near Portland, Oregon.
CNNMoney (London) First published May 29, 2018: 9:59 AM ET
UN knew of sex-for-food scandal at top charities | News | The Times
Wed, 30 May 2018 04:13
Times Investigation
Leaked report highlights decades of failures
Sean O'Neill, Chief Reporter
May 29 2018, 12:01am, The Times
Ruud Lubbers, who was the UN high commissioner for refugees, said that ''concrete evidence'' was ''scarce''Mian Khursheed/ReutersMore than a dozen international aid organisations are implicated in a sex-for-food scandal documented by an official United Nations report that has never been published.
The Times has obtained a copy of the 84-page document produced by research teams working in refugee camps in west Africa for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and Save the Children in 2001. It identified more than 40 aid organisations ''whose workers are alleged to be in sexually exploitative relationships with refugee children''.
Many were small local charities but the list included 15 international organisations including the UNHCR and the World Food Programme and the British charities Save the Children and Merlin. International NGOs including M(C)decins Sans Fronti¨res, Care International, the International Rescue Committee, the International Federation'...
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FBI Agent Who Quit Over 'Rigged' Clinton Case To Testify; Drops BOMB On Comey, Obama
Wed, 30 May 2018 04:10
An FBI agent who quit his top position over the bureau's handling of the Hillary Clinton email investigation is heading to Congress to testify.
According to The Hill, John Giacalone, who led the Clinton investigation for the first seven months, will reportedly expose former President Barack Obama and fired FBI Director James Comey for allowing Clinton to skirt charges.
The joint investigation, which is being led by Republican Reps. Bob Goodlatte of Virginia and Trey Gowdy of South Carolina, have laid the groundwork for Congress to finally hold the failed Democratic presidential nominee accountable for breaking the law.
Judiciary & Oversight has scheduled 3 witness interviews for June: Bill Priestap, assistant director of FBI's counterintelligence division, Michael Steinbach, former head of FBI's national security division, & John Giacalone, retired FBI Senior Agent. https://t.co/Qaqiw2DaZv
'-- áá'ᎥsᏟᎥᏞᏞᎪ's ᏉᎥᎬáŽ" '¸ (@PriscillasView) May 25, 2018
In addition to Giacalone, Bill Priestap, assistant director of the FBI's counterintelligence division and Michael Steinbach, the former chief of the FBI's national security department and the individual who succeeded Giacalone, will also testify.
All three men served in top positions at the FBI and were deeply connected to the Clinton email investigation. However, the real headliner here is Giacalone for his proximity to Comey and others involved in the decision to let Clinton evade charges.
Comey admitted in mid-2016 that dozens of classified materials and documents were sent and received by Clinton on her private email server, which was hidden in the basement of her home.
That's illegal, and Comey admitted she broke the law. She then acid washed and used Bleachbit to wipe her server clean after she received a subpoena from Congress to preserve the materials. That's also a felony.
Why wasn't she charged? Why wasn't a grand jury impaneled? Why were there no indictments for her cronies and allies who also mishandled classified information and used hammers to destroy evidence?
Giacalone was reportedly so stunned and upset by Comey's decision to allow Clinton to get away with her crimes that he quit the bureau after nearly two dozens years of service to the country.
Interesting, looks like they are preparing to peel back the curtain. The rumor is that John Giacalone was pushed into retiring because he wanted to do a serious investigation of Hillary's emails. Bill Priestap was circled by the FBI conspirators. https://t.co/TbzWtyETuf
'-- DawsonSField (@DawsonSField) May 24, 2018
"John Giacalone was a proud FBI agent and for the first 7 months of the Hillary investigation, he was in charge of it. He resigned after it became clear that'... https://t.co/oakXMMDtd0
'-- Robert Zipfel (@RobertZipfel) May 25, 2018
It's unclear why Comey admitted Clinton broke the law and then gave her a huge pass for her corrupt actions. Was Comey advised by Obama to let Clinton go because they believed she would win the presidency?
Would a Clinton indictment expose that Obama could have been calling the shots behind the scenes?
This could be the tip of the iceberg that exposes how far Obama, Comey, and others went to protect Clinton during the election.
Follow Martin on Facebook.
US governor resigns amid sex scandal, finance probe
Wed, 30 May 2018 04:05
Chicago (AFP) - Missouri Governor Eric Greitens -- once a rising Republican political star -- resigned Tuesday amid expanding investigations of a sex scandal and potential violations of campaign finance laws.
It was a stunning fall from grace for the military veteran and Rhodes scholar once rumored to be considering an eventual run for the presidency.
The Midwestern US state's legislature, controlled by the governor's own party, was in the midst of a special session to consider whether Greitens should be impeached, when the governor announced his resignation would be effective Friday evening.
"This ordeal has been designed to cause an incredible amount of strain on my family," said the defiant governor, who had repeatedly called the investigations against him a "witch hunt," borrowing a favorite phrase of President Donald Trump.
"I have not broken any laws or committed any offense worthy of this treatment," he added at a brief news conference, at one point clearly holding back tears.
Greitens's troubles had mushroomed over revelations of a 2015 extra-marital affair and charges, which he vehemently disputed, that he attempted to blackmail his mistress into silence with a compromising semi-nude photo.
The state legislature's investigation had expanded to probe potential campaign finance violations, as questions swirled about whether the governor's campaign illegally coordinated with a non-profit organization to conceal the identity of political donors.
The governor's decision came after a judge compelled Greitens to release information about A New Missouri and any communications or coordination between the group and his own campaign fund, according to the St Louis Post-Dispatch newspaper.
A former Greitens campaign adviser also told a state House investigative committee that the campaign had considered soliciting donations from foreign nationals, according to the newspaper.
- 'No end in sight' -
The former US Navy SEAL and nonprofit founder, who swept into power in the 2016 election, had alienated many in the Midwestern state's political establishment by casting himself as an outsider and criticizing lawmakers of both parties who disagreed with him.
The 44-year-old married governor was hobbled when an extramarital affair from two years ago became public in January, including allegations that he attempted to coerce his mistress into silence.
Greitens's mistress, who has not been publicly identified, claimed that he took a photo of her partially nude, bound and blindfolded, without her permission, and threatened to release the photo if the affair became public.
An investigation by a bipartisan state legislative committee found the woman credible, and released a report laying out her allegations in great detail.
While admitting to the extramarital affair, Greitens insisted his failings were personal and did not rise to the level of a criminal offense.
He claimed the allegations, and subsequent investigations, were the result of entrenched forces wanting to cripple him politically. Greitens repeated that claim Tuesday.
"It's clear for the forces that oppose us there's no end in sight. I cannot allow those forces to continue to cause pain and difficulty to the people that I love," the governor said.
Gowdy: FBI acted properly with use of informant during 2016 campaign | TheHill
Wed, 30 May 2018 03:57
House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Trey Gowdy Harold (Trey) Watson GowdyWhite House lawyer's presence at FBI meetings sets off alarm bells for Dems Dems after briefing: 'No evidence' spy placed in Trump campaign House GOP sets three FBI interviews in Clinton probe MORE (R-S.C.) said Tuesday he believes the FBI acted properly with its use of an informant to speak with several members of President Trump Donald John TrumpUS pauses new North Korea sanctions as officials try to reset summit: report Garrett reverses, will not seek reelection amid battle with alcoholism Trump mocks Dem lawmaker for introducing bill to repeal GOP tax cuts MORE 's 2016 campaign.
"I am even more convinced that the FBI did exactly what my fellow citizens would want them to do when they got the information they got, and that it has nothing to do with Donald Trump," Gowdy said on Fox News's "The Story."
.@TGowdySC: "I am even more convinced that the FBI did exactly what my fellow citizens would want them to do when they got the information they got, and that it has nothing to do with @realDonaldTrump." #TheStory pic.twitter.com/hD35CyMzx4
'-- Fox News (@FoxNews) May 29, 2018Gowdy's remarks come after he and other key lawmakers met with FBI Director Christopher Wray and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein Rod Jay RosensteinGiuliani rails against Mueller probe Giuliani insists Trump won't fire people to end Mueller probe There is no justice in undermining the special counsel investigation MORE last week to discuss the Russia probe as well as an FBI informant's contact with several Trump campaign advisers during the 2016 presidential election.
The Oversight Committee chairman said Wray and Rosenstein made it clear that the president was not the target of the department's investigation.
"Chris Wray and Rod Rosenstein have at least made it clear to us Donald Trump was never the target of the investigation, he's not the current target of the investigation. Now, keep in mind, that can all change depending on what a witness says, but as of now, I think Chris Wray and Rod Rosenstein are stunned whenever people think Trump is the target of their investigation," Gowdy said.
Trump has claimed in a series of tweets without evidence that the FBI planted a mole in his campaign and sought to spy on his team for political purposes, claims that have been panned by critics.
Immigrant children separated from families are not the ones supposedly lost.
Wed, 30 May 2018 03:46
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Separating Kids at Border: The Truth | National Review
Wed, 30 May 2018 03:45
U.S. Border Patrol agents with illegal immigrants at the U.S.-Mexico border near McAllen, Texas, May 9, 2018.(Loren Elliott/Reuters) Some economic migrants are using children as chits, but the problem is fixable '-- if Congress acts. T he latest furor over Trump immigration policy involves the separation of children from parents at the border.
As usual, the outrage obscures more than it illuminates, so it's worth walking through what's happening here.
For the longest time, illegal immigration was driven by single males from Mexico. Over the last decade, the flow has shifted to women, children, and family units from Central America. This poses challenges we haven't confronted before and has made what once were relatively minor wrinkles in the law loom very large.
The Trump administration isn't changing the rules that pertain to separating an adult from the child. Those remain the same. Separation happens only if officials find that the adult is falsely claiming to be the child's parent, or is a threat to the child, or is put into criminal proceedings.
It's the last that is operative here. The past practice had been to give a free pass to an adult who is part of a family unit. The new Trump policy is to prosecute all adults. The idea is to send a signal that we are serious about our laws and to create a deterrent against re-entry. (Illegal entry is a misdemeanor, illegal re-entry a felony.)
When a migrant is prosecuted for illegal entry, he or she is taken into custody by the U.S. Marshals. In no circumstance anywhere in the U.S. do the marshals care for the children of people they take into custody. The child is taken into the custody of HHS, who cares for them at temporary shelters.
The criminal proceedings are exceptionally short, assuming there is no aggravating factor such as a prior illegal entity or another crime. The migrants generally plead guilty, and they are then sentenced to time served, typically all in the same day, although practices vary along the border. After this, they are returned to the custody of ICE.
If the adult then wants to go home, in keeping with the expedited order of removal that is issued as a matter of course, it's relatively simple. The adult should be reunited quickly with his or her child, and the family returned home as a unit. In this scenario, there's only a very brief separation.
Where it becomes much more of an issue is if the adult files an asylum claim. In that scenario, the adults are almost certainly going to be detained longer than the government is allowed to hold their children.
That's because of something called the Flores Consent Decree from 1997. It says that unaccompanied children can be held only 20 days. A ruling by the Ninth Circuit extended this 20-day limit to children who come as part of family units. So even if we want to hold a family unit together, we are forbidden from doing so.
The clock ticking on the time the government can hold a child will almost always run out before an asylum claim is settled. The migrant is allowed ten days to seek an attorney, and there may be continuances or other complications.
This creates the choice of either releasing the adults and children together into the country pending the ajudication of the asylum claim, or holding the adults and releasing the children. If the adult is held, HHS places the child with a responsible party in the U.S., ideally a relative (migrants are likely to have family and friends here).
Even if Flores didn't exist, the government would be very constrained in how many family units it can accommodate. ICE has only about 3,000 family spaces in shelters. It is also limited in its overall space at the border, which is overwhelmed by the ongoing influx. This means that '-- whatever the Trump administration would prefer to do '-- many adults are still swiftly released.
Why try to hold adults at all? First of all, if an asylum-seeker is detained, it means that the claim goes through the process much more quickly, a couple of months or less rather than years. Second, if an adult is released while the claim is pending, the chances of ever finding that person again once he or she is in the country are dicey, to say the least. It is tantamount to allowing the migrant to live here, no matter what the merits of the case.
A few points about all this:
1) Family units can go home quickly. The option that both honors our laws and keeps family units together is a swift return home after prosecution. But immigrant advocates hate it because they want the migrants to stay in the United States. How you view this question will depend a lot on how you view the motivation of the migrants (and how seriously you take our laws and our border).
2) There's a better way to claim asylum. Every indication is that the migrant flow to the United States is discretionary. It nearly dried up at the beginning of the Trump administration when migrants believed that they had no chance of getting into the United States. Now, it is going in earnest again because the message got out that, despite the rhetoric, the policy at the border hasn't changed. This strongly suggests that the flow overwhelmingly consists of economic migrants who would prefer to live in the United States, rather than victims of persecution in their home country who have no option but to get out.
Children should not be making this journey that is fraught with peril. But there is now a premium on bringing children because of how we have handled these cases.
Even if a migrant does have a credible fear of persecution, there is a legitimate way to pursue that claim, and it does not involve entering the United States illegally. First, such people should make their asylum claim in the first country where they feel safe, i.e., Mexico or some other country they are traversing to get here. Second, if for some reason they are threatened everywhere but the United States, they should show up at a port of entry and make their claim there rather than crossing the border illegally.
3) There is a significant moral cost to not enforcing the border. There is obviously a moral cost to separating a parent from a child and almost everyone would prefer not to do it. But, under current policy and with the current resources, the only practical alternative is letting family units who show up at the border live in the country for the duration. Not only does this make a mockery of our laws, it creates an incentive for people to keep bringing children with them.
Needless to say, children should not be making this journey that is fraught with peril. But there is now a premium on bringing children because of how we have handled these cases. They are considered chits.
In April, the New York Times reported:
Some migrants have admitted they brought their children not only to remove them from danger in such places as Central America and Africa, but because they believed it would cause the authorities to release them from custody sooner.
Others have admitted to posing falsely with children who are not their own, and Border Patrol officials say that such instances of fraud are increasing.
According to azcentral.com, it is ''common to have parents entrust their children to a smuggler as a favor or for profit.''
If someone is determined to come here illegally, the decent and safest thing would be to leave the child at home with a relative and send money back home. Because we favor family units over single adults, we are creating an incentive to do the opposite and use children to cut deals with smugglers.
4) Congress can fix this. Congress can change the rules so the Flores consent decree will no longer apply, and it can appropriate more money for family shelters at the border. This is an obvious thing to do that would eliminate the tension between enforcing our laws and keeping family units together. The Trump administration is throwing as many resources as it can at the border to expedite the process, and it desperately wants the Flores consent decree reversed. Despite some mixed messages, if the administration had its druthers, family units would be kept together and their cases settled quickly.
The missing piece here is Congress, but little outrage will be directed at it, and probably nothing will be done. And so our perverse system will remain in place and the crisis at the border will rumble on.
Now Streaming: 'Corporate.FM' Clearly Explains the Decline of Commercial Radio - Radio Survivor
Wed, 30 May 2018 03:31
''The radio industry'... is an example of an industry that was doing pretty well, and they gutted it.''
The ''they'' is the private equity industry, which provided the financing to companies like Clear Channel (iHeartRadio) and Cumulus to go on the epic buying sprees that resulted in today's enormously consolidated commercial radio landscape. Investigative reporter Josh Korman explains how this happened in the documentary ''Corporate.FM.''
The film debuted six years ago at the Kansas City Film Festival, when Jennifer Waits also interviewed director Kevin McKinney for Radio Survivor. The film had been in the back of my mind when I noticed that it was available for streaming on Amazon Prime. So, of course, I sat down to watch it.
Kinney told Jennifer that, ''The film is about the downfall of commercial FM. I believe that community radio, college radio and even NPR do not fill the void that was left when we lost commercial radio as a medium to support the community, because these stations do not have the same audience.''
It the opening sequence, ''Commercial.FM'' lays out its raison d'ªtre: ''The power of radio is that our neighbors are listening to it at the same time, and together we create a critical mass of support at the local level.''
The film vividly illustrates this point, and how its promise has been mortgaged, through the voices and experience of people who work, or have worked, in the industry. Kinney spotlights talent from Kansas City, Lawrence, Kansas, and San Diego, all of whom have been affected by industry consolidation. Their stories are further illuminated by experts like journalist Eric Boehlert and Prof. Robert McChesney, who have researched and documented media consolidation.
Though I think it's a perspective that deserves airing, I have to admit that going in I was expecting ''Corporate.FM'' to focus primarily on the cultural aspects of commercial radio's decline, of how local DJs who would play local bands got replaced by nationalized playlists and voice tracking. It's important to recognize this effect, but it's also very well tread ground.
Instead, I was impressed at how effectively the film tells the political economic story that's at the root of these changes. In very clear terms it lays out how ownership deregulation '' in the form of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 '' legalized and incentivized massive corporate buyouts leveraged with debt. These deals generated windfall profits in the short term, and enriched bankers and executives in the long term, at the expense of hundreds of jobs, the death of localism and the 20-year blood-letting of an entire industry. It does this without getting lost in jargon, or just boring the viewer to death.
As one commentator says in the first three minutes of the documentary, ''The internet didn't kill radio. The commercial radio industry is killing itself.''
''Corporate.FM'' makes that case solidly.
If you have Amazon Prime it's a must-see. If you don't, it's also available for rent or purchase, and I'd say it's well worth the $1.99 rental, even if you think you know the story. Seriously, it's a story I've been following for 22 years (and I'm kind of a cynical old bastard, too), and I found a lot to like and learn in ''Corporate.FM.''
Watch the trailer:
About Paul RiismandelPaul Riismandel is co-founder and operations director of Radio Survivor. He is also the podcasting evangelist for Midroll Media, serving as producer for The Wolf Den podcast. Paul has more than 20 years of experience in non-commercial radio and instructional media. He is a contributing editor for Streaming Media Magazine, covering the education beat.
Subscribe & ConnectSubscribe to the free weekly Radio Survivor Bulletin:
Consolidation, Corporate FM, documentary, featured, Kevin McKinney, ownership
London cyclists too white, male and middle class, says capital's cycling chief in vow to tackle diversity 'problem' | The Independent
Wed, 30 May 2018 03:23
Too few women and people from ethnic minority groups cycle in London and more must be done to promote diversity among a largely white, male and middle class biking community, the city's walking and cycling commissioner has said.
Grand schemes, such as the Cycle Superhighway network of partially-segregated routes linking the suburbs with the centre, are too often perceived as simply a way of getting ''middle-aged men cycling faster around the city'', Will Norman acknowledged.
He said he was considering setting diversity targets for London's cycling population to ensure progress was achieved.
Black, Asian and minority ethnic groups account for about 15 per cent of the city's cycle trips '' around two-thirds less than Transport for London estimates it could be.
Speaking to The Independent, Mr Norman, whose job it is to deliver on Sadiq Khan's pledge to make walking and cycling safer and easier in the capital, said: ''There is a problem with cycling and the way it is perceived of getting middle-aged men cycling faster around the city, which is not the objective at all.
''It touches on something which is a real challenge for London cycling, which is diversity.''
Mr Norman, the capital's first cycling commissioner, said he wanted to tackle the ''gender divide'' among cyclists that had spawned the term middle-aged men in lycra '' or Mamils.
He added: ''Even when we have seen the growth in the number of cyclists, we haven't seen that diversity.
''There are a number of reasons for that. One is that safety is paramount for getting different people from different walks of life cycling: older people, younger people, those from different backgrounds.''
The mayor's office has unveiled a number of projects it says will begin to address a lack of diversity, including cycle training courses, grants for community groups who do not typically cycle and promoting electric bikes, as well as expanded cycle routes. On Quietway 1, a new route linking Waterloo with Greenwich, the proportion of women has risen from 29 per cent to 35 per cent.
Duncan Dollimore, road safety and legal campaigns officer at Cycling UK, backed the moves, saying authorities should be ''focusing on the barriers that deter people from cycling rather than existing cyclists''.
Mr Norman also responded to mounting criticism of Mr Khan's record on delivering cycling projects after nearly two years in City Hall, saying his boss had achieved more for London's cyclists than Boris Johnson had in his first six years in the job.
He said it was ''nonsense'' to suggest the Labour mayor was failing in his promise to make London a ''byword for cycling'' and said the city was on track to double the number of cyclists on the streets by 2026.
However, he admitted more needed to be done.
''Is it ambitious enough in the longer term? I think we need a higher level of change,'' he said.
''The target that we have set out in the mayor's transport strategy is over that 25 years we want to shift to 80 per cent of journeys to be walking, cycling or by public transport.
''That is a much more ambitious target and really is fundamentally rethinking the way that we move around our city.''
Mr Khan has promised an average of £169m annually for cycling schemes over the next five years, tripling the length of the Cycle Superhighway network, and recently announced six new cycle routes.
That compares with an average yearly spend of £91m promised during the previous Tory mayoralty.
Critics, including the London Assembly's Transport Committee, have warned that Mr Khan is ''not acting quickly enough to build new cycling infrastructure, particularly new segregated cycling routes, even where there is public support for them''.
Concern about a lack of progress comes after the latest death of a cyclist who was hit by a lorry on a busy roundabout in Greenwich, southeast London.
As outlined in our Strategic Cycle Analysis we have ambitions to make this route safer for cyclists. We'll continue to work with the council '' who are responsible for the road '' to make this a reality. 2/2
'-- Will Norman (@willnorman) May 20, 2018That prompted the London Cycling Campaign to call on Mr Norman and Mr Khan to ''hurry up'' fixing the most dangerous locations in London for cycling.
Simon Munk, the group's infrastructure campaigner, said only a network of safe, comfortable cycle routes would see cycling's appeal broaden.
''The mayor just needs to crack on with making sure that network is there and is high-quality,'' he said. ''Each new main road cycle track and safe-feeling quiet route brings loads more people to cycling as one of the most convenient, healthy and safe ways to get around.''
Asked to address criticism the mayor had struggled to tackle stubbornly-high car use in the capital by shifting people onto two wheels, Mr Norman said: ''I think that is utter nonsense, there is an awful lot being delivered.
''We have done more in the first year-and-a-half of this administration than Boris did in his first six years. It seems odd that that is the way people are looking at it because it is not actually true when you look at the figures.''
The number of cyclists in London continues to rise '' reaching three times 2000 levels '' but at 2 per cent of all journeys, the city falls well short of others on the continent, including Berlin (13 per cent) and Paris (3 per cent).
Concern has also been raised about controversial plans for a new road tunnel given the green light by the mayor earlier this month.
The £1bn Silvertown Tunnel, which will be closed to cyclists and pedestrians, will worsen congestion and have a dire effect on the local environment, campaigners warn.
But Mr Norman defended the plan, saying that east London was badly served by cross-river connections. He also stressed a second, bike and foot bridge was planned to link Rotherhithe and Canary Wharf.
Following a successful ban on cars, taxis and lorries at the Bank interchange, which has led to a reduction in accidents and improved air quality, he said other junctions may soon see a similar overhaul.
''Where we can take out traffic, we will do, and there are a number of schemes which we are looking at from a design perspective,'' he said.
''The evidence I have seen shows there have been drastic reductions in the number of accidents in that area. It has improved speed for the buses. That approach of bus and bike only is certainly something I would be keen to look at [in other locations].''
Commenting on stalled plans to pedestrianise Oxford Street, he said he was ''confident'' a solution would be found by the end of the year.
And he said he supported the proliferation of dockless hire bikes, insisting they were helping to drive higher-than-ever rentals of the TfL-run Santander bike hire scheme.
Ruling out a TfL version of the dockless bikes, he said: ''There is an ecosystem of bike hire that is working well.
''I personally think they are great. If we can get more people cycling, particularly in some of the outer London boroughs where we don't have some of the resources to grow the Santander scheme, that is fantastic.
''But it has to be done in a way that works for all Londoners, so having those cluttering up the pavements is really not what we want. If that is done in a responsible way with good numbers then I think that is a very positive thing.''
He also defended the incoming deputy mayor for transport, Heidi Alexander, who stood down as an MP earlier this month.
Theresa May: Law could be changed so cyclists can be prosecuted for dangerous driving
Ms Alexander became an advocate for tougher penalties against dangerous cycling after her constituent, Matthew Briggs, lost his wife in an accident involving a cyclist using a bike with no front brakes.
Mr Norman said the former Labour MP for Lewisham East was an ''avid cyclist'' who was already ''talking about the things she would like to see in terms of cycling''.
More about: Cycling London Sadiq Khan Will Norman Transport Reuse content
Man decides to keep box of cables he's had since 2002 for another year | NewsThump
Tue, 29 May 2018 22:49
Monday 21 May 2018 by Davywavy
A man has looked at the box of cables he's had for more than fifteen years and decided to hang on to them.
The cables, which have lived under his desk since he put them there in 2002, might come in handy someday so there's no point using the space for something else.
Also in the box are a selection of storage media including a zip drive, several CDs and a bag full of floppy discs '' and you never know when you might need them.
''The thing about IT is that any component might go wrong, so this SCART connector from my old monitor could theoretically save my bacon one day,'' he told us.
''Assuming I ever own another CRT monitor, that is.''
Casting around for something to throw away so he could legitimately claim to have tidied up, he hit upon an old copy of Mechcommander Gold.
''I'll just install this for one last play through, and then I'll absolutely, definitely get rid of it'', he said.
How shopping centres are spying on you - Honey
Tue, 29 May 2018 22:41
We're used to sophisticated facial recognition technology at our nation's airports, but now, similar software is being used in major shopping centres to help advertisers fine-tune their pitch and convince consumers to hand over their money.
Digital billboards inside chains including Westfield have a discrete built-in camera which records you watching the advertisement. It then builds a profile of you, and is able to decipher your age, gender, socio-economic background, and even your mood.
Within seconds the digital board will show you an advertisement tailored specifically to you, and again record your response. The information is then sent and shared between advertisers.
New shopping centre advertising technology that is watching and tracking your movements. (Image: A Current Affair)
It's called Digital-outdoor Audience in Real Time (DART) and is the brainchild of advertising giant Val Morgan, which boasts it can ''anonymously track'' more than two million Australians every week.
Melbourne's Chadstone, DFO, and Emporium, as well as Sydney's Chatswood Chase are also able to collect movement data about everyone who walks through their doors.
Business is booming, as more shopping centres and service stations snap up this high-tech service.
WATCH: PART TWO (Post continues.)
The global market for this type of retail technology is expected to hit $1.6 billion dollars in 2020 - that's up from just $625 million in 2015.
It's led to criticism from privacy advocates, like Tim Norton, from Digital Rights Watch.
''The issue is it's happening without your consent,'' he told A Current Affair.
''It's happening in all these places which you assume are public spaces, they're actually privately owned.''
Experts also warn of free wifi on offer. (Image: A Current Affair)
Experts have also warned of accessing a shopping centre's ''free'' wifi, which could allow advertisers to track how long you spend in-store, and even access your browsing history.
''The idea of 'free', there's always something being transacted,'' Mr Norton said.
It's also handy to read the privacy terms and conditions on the individual shopping centre's websites, but it's important to know that just by entering, you are agreeing to their terms.
All centres using this technology state they comply with Australian privacy principles.
How They Plan to Control Everything In Your Life '' Patriots for Truth
Tue, 29 May 2018 22:17
You Will Be Completely Controlled '-- You Are Wetware '-- Implanted Devices and Mind Control Hijack You The video below gives you a great overview of the extensive article that you will read in this citizen intelligence report. Please share it with your social media network. .. Monstrous Patent Calls People ''Wet-ware''Implanted Devices Deliver Electric Shock, Poisons, Dopamine, Adrenaline, Emit Mind Control FrequenciesHewlett-Packard & Agilent Technologies Are Complicit CONTRIBUTING WRITERS | OPINION | AMERICANS FOR INNOVATION | JAN. 11, 2018, UPDATED JAN. 12, 2018 | PDF | https://tinyurl.com/y7rj2xfy
FIG. 1''RICHARD C. WALKER, AGILENT TECHNOLOGIES (Palo Alto, CA) holds monstrous ''Internet of Things'' patents that can take down planes with remote instructions to one little QRS-11 sensor in the autopilot system. .
The global surveillance grid includes embedded chips in planes, devices, equipment and people to remotely send signals and control every element of The Internet of Things network. The QRS-11 quartz rate sensor (the diameter of a quarter) is embedded in most aircraft autopilots.
The intelligence version of the sensor can be turned off remotely and bring down the plane. In the late 1980's and early 1990's, Hillary Clinton's Rose Law Firm in Little Rock, Arkansas was the original attorney representing the inventor of the QRS-11 sensor in BEI Electronics/Technologies (US Pat. Nos. 3,974,428; 3,976,997; 4,628,298). This sensor was so critical to national security that the State Department fined Boeing $16 million for illegal exports. After many mergers and company sales, the rights to the QRS-11 went to France for a decade owned by Schneider Electric SA. Schneider sold the rights to a Barclays Bank client in London. The Rose Law Partner who hired Hillary, J. Joseph Giroiri, served on the BEI Technologies board of directors. He also coordinated the Clinton's China and Indonesia banking connections associated with their Mena, Arkansas drug smuggling, money laundering and sex trafficking.
Barclays then sold the company and the QRS-11 patent rights to Sensata, Inc. which is controlled by Mitt Romney's Goldman Sachs-aligned Bain Capital in Boston. Tellingly, dozens of former Clinton staff have died in mysterious airplane and vehicle crashes. Also telling, the late FBI Superstar Ted Gunderson, said in 2005 that Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVay had a bio chip surgically installed in him by Dr. Louis Jolyon ''Jolly'' West who led the rogue C.I.A.'s MKUltra mind control program.
Conveniently for Bill and Hillary, the Oklahoma City bombing destroyed the records of the FBI investigation on Janet Reno's WACO criminality. The bombing also killed former Clinton chief of security Alan G. Whicher. Four other Clinton's bodyguards (C. LeBleu/T., T. McKeaham,, R. Williams,, S. Willis) were shot in the head by a helicopter sniper at the illegal military siege of the Branch Davidian property in Waco, Texas (1993). Some call these deaths ''Arkancide'' since most everyone associated with the Clintons in Arkansas, except Larry Nichols, have died. Nichols produced The Clinton Chronicles (1994) to expose the Clinton devilish corruption.
What Americans for Innovation and American Intelligence Media researchers have just discovered is breathtaking, disgusting, astounding and monstrous. It is also shocking how far along the plan is. Amazingly, the Deep State shadow government, in its evident hubris, has fully disclosed their diabolical technology scheme for ''The Internet of Things'' in writing.
Their plan is to identify, tag, track and control literally everything on the planet. Their unquestioned plan is to embed micro-electronic control devices, either surgically or by injection, in every human being on the planet. To them, it's all about ''management of the world's resources'' including you. Walker Patent No. 6,965,816 Col. 118, Lns. 53-54.
Why would they publish these plans? They evidently believed that these documents would not surface until after they had seized control.
UNBELIEVABLY, YOU ARE JUST ''WET-WARE''These documents show that their authors have a total disdain for humanity. These define people as ''wet-ware.'' In this world view, a human is merely a silicon chip surrounded by a membrane of carbon and water.
These are the people who are planning to take over the world.
Read for yourself:
Here are two lines captured from the actual patent:
''PFN'' means Protected Primary Focal Node. ''TRAC'' means Trusted Remote Activity Controller.
The illustrations in Walker's patent are truly dystopian (a community or society that is undesirable and/or frightening)'--and they have been implemented! Their message is clear: ''you can run but you cannot hide.'' In this illustration, even the trees are watching you! Here is Figure 21 from Walker's patent.
Click image to enlarge
FIG. 3''U.S. Patent No. 6,965,816, Fig. 21.PATENTS ARE INTENTIONALLY ARCANE AND HARD TO UNDERSTANDFor example, ''inequitable conduct'' means fraud, ''prosecute'' means make filings, ''on-sale bar'' means sell an invention too soon, ''Markman'' handles technical definitions, ''pro hac vice'' means an out-of-state attorney, ''pro se'' means means represent yourself, and so on.
Patent lingo insulates the ''old boy'' club of patent lawyers and judges from We The People accountability. (Reference)
CATEGORIES OF INTELLECTUAL PROPERTYPatents are a form of intellectual property alongside trade secrets, copyrights, trademarks and trade dress. Here's a thumbnail tutorial.
Trade secrets are anything you do or think that is not publicly known that you have taken reasonable means to protect, like the way you solve a problem or build something.
Copyrights are your thoughts reduced to some medium like pen, paper, program or design, like books, artwork, type or manuscripts.
Trademarks are unique names, phrases and other expressions used in commerce and assigned to you in order to avoid confusion in your marketplace. For example, it would be confusing to have two companies in your state with the same names.
Trade dress is the sum total of the way something is designed, like the unique colors and style used in a franchised store design and product packaging.
Finally, patents are unique and ''nonobvious'' inventions, methods and designs. Patents do not have to be working to be patentable. They just have to be described well enough to be repeatable by a person of ''ordinary skill in the art.'' We'll describe what this means below.
PATENTS ARE UNIQUELY PROTECTED IN THE U.S. CONSTITUTIONPatents and copyrights are the only two property rights specifically protected by the U.S. Constitution, Article 1, Section 8, Clause 8. Indeed, the Founders protected inventors because new ideas are essential to creating new wealth. They also knew that innovations are fragile flowers that would otherwise be hijacked by greed, power and wealth if not protected.
Tragically, the patent system has been hijacked by many corrupt lawyers and judges who themselves steal from real inventors and grow rich in the process.
PATENTS ARE A PROPERTY DEED AND CONTRACTA patent is a contract and a property deed. The contract is between We The People and the inventor. We give the inventor twenty years to exploit his or her idea for the benefit of society and to be rewarded for sharing the invention with the public.
The patent document itself describes the innovation. It's like the ''four corners'' of a physical property deed (e.g., survey, terrain, frontage, roads, vegetation, water, drainage, utilities). Similarly, a patent describes an inventor's new idea in words and diagrams.
A patent must contain enough detail to enable a third party with ''ordinary skill in the art'' to replicate it . . . ostensibly for the benefit of society. The expectation is that third party will license the underlying patent in the process of adding value to it.
RICHARD WALKER'S PATENT COULD NOT WORK WITHOUT LEADER TECHNOLOGIES' SOCIAL NETWORKING INVENTION, SO THEY STOLE ITWalker has not licensed the invention of social networking from Leader Technologies. Instead, as this Walker patent reveals, they just stole it.
Here's the proof.
''Art'' means the field of the invention, like computer hardware, software, furniture, machinery, medical device, pharmaceutical, consumer product, office product, tool, manufacturing method, agricultural implement, vehicle type, etc.
The Patent Office uses the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) for the tens of thousands of ''art'' classifications. An inventor must describe his/her invention in enough detail so that one of ordinary skill in the patent classification being described can replicate it.
The Walker patent discussed below identified both U.S. and International industry classifications. See also ''How do I read a patent? '' the Front Page.''
A MONSTROUS FAMILY OF PATENTSU.S. Patent Number 6,965,816 Nov. 15, 2005''PFN/TRAC System FAA Upgrades For Accountable Remote and Robotics Control To Stop The Unauthorized Use of Aircraft and to Improve Equipment Management and Public Safety in Transportation.''
Patent enabling the Deep State to crash most any aircraft ClassificationDescription U.S. (U.S. Cl.) 701/16DATA PROCESSING: VEHICLES, NAVIGATION, AND RELATIVE LOCATION / With indication or control of landing 701/2DATA PROCESSING: VEHICLES, NAVIGATION, AND RELATIVE LOCATION, VEHICLE CONTROL, GUIDANCE, OPERATION, OR INDICATION, Remote control system 244/189AERONAUTICS AND ASTRONAUTICS, AIRCRAFT CONTROL, Automatic, Electric course control, By remote radio signal International (Int. Cl.) G06F 19/00Digital computing or data processing equipment or methods, specially adapted for specific applications (specially adapted for specific functions G06F 17/00; data processing systems or methods specially adapted for administrative, commercial, financial, managerial, supervisory or forecasting purposes G06Q; he althcare informatics G16H) [2018.01]G06F 7/00Methods or arrangements for p rocessing data by operating upon the order or content of the data handled (logic circuits H03K 19/00) [2006.01]TABLE. 1''RICHARD C. WALKER U.S. Patent Number 6,965,816 Nov. 15, 2005 Classifications.We recently uncovered U.S. Patent Number 6,965,816 (10.9 MB) awarded on Nov. 15, 2005 to the named sole inventor Richard C. Walker titled:
''PFN/TRAC System FAA Upgrades For Accountable Remote and Robotics Control To Stop The Unauthorized Use of Aircraft and to Improve Equipment Management and Public Safety in Transportation.''
While this patent focuses on aircraft, it is written so broadly as to encompass all kinds of equipment and devices, including people, defined as ''wet-ware.''
While the patent was issued on Nov. 15, 2005, it incorporates filings going all the way back to Dec. 2, 1996.
Most patents incorporate provisional patents and related technology upon which they rely. AFI and American Intelligence Media (AIM) researchers cataloged those claims for this patent below. Several critical pieces of information emerge.
First, these patents to remotely control vehicles started being filed within two months of the passage of the Economic Espionage Act of 1996 (EEA) during Bill Clinton's first term. The EEA was written by law professor James P. Chandler, III.
Robert Mueller, James Comey, Rod Rosenstein, Loretta Lynch, Eric Holder, Larry Summers were strategically positioned at the top of the Justice Department and Treasury. The patentee, Richard C. Walker, could have patented a ham sandwich had this group wanted it.
Second, the evident intent of the Walker patent was to illustrate the technology planned for control of everything'--The Internet of Things.
THIER JUSTIFICIATION: The benevolent control of vehicles and aircraft in hijack situations was merely the cover story for the development of a global surveillance grid on everyone and everything. Given the timing of these Walker filings (around 9/11), one is increasingly skeptical about who really caused 9/11.
Third, Robert S. Mueller's law firm, Wilmer Hale LLP, formerly Hale & Dorr LLP, drove Walker's filings. Mueller was sworn in as FBI director just seven days before 9/11. This clearly implicates Wilmer Hale in the treachery.
Fourth, the global data sharing platform described in the patent was not doable by the likes of IBM, Microsoft, Boeing, AT&T and Cisco. They were all behind the curve from an R&D perspective when the Internet emerged. For example, Bill Gates thought it was a fad. The telephone pager network that Walker described could not scale to the volumes required for such global communication.
James P. Chandler surely could not believe his luck, when, in early 2000, Michael McKibben of Leader Technologies was first introduced to him. Leader was looking for the best patent attorney in the country to protect its social networking innovations.
Chandler, on the other hand, needed a fix for the Deep State's ailing digital takeover master plan. He agreed immediately to be Leader's patent attorney. He then spent the next three years deceiving Leader until he was able to get his hands on the underlying engineering source code, which he immediately shuffled to the IBM Eclipse Foundation where DOJ's Eric Holder and IBM's David Kappos were waiting, along with Cisco, Microsoft, SAP, Oracle, Kleiner Perkins, Qualcomm, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan, AT&T and a host of other rogue C.I.A. providers.
Leader's source code was essential to building The Internet of Things, quickly.
The table below shows the patent filings included in the PFN/TRAC System FAA. The eventual patent focused on remote control of aircraft, but also subsumed control of vehicles, ships, equipment, commerce, education and people.
U.S. Patent Number 6,965,816 Nov. 15, 2005PFN/TRAC System FAA Upgrades For Accountable Remote and Robotics Control To Stop The Unauthorized Use of Aircraft and to Improve Equipment Management and Public Safety in Transportation.
Crash any aircraft, any vehicle, anytime, remotely Incorporated claims(i.e., ALL of these filings are included in this patent by reference)Filing Date:Filing#/Award:Title:Attorney/Firm:Dec. 02, 199660/032,217Real-Time Vehicle Recovery System Including Stop Box That Restricts Unauthorized Use of VehicleIrah DonnerLowe & PriceNov. 20, 199708/975,1406,157,317WO199824664
Secure Communication and Control System for Monitoring, Recording, Reporting and/or Restricting Unauthorized Use of VehicleIrah H. DonnerHale & DorrJan. 19, 199960/139,759WO2000078057Secure Accountable, Modular and Programmable Software ''TRAC'' for PFNS Processors, Controllers, and Computer Networks to Monitor, Manage, Store and Remotely Control Data and EquipmentIrah H. DonnerPepper HamiltonJun. 17, 199960/140,029Electrically Controlled Automated Devices to Operate, Slow, Guide, Stop and Secure Equipment and Machinery for the Purpose of Controlling Their Unsafe, Unattended, Unauthorized, Unlawful Hazardous and/or Legal Use, with Remote Control and Accountability WorldwideIrah H. DonnerPepper HamiltonJan. 19, 200060/176,818Protected Accountable Interfaces Termed PFNS with Secure Modular and Programmable Software Termed TRAC to Monitor, Manage, Store and Remotely Control and Data and Equipment for Everyday Use to Extremely Aggressive High Security ApplicationsIrah H. DonnerPepper HamiltonMay 01, 200060/200,872Personal PFN systems for accountable tracking remote management and aggressive control scenariosHenry N. WixonWilmer Hale LLPOct. 19, 200060/330,088Durable high barrier metallized polypropylene film [for embedded body electronics]Raj S. DaveMorrison & FoersterSep. 04, 2001Robert S. Mueller, III appointed by George Bush as FBI DirectorFormerHale & Dorr, Wilmer HaleOct. 01, 200160/325,538WO2003029922PFN/TAC system FAA upgrades for accountable remote and robotics control to stop the unauthorized use of aircraft and to improve equipment management and public safety in transportationIrah H. DonnerHale & DorrOct. 19, 200160/330,085WO2003029922PFN/TAC system FAA upgrades for accountable remote and robotics control to stop the unauthorized use of aircraft and to improve equipment management and public safety in transportationIrah H. DonnerHale & Dorr LLPOct. 01, 2002 Issued:Nov. 15, 200510/260,5256,965,816PFN/TRAC System FAA Upgrades For Accountable Remote and Robotics Control To Stop The Unauthorized Use of Aircraft and to Improve Equipment Management and Public Safety in TransportationIrah H. DonnerWilmer HaleMay 28, 200310/401,041Automated Accounting System that Values, Controls, Records and Bills the Uses of Equipment/Vehicles for SocietyIrah H. DonnerWilmer HaleOct. 28, 2003Oct. 28, 200460/514,83310/975,109National / international management and security system for responsible global resourcing through technical management to bridge cultural and economic disparityRichard C. Walker, pro seTABLE 2'--RICHARD C. WALKER. Patent filings incorporated into U.S. Patent No. 6,965,816.DID WALKER REALLY INVENT ALL THESE PATENTS?Walker is a geek scientist who has worked inside the bowels of Hewlett-Packard and Agilent Technologies his entire career.
We do not believe that Walker is the sole inventor. The sheer breadth of global policy perspectives incorporated in these documents shows a collective policy mind.
Our hunch is that they are derived from the illegal Highlands Group that has been secretly convened since late 1994 by the Department of Defense to begin coordinating the Deep State takeover of the Internet.
According to Walker's resume, he was a Principal Staff Scientist at Hewlett-Packard (HP) for twenty-one (21) years from Jan. 1981 to 2002. Since 2002 he has been a Senior R&D Electrical Engineer at Agilent Technologies, for whom he continues to file patents.
RICHARD C. WALKER ONLINE BIOGRAPHIESYearsCityOrganizationActivity1978-1981CaltechBS, Engineering and Applied Science1988-1992California State University-ChicoMS, Compter Science1981-1991Hewlett-Packard LaboratoriesTechnical Staff1981-2000Palo AltoHP LabsPrincipal Project Engineer1981-2001Palo AltoHewlett-PackardPrincipal Project Engineer1991-2003Palo AltoAgilent TechnologiesPrincipal Project Engineer1982-2004Palo AltoAgilent TechnologiesPrincipal Project Engineer2005-2012Palo AltoAdema TechnologiesConsultant2009-2015Palo AltoCorningConsulting Electrical Engineer2015-2016Palo AltoSpeck DesignConsulting Electrical Engineer2010-currentPalo AltoR&R Engineering LLCOwner2016-currentSanta ClaraAgilent TechnologiesSr. R&D Electrical EngineerTABLE 3''RICHARD C. WALKER BIOGRAPHIES. Sources: LinkedIn, ResearchGate. Walker has consistently failed to disclose his Kline & Walker, LLC company that claims ownership of this 170-page total global surveillance ''Internet of Things'' patent . . . even though he assigned the patent to Kline & Walker, LLC (a defunct company) on Nov. 15, 2005
1998 to (at least Nov. 15 2005)Potomac MDKline & Walker, LLCOwner & InventorTABLE 4''RICHARD C. WALKER, AKA RICK WALKER, Biography.Patent Office records show that at least until Nov. 15, 2005 when the patent was awarded, ''Kline & Walker LLC'' was still the owner or ''Assignee.'' This information alone shows ''fraud on the court'' or ''inequitable conduct'' since the official company records in both Maryland and Delaware show that Kline & Walker, LLC was long defunct for nonpayment of taxes, see below.
Remarkably, he does not show his employers, HP or Agilent Technologies, as the assignee, which is what one would normally expect to see from such a large volume of work. Corporations rarely'--almost never'--allow an employee to file for patents that are not assigned to the company.
State corporate records show that Kline & Walker LLC was formed in Delaware on Aug. 06, 1998, then 20 days later in Maryland on Aug. 26, 1998. These records also show that these companies did not pay any taxes and were both closed after the statutory waiting period.
Therefore, Kline & Walker LLC appears to be a faked company running interference for the true inventors (we think the Highlands Group). Such conduct, if true, is called ''inequitable conduct'' in patent law. Patents are not permitted to disguise material contributors.
AGILENT TECHNOLOGIES IS EVIDENTLY A DEEP STATE SURVEILLANCE SUPPLIERWalker's current employer, Agilient Technologies, was a spin off of HP that went public on Nov. 18, 1999. That was only a week after Bill Clinton and his Treasury Secretary Larry Summers abolished Glass-Steagall. Summer's chief of staff then was Sheryl K. Sandberg, the subsequent creator of Gmail (2004) and the current chief operating officer of Facebook (2008 to current). Another Summers employee then was Marne L. Levine. Levine who married disgraced C.I.A. director John M. Deutch's son, and is now chief operating officer at Instagram. Deutch was pardoned by Bill Clinton on the same day as Marc Rich. It's truly a cozy little world at the top of the criminal Internet of Things.
Agilent raised $2.1 billion and was the largest Silicon Valley public offering ever at that time. The usual globalist shadow government suspects were the Agilent underwriters: Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Credit Suisse, JPMorgan, etc. The insider trading is evident.
To put the Agilent Technologies / HP actions in context, on Jul. 14, 1999, President Bill Clinton formed the National Intellectual Property Assurance Council (NIAC) by Executive Order #13130 with James P. Chandler, III.
A few months later on Sep. 29, 1999, President Bill Clinton formed In-Q-Tel to run a rogue C.I.A. private venture capital company in Silicon Valley.
A few weeks later on Nov. 12, 1999, Bill Clinton and Larry Summers, Clinton's Treasury Secretary and Chandler's Harvard colleague, abolished Glass''Steagall market protections separating underwriting and banking.
Evidently, Agilent Technologies and HP are key suppliers to the Internet of Things.
HP & AGILENT ARE COMPLICITHere is a complete U.S. Patent Office list of the patents attributed to Richard C. Walker as the inventor. Eleven (11) are assigned to Hewlett-Packard and fourteen (14) are assigned to Agilent Technologies, Inc.
These patents are very evidently refinements of Walker's ''control everything'' patent. They are full of euphamisms (deceptions) to obscure the true censorship purpose.
Here's just one example:
WALKER PATENTED PREDATOR SPY GLASSESU.S. Pat. No. 6,735,328 filed on filed on Mar. 07, 2000 (soon after Agilent was founded), awarded May 11, 2004 and assigned to Agilent Technologies, Inc. is titled ''Personal viewing device with system for providing identification information to a connected system.''
Walker helped patent a system for spies to identify anyone or any thing (Internet of Things) by wearing his glasses as the viewing device (Read: You can run, but you cannot hide from Walker and his predator friends).
Click image to enlarge
FIG. 5''U.S. Pat. No. 6,735,328, Fig. 2. Mar. 07, 2000, awarded May 11, 2004 and assigned to Agilent Techologies, Inc. is titled ''Personal viewing device with system for providing identification information to a connected system.'' .
Click image to enlarge
FIG. 6''U.S. Patent No. 6,965,816, Fig. 1. .
THIS SYSTEM WAS PLANNED TO CONTROL THE GLOBAL ECONOMY''Socio-Economic and Environmental Technology Accounting System for Democratic Government''
This appears like a Soviet-style central government system.
Click image to enlarge
FIG. 7 '' U.S. Patent No. 6,965,816, re. Fig. 40 (''World Organization''). Incorporated by reference in multiple Walker applications, including U.S. Pat. App. No. 10/401,041, Fig. 2B , Automated Accounting System That Values Controls Records and Bills The Uses of Equipment Vehicles For Society. nnnn
FIG. 8''Boston and London Internet of Things pitchman Beecham Research has produced this cute little pastel illustration of the demonic takeover. .
CAN THIS TECHNOCRATIC TAKEOVER BE STOPPED? YES, BUT WE MUST START REMOVING THE SPYING TOOLS IMMEDIATELYDefund these criminals'--their corruptly-acquired power must be removed.
Stop the criminals who are responsible for this, which means we need to lock up Hillary and the others truly responsible.
Ask President Trump to pay Leader Technologies' Miller Act Notice. This generates hundreds of billions of dollars in new revenue for the federal government without raising taxes, among the many benefits. It will also help to start developing a true Free Press envisioned by the Founders and now lost to the globalists.
Notices: Unless marked otherwise, American Intelligence Media (AIM), Aim4Truth.org,and Patriots4Truth.org copyright claims are waived. Reproduction is permitted with or without attribution. This content and its links may contain opinion. As with all opinion, it should not be relied upon without independent verification. Think for yourself. Fair Use is relied upon for all content. For educational purposes only. No claims are made to the properties of third parties.Listen to Betsy and Thomas discuss this article: Meet Big Brother. The front man for government Big Brother has been identified and he holds the most disruptive patent ever facing civilization and human evolution. Listen to Thomas and Betsy explore the corrupt U.S. Patent Office and how it has laid the digital web over the entire planet. No one will be able to escape unless we act now to sever its hydra-head.
Former Navy Pilot Exposes Truth About MH-370 Disappearance '' Abel Danger
Tue, 29 May 2018 22:10
Source: The Millennium Report
My 27, 2018
Letter to Russian Ambassador also addresses the downing of MH-17:
Dear Ambassador Grigory Logvinov,
My name if Field McConnell. I have on 3 occasions sent critical information to Government of Russia regarding 3 aircraft incidents in last 6 years that were not accidents as represented by the media. Those 3 incidents were Sukhoi Superjet 9 May 2012, Metrojet A321 over Sinai on 10-31-15 and the Tu-154M that went down on 12-25-16 on departure from Sochi RF destined for Syria. Now, in May 2018, I note with great interest how several countries are demonstrating behaviour that indicates they are aware the Truth of MH370 is about to be shared on the world stage. I am releasing a video documentary ''WHERE DID MH370 GO'' at a conference yet this year 2018.
On the 8th of March 2014, MH370 was electronically commandeered over BITOD intersection and initially re-routed to a coordinate set in proximity to the Petronas Towers in Kaula Lumpur. A brief time later it was commandeered by a second entity and redirected west-north-west south of the Malayasian land mass, then on towards Maldives where it turned to the south for eventual safe landing at FJGD at 0651 local.
Boeing Honeywell Uninterruptible Autopilot
Attention DPA, As covered by 21st Century Wire : The Case of Malaysia's Missing Airliner MH370 '-- Part Two .
On Saturday, 22 March 2018, I was called by a representative of Malaysia's government who asked if I had created the YouTube above which illustrates the BOEING UNINTERRUPTIBLE AUTOPILOT that I exposed in December 2010 to FBI, FAA, U S Navy Intelligence, Northwest Airlines and most significantly ALPA (Air Line Pilots Association). This is 27 months AFTER I had filed Civil Case 1:08-1600 (RMC) titled FIELD MCCONNELL v. AIR LINE PILOTS ASSOCIATION .
Please go to The Millennium Report to read the entire letter to Russian Ambassador.________
Statement by the Ambassador of Russia to Australia Grigory Logvinov
WEEKEND AUSTRALIAN MAY 26-27, 2018 ' Page 2
* * * * * * * * *
Civil Case 1:08-1600 (RMC) titled FIELD MCCONNELL v. AIR LINE PILOTS ASSOCIATIONField McConnellN3572 CR SPlum City, WI, 54761
Peg Feurhelm, Clerk of Circuit Court ) Date: 28th Day of June, 2016
1. I, Field McConnell, having firsthand knowledge of the facts stated herein, and being competent in mind and body to testify, declare and affirm that the facts stated herein are true, correct, and complete in all material fact, not misrepresented and made under the penalties of perjury of the laws of The uNITED STATES and The State of Wisconsin.
''Notice to Agent is Notice to Principal, Notice to Principal is Notice to Agent''
1. It has not been my intention to communicate further regarding Pierce County Wisconsin Case No. 15FA178 however as a result of continuing aggression and assault against me and my property and in continuing an informed violation of the international Commercial Lien/writ of restraint/cease and desist order, SEC tracer #2640220, certain recent events must be documented.
2. I had previously been ''summoned'' under duress and threat of loss of property to a corporate court with which I have declined to contract and to whose proceedings I do not consent.
3. The date that the court for profit had identified unilaterally was a date where I had previous commitment in legal proceedings in both United Kingdom and Massachusetts relating to my work as Global Operations Director of Abel Danger Private Intelligence Agency.
4. The Plaintiff in this fraudulent divorce proceeding has claimed ignorance of my duties as Global Operations Director for Abel Danger Global Private Intelligence Agency. To help the Court understand the Truth I submit these 5 items of my efforts to enhance the safety of global travelers in time frame 4 December, 2006 until present day, 28 June, 2016. The Abel Danger Global Private Intelligence Agency will this day, 28 June, 2016, be posting a Threat Warning regarding an aviation threat to Hillary Clinton.
a) When Sukhoi Superjet was intentionally destroyed on 9 May, 2012 I explained it to Russia.
THURSDAY, MAY 17, 2012
McConnell/Sukhoi '' Letter To Mikhail Pogosyan, General Director, Sukhoi Aircraft Company
Captain Field McConnellN3572 CR SPlum City WI 54761United States of America
Mikhail Pogosyan, General DirectorSukhoi Aircraft Company23B Polikarpov StreetMoscow , 125284, Russia
Colonel Nikolay V. BlednykhRussian Embassy2650 Wisconsin Ave., NWWashington , DC 20007
13 May, 2012
Director Pogosyan,
My deepest sympathy for the loss of crew and passengers of the Superjet 100 in Indonesia.
I am a retired Delta Airlines pilot and retired USAF F4 and F16 pilot. I have 23,000 hours of incident free flying. I would like to speak with someone with authority to speak for Sukhoi and I would like to speak to the Sukhoi engineering/test pilot/safety personnel with a representative of the Russian Embassy in attendance.
My military career includes being deployed from NAS Keflavik in April, 1982 to intercept Soviet Bear and Badger bombers. My civilian career includes having a retired Bear pilot in my cockpit on a flight from TSE to SVO.
In addition to a 39 year flying career, I have also been an attentive student of aircraft crashes that involve both FADEC and Thales technologies. I feel strongly the the incident involving the Sukhoi Superjet bears the same 'footprint' as these incidents: Turkish 1951/AMS, Speedbird 38/LHR, Adam Air 574/Indonesia, Kenya 507/Cameroon, Air France 447/Atlantic, CF18/Lethbridge, Canada and F18/Oceana, Virginia.
If Sukhoi and the Russia Embassy see merit in my becoming a 'demonstration pilot' for Sukhoi internationally and especially in North America and Eurasia I would be most happy to prove to the world that your products are safe, efficient and reliable. I have included a link to a demonstration of the world's lowest jet-jet air refueling at bottom of page.
My flying background speaks for itself. More importantly is the true history that on March 2, 2007 I was forced to retire early from Delta ( then Northwest ) after I relayed safety sensitive information to FBI, FAA, Northwest Airlines and NoRAD. The safety information includes specific illegal modifications to Boeing/Airbus glass cockpit and FADEC/Thales equipped aircraft. I next flew in Kazakhstan for 18 months with copilots who were Kazakh or Russian. I have 3750 hours in command of A319/20/21 aircraft in addition to type ratings in CV580, DC9, DC10 and A330 aircraft.The Chief Pilot of the Astana Pilot Base is Captain Sergei Alexandrovich and he administered my last line check during my 18 months flying in Kazakhstan. If you contact him he can attest to 3 significant issues:
1) My being the first Air Astana pilot to score 100% on the English proficiency2) My saving an A320 from being destroyed on 13 December, 20083) My productivity and teamwork in that on my last day of flying for Air Astana I completed 5 segments when the current 'agreement' was 2 segments maximum per duty day.
In the United States some military pilots are becoming aware of some issues that I have raised in three federal lawsuits. Had those lawsuits been responded to appropriately, the Speedbird 38, Turkish 1951, Air France 447, CF18 and F18 incidents may well have been prevented.
I look forward to your response and am free to travel ( at no cost ) MSP-JFK-SVO or to Washington DC or any other major city in North America if your aircraft company, and Russia, see merit and value in having a person with my background demonstrating the quality and performance of the Sukhoi Superjet.
Best Regards,
Field McConnellRetired Captain/DeltaRetired Lt. Col/USAFN3572 CR SPlum City WI 54761USA+001 715 307 8222
b) When MH370 was remotely commandeered on 8 March 2012 Abel Danger published a YouTube video explaining how the aircraft was remotely controlled. The title of the video is BOEING UNINTERRUPTIBLE AUTO PILOT. When Malaysians interested in finding their jet saw our video I was contacted by representatives of Malaysian government and MAS '' the airline '' and asked to travel to Kuala Lumpur to explain the remote capture face to face. I traveled there and explained it to them:
'--''Original Message'--''
From: nightingale7@hughes.net
To: redact
Sent: Mon, Apr 21, 2014 7:35 pmSubject: Re: Urgent '' Latest On MH 370
Thanks so much for the update. I sure appreciate it. Whenever he ( Field McConnell ) can come on will be great. I'll have my producer contact Field. Thanks for all you do. Joyce.
On Apr 21, 2014, at 10:05 PM, redact8655@aol.com wrote:
It appears that Matthias Chang is incredibly busy but will contact you as soon as possible. He suggests that maybe you should interview Field McConnell first? Matthias and Field met together for a number of days until late night Saturday so Matthias has had little time to recover from the intense late night meetings each day. Matthias tells me that he believes they will discover what happened to the plane because he is getting an incredible response from the public in helping to uncover the truth. He believes a whistle blower will come forward with the evidence! We just need to keep getting the word out and letting people know that they can contact Matthias at his website.Thanks for your help,Redacted
Prior to traveling to Kuala Lumpur on 15 April, 2014 I advised Malaysia and MAS, in writing, on 29 March, 2014 that if they failed to expose BUAP and ATI they should expect a ''second explosive event'' no later than 1900 17 July, 2014. It occurred on 17 July, 2014 when MH17 was intentionally destroyed over Ukraine.
c) [Head of a major international airline has turned whistleblower on the MH370 government cover-up by criticizing the Australian government-led mission to locate the Malaysia Airlines flight and passengers and by throwing doubt on the entire official story. He believes the Boeing 777 was always under control but that officials have not been transparent about the whereabouts of it or its 239 passengers. '¨'¨
Emirates Airlines head Tim Clark has thrown doubt on the official line that the aircraft carrying 239 people when it disappeared in March, flew south on autopilot for five hours until it ran out of fuel and plummeted into the water.]
Attention CEO Tim Clark,
If you truly wish to unravel how MH370 arrived at FJDG at 0651 KL time I am willing to meet you in New York, Washington DC, Dubai or London to explain it to you face to face. On 9 March, the day after MH370 landed at FJDG Abel Danger Global Intel published a YouTube explaining MH370 [ boeing uninterruptible autopilot ] On March 29 I published a prediction to MAS that it may suffer another explosive event in the interim between the day of the warning and 1900, 17 July. I was asked to go to Malaysia and explain it to government and MAS personnel and I traveled from Minneapolis to Kuala Lumpur 15 April to 21 April. On 17 July I hosted a dinner at VINO IN THE VALLEY to celebrate VICTORY. MH17 went down in Ukraine 17 July just hours before our VICTORY PARTY. In June you, CEO Clark, solicited the public for information relating to MH370. Abel Danger answered you, directly, with a YouTube entitled [ Attention: Tim Clark of Emirates '' Five Critical Questions '' QRS11 '' Honeywell Embedded BHUAP ] On 2 October I posted a THREAT WINDOW for date range 02Oct14 to 1411 hours, 14-11-14. It is specific to A330-340-380 aircraft. Airbus Widebodies whose registration numbers do not begin with N or C are at risk. I will be sending a 66 page document to you Mr. Clark. Your global email addresses will receive it today by HIGH NOON, central time US. I am willing to meet you and your team anytime after 10/22 and before 1411, 14-11-14. If we do not meet and an Airbus Widebody goes down I will be making a ''simulator video'' to show the world what happened to MH370, MH17 and Sukhoi Superjet demo flight in Indonesia, May 2012.
I filed Civil Case 1:08-1600 (RMC) in September, 2008 and it was subject of an AGGRAVATED FRAUD UPON THE COURT and dismissed in January, 2011. I will be refiling the case SOMEDAY SOON, feel free to join the suit.
Field McConnell41 years of ATP safety+001 715 307 8222fieldmcc@yahoo.com@fieldmcc
d) When the Russian A321 was intentionally destroyed on 31 October, 2015 I was asked to be on a live radio show broadcast from UK to explain the destruction of the Metrojet Airliner over Sinai. I went on and explained it.
wrote:Hi Field! I hope you're well! Field, can you come on with me for 40 minutes today, Monday, at 4.10PM Eastern time? About the Russian plane crash?? It has false flag written all over it I believe. Can we Skype at that time?
Richie Allen
e) In what I believe was an assassination attempt on Donald Trump 3 February, 2016, FADEC appears to have played a part in the event that occurred on Trumps B757 causing it to divert into Nashville TN.
'--'' Forwarded Message '--''
From: Field Mcconnell
'¨To: ''redact@trumporg.com'' redactr@trumporg.com; ''generalredact@trump.com'' generalredact
Cc: ''redact@trump.com'' redact@trump.com; Michael Huerta michael.huerta@faa.gov; ''milwaukee@fbi.gov'' milwaukee@fbi.gov; Suzanne Lynn Kalfus ; Field McConnell fieldmcc@yahoo.com
'¨Sent: Thursday, February 4, 2016 12:14 PM
Subject: Remote control engine trouble
Donald J Trump Jr.:
On 31 July, 2015 at Blackbushe Airport in UK the bin Laden family members traveling to testify ( regards 9/11 and Osama bin Laden ) were killed in a Phenom 300 with an apparent combination of FADEC and BUAP remote manipulations. I am a 40+ year airline pilot who reported these illegal modifications to FAA and FBI on 10Dec06.
I filed Civil Case 1:08-1600 (RMC) in Washington DC District Court in September, 2008. It was dismissed in a FRAUD UPON THE COURT on 19 January, 2011 because it leads to 9/11 Truth.
Field McConnell715 307 8222
CC: FAA Administrator Huerta who is well aware; ALPA Attorney Suzanne Kalfus who is well aware
5. The loss of property referred to in #2 above that would result is $772,500 plus all additional expenses associated with this, my defense to this action as listed in other Affidavits of Truth including that dated 1-21-2016 regarding Pierce County Case 15FA178 which I believe should be dismissed for lack of jurisdiction and in conflict with Cease and Desist Order included in SEC tracer #2640220 which was delivered to Alison McConnell and her counsel of record, on 10 November, 2015 and hand delivered to Pierce County Clerk of Court Jamie Feuerhelm '' jamie.feuerhelm@co.pierce.wi.us- at 1547 hours on Tuesday, 1 December 2015.
6. I am now filing with Pierce County Court on 28 June, 2016 a dismissal letter from me, field mcconnell, which will list 19 July, 2016 as the day for any rebuttal by Pierce County Court or, according to Commercial Law, all statements in this Affidavit of 28 June, 2016 will become legal facts in Law. Any written rebuttals need to be submitted via certified mail addressed to ''field mcconnell'', P O Box 9, Plum City WI 54761 and must be signed by a responsible person who will then be considered in violation of SEC Tracer #2640220 which I delivered to Pierce County Court and the Rodli Law firm on 10 November, 2015.
Hear ye, Hear ye, Hear ye. I am the Natural Man, and I am calling out your soul to hold you accountable for the many crimes you may have committed against me.
If you are registered with the British Accreditation Registry, you may be committing treason, if you are working as a Public Servant in the united States of America, by way of the original 13th Amendment.
In 1871, the corporation known as the UNITED STATES was created, and a new constitution was drafted which was almost identical to the Republic or Organic Constitution. The original 13th Amendment was deliberately omitted, and was replaced with what we now commonly know of as being the 13th Amendment, which should actually be the 14th Amendment.
The original 13th Amendment was fraudulently omitted, without full disclosure, without being voted on, and therefor is legitimately still in place.
We the People are tired of having our God given Imprescriptible Rights violated by a secret society based in London (a foreign country), through any of its Temples, and we are now in the process of taking our country back.Abraham Lincoln may have vacated the Republic in 1860 by becoming President and violating the original 13th Amendment, since he was a member of the London Lawyers Guild, which is related to the British Crown Templars, who are over the Middle Temple that controls the American BAR (British Accreditation Registry) Association. That in no way means all Americans vacated the Republic of the united States of America (no, that is not a typo).
There is now a duality of citizenship in this country, pursuant to Erie Railroad v Tompkins, 304 US 64. I have a right to be aligned with the Statutory De facto Democracy, if I have a desire to, which I do not. I also have a right to be aligned with the Lawful De jure Republic, if I so choose, and that is where my loyalties are. I am a Natural Born Man, Sovereign in the Republic, bound to support our Common Law (Organic) Constitution with the Bill of Rights, which is the Supreme Law of the Land, as our Founding Fathers intended for us to be, Citizens of one of the several states, not a citizen of a mass of corporations known as the United States, United States of America, US, U.S., U.S. Inc., or a variety of other corporate names.
I, refuse to contract with anyone who is registered with the BAR (British Accreditation Registry). I refuse to be a willing participant in any of their activities of treason, tyranny, and/or tontine, and/or ponzi schemes .If I am made to do so Under Duress, I will Reserve All My God Given Imprescriptible Rights, Under Duress or Under Protest, Without Prejudice, At Arms Length, Non-Assumpsit. UCC 1-207, UCC 1-308, UCC 1-103.6. I will Reserve my Right to file and serve Criminal Complaints, file Liens, Claims, and Bills of Exchange, including Salvage Liens (a Maritime Law), as Remedy for any Rights Violations I am made to endure, including, but not limited to unjustly claiming Jurisdiction over me.Signed on the right side, as I am the creditor: field mcconnell
____________________________Before me, ______________________________, a Notary Public duly authorized by the State of Wisconsin personally appeared field mcconnell who has Sworn and Subscribed in my presence, the foregoing document, on this ___________ day of _____, in the year of my Lord, 2016.
___________________________Notary PublicSEAL
8. I, field mcconnell, recognize that the ''United States'' is a federation of actual nation-states. The states of the land not the federal ''government'' are the actual sovereign nations. You receive your nationality at birth as a Nevadan, Californian, Virginian, etc. Your nationality and your sovereignty cannot be taken away from you or changed unless you willfully throw it away. The Founders knew this and protected your nationality. The Naturalization Act of 1802, Seventh Congress, Session 1, Chapter 28, Sections 1-4, April 14, 1802 sets forth the exact requirements necessary for anyone born in an American state to become a United States Citizen. Period. While the ''United States'' has always allowed Dual Citizenship'-- that is, has allowed its ''Citizens'' to claim both State and Federal Citizenship at the same time, the States of the Union make no such allowance. From the standpoint of the organic states, you are either out or you are in. I, field mcconnell, have made up my mind whether that I am a man standing on my native land. Most of us will agree that we are Virginians standing on the land of Virginia or Wisconsinites standing on the land of Wisconsin, and all of us can ask for proof that we ever completed the steps necessary to become United States Citizens? From the standpoint of the States of the Union, no such steps have been taken and no such ''United States Citizenship'' can be presumed absent such knowing and public declaration and action. Also from the standpoint of the States of the Union no such thing as a ''citizen of the United States'' exists '-- This purely corporate political status was created by the 14th Amendment of the Corporate Charter of the United States of America, Inc. deceptively calling itself the ''Constitution of the United States of America'' and has nothing to do with us and our nationality. I, field mcconnell, know this and give Judicial Notice along with an Affidavit affirming thatmy nativity occurred on the land and I. field mcconnell, demand to see any proof otherwise demonstrating that I completed the steps required by the Naturalization Act of 1802. No such evidence exists and USDOJ or Corporate Courts cannot produce it. Their claim after-the-fact that I agreed to become a corporate slave for them doesn't hold any water. And my Mother's unknowing signature on an Application for a Birth Certificate doesn't either. I grasp of I am and how to prove and assert it, I am prepared to lodge further objections with the court and this is where the Glossa Judicial Notice and Order comes in. Ever heard anyone use the expression, ''Put a gloss on it'''---? It's a slang expression meaning to ''sugar coat or otherwise apply a mask or other deliberate obfuscation of identity or fact''. That's what the use of Glossa promotes'-- a form of knowing misrepresentation of fact calculated to promote personage being practiced by attorneys to hide the identity of both plaintiffs and defendants. It is unlawful and illegal for any organization promoting itself as a ''court'' to use Glossa or any other form of knowing misrepresentation. So either the ''court'' has to admit it is a crime syndicate and a fraud, or it has to stop using Glossa and clearly identify the plaintiffs and defendants. There are two reference books called similar names '-- One is the Chicago Manuel of Style, a popular style guide used widely by newspapers and other publications to provide uniform guidelines and standards for reporters and other writers; it is a large reference book similar to a dictionary or thesaurus. The other is The Chicago Manuel of Styles, with an ''s'' which is a much smaller and more limited publication the size of a larger format paperback book, that deals with the subject of ''styles'' or ''stiles''(British) exclusively. The most recent edition I can find is 1948, though there may be more recent editions. Both of these publications adequately explain what the Glossa is, as does Black's Law Dictionary. The earlier versions of the American Bar Association guides to legal style and usage also plainly state that the use of all capital letters denotes either a corporation or a dead man's estate. I, field mcconnell, am not deceased and I am a free man not a corporation. The use of Glossa goes back to Roman times, when the use of all capital letters was used to denote the name of a slave'---so there is no excuse for anyone pretending that the use of Glossa is meaningless and no reason for anyone to scoff at your objections to its use with respect to your good name. I am not a slave; I am a free man born of God. The authority for my Order is Article X of the actual Constitution, which the rats also adopted in their failed attempt to enclose and privatize our Organic Law'-- the ''undelegated powers'' of the states and the people in the international jurisdiction of the sea. There is no delegation of power granted to Congress to create any corporate ''persons'' and name them after us '-- which is an act of attempted identity theft and a trespass upon our private property'-- nor was Congress ever enabled to use Glossa to denote corporations, estates or other corporate entities in any venue affecting us. Our Public Law requires all corporations to be clearly identified by suffixes attached to the name of the corporation, such as ''John Deere, Incorporated.'' or ''Hiram Walker, LLC''. This is required as a protection against exactly the kind of personage and barratry and other legal chicanery that has been practiced upon the innocent American People. In this Affidavit I am issuing Judicial Notice that there is no evidence that Congress was ever empowered to name corporate persons after living American State Nationals, nor is there any provision for Congress to require or even request registration of any child born on American soil '-- which is a repugnant and internationally forbidden activity resulting in involuntary servitude, press-ganging, and enslavement outlawed throughout the world since 1926. Any claim that a private contract can overcome the Public Law of this country or the International Law as a whole is in their favorite word, ''frivolous''; while anyone might enter into such a contract, the contract itself is unlawful and null and void from inception. This is the basis of my election of revocation from the IRS system which the IRS accepted from me on 26 May, 2015. Every ''court'' public and private operating on American soil is required to take Judicial Notice and stop accepting claims using GLOSSA. Both the plaintiffs and defendants must be clearly, explicitly identified. I have the right under Article X of the actual Constitution and under the provisions of The Wisconsin Statehood Compact to require this correction and I have done so. If USDOJ or Pierce County Court, both corporations, want to argue that they are dry docked on American soil and acting under treaty, they had better start obeying the treaties they owe me, field mcconnell, including the Treaty of Ghent 1814 and start operating exclusively within their proper jurisdiction. When they trespass onto my jurisdiction and address my people under false presumptions they have to answer to me and my directives. It might appear that the wording of my Order is awkward and that the subjects and verbs mismatch. This is because the Order is stated in Legalese. It prohibits''separately'' both the conventions using Glossa and the Glossa (NAME) itself'--- both the deed and the word. This may seem a fine distinction, but it is necessary to prevent any additional fudging and chicanery. The judges and lawyers reading it will grasp the meaning and implications readily enough. The Order has been forwarded via Registered Mail to the Hague and also via email to the Office of the Special Prosecutor. These outrages will not be allowed to continue in any event, but you can all assist by calling these courts and their personnel on the carpet. When they trespass on you and your name and address mail or anything else to you using Glossa'-- feel free to stomp them flat with objections they cannot answer. I, field mcconnell, understand it is impossible to be ''in contempt of court'' with respect to a court that has no jurisdiction related to you. When they operate in disrespect of the actual Constitution and our Public Law, they are owed no treaty. This is the reason I clearly state that PIERCE COUNTY COURT and the RODLI LAW FIRM have no jurisdiction over me, field mcconnell, and I DEMAND Civil Case 15 FA 178 be dismissed immediately.
9. The Rodli Law Firm has continued to threaten me with loss of property if I do not consent to their unlawful inequitable contract created with lack of jurisdiction. They are now acting as an ally of the Internal Revenue Service from which I revoked my election on 22 May 2015 and which has not been rebutted by IRS Commissioner John Koskinen doing business at the IRS HQ located at City View Plaza II Bldg., 48 Carr 165 km.1.2, Guaynabo, PR 00968-8000 . The fact that Rodli Law Firm is conspiring with IRS now invokes RICO trebling of damages resulting in a claim now, by field mcconnell, against Rodli Law Firm for $2,317,500 plus expenses, to be paid, or rebutted, by 1600 central, Tuesday, 19 July, 2016 at which time they will become facts according to commercial law which applies to mortgages.
10. I, field mcconnell, had previous travel plans to be in United Kingdom and Massachusetts in time frame 04 March 2016 to 27 March 2016 as evidenced by Delta Airlines PNR # GIN7TN and GIHYBV. These plans were amended on 4 March 2016 when I became aware of a need to put new dead bolts on my home as property was being removed. Parties removing property are known to me and have been communicated with. The property has not been returned and any property now in the house which is not mine will not be removed by 19 July, 2016, if Rodli Law doesn't have an honest and lawful, LAWFUL, rebuttal submitted via Certified mail to me with a signature of an agent at Rodli who shall be named on the SEC Tracer #2640220 that they would then be in violation of as they have previously been advised.
11. In a lack of disclosure Rodli Law Firm and attorney Danny Murray have not identified the shareholders of the corporation called ''Pierce County Wisconsin''. This disclosure is demanded NLT 1600 19 July, 2016. Please note that I have not listed Pierce County or Pierce County Court as participants in this lack of discovery regarding the names of the shareholders in the corporation called ''Pierce County Wisconsin'' and there is a very good reason why they are not listed.
12. As a Human Living Being free upon the land I have removed myself from any corporate entanglement with Pierce County, the franchise of Wisconsin, and the corporation headquartered in Puerto Rico known as the Internal Revenue Service, which is a foreign owned corporation operating at time in collusion with BAR registrants who are, in fact, foreign agents.
13. To Keith Rodli, Leo Beskar, Maxfield Neuhaus, Danny Murray, Kenneth Pletcher, Stuart Krueger, Gwen Kuchevar, Catherine Munkittrick and Kelly J. Hetrick I ask the question, under oath, WHO ARE THE SHAREHOLDERS OF THE CORPORATION of PIERCE COUNTY WISCONSIN. I ask this because you are involved in a RICO action against myself, ''field mcconnell''.
14. The unrebutted January 21, 2016 Affidavit of Truth, previously sent to all listed parties, has been established as truth in commerce and in court as a matter of fact.
15. Does Rodli Law Firm have an interest in the Internal Revenue Service from which I revoked my election on 22 May, 2015? If not, why did your attorney Dan Murray write, on 1 March, 2016, on Rodli Letterhead this paragraph, ver batim: ''That the marital home be sold, as well as the personal property items on the attached list. That after the bank loan is paid, that the remaining funds be paid equally to each party.However, Mr. McConnell shall be responsible for the current IRS tax obligation and shall not receive any payments from the sale of the home or personal property until the IRS obligation is fully satisfied''. If not rebutted by Rodli Law AND Attorney Danny Murray by 1600 pm Tuesday, July 19, 2016 lawful evidence to the contrary, this affidavit is at law evidence of the statements made herein. Failure to present evidence to the contrary of the Affiant's testimony will be evidence that all parties stipulate to the facts herein as true, correct, complete to qualify and quantify the genuine Facts(s) to this matter which establishes the grounds for the dismissal of the fraud laden Case 15 FA 178
16. I believe that the Plaintiff is Case 15 FA 178 is an unwitting victim of Fraud by Rodli Law and Danny Murray. As a free man and gentleman I stand behind my offer of a mediated settlement according to the terms delivered to her on 3 December, 2015 when I gave her checks totaling $26,400 and asked her to tell me where the $6533 wrongfully taken from my checking account #368 307 at Waumandee State Bank went. She, the unwitting victim of legal malpractice and fraud, has not accepted my offer and has only until 1530, 19 July, 2016 to do so IN WRITING and with a Notary Seal, or she will have exhausted my good nature and sense of fairness. She, the unwitting victim, knew fully well that the property purchased in time frame 19 May, 2010 to 30 June, 2015 was purchased with Trust Assets delivered to myself, field mcconnell, and my four natural children in his Trust administered by USAA.
17. At that time I will communicate in writing two significant facts the unwitting plaintiff has been dishonest regarding her communications with both the BAR registrant Danny Murray and my four natural children.
18. Under Wisconsin statutes a divorced person cannot remarry for 6 months.
19. Unwitting plaintiff filed for divorce on 10 November, 2015, I granted it on 3 December, 2015 and on 15 June, 2016 I became married to Denise Irene (Clarke) McConnell who is now due, and will be conveyed, all benefits that the unwitting plaintiff enjoyed during the tenure of our marriage.
20. In summary, I have been involved globally in the exposure of Treasons, and murders, and if the unwitting plaintiff wished to be ignorant of my work that clearly was an option. However, the USDoJ and Pierce County Court are not lawfully advised of my work and my status. My work has involved exposing B H Obama as Barry Soetoro, Punahou '79 who was an Indonesian Muslim. My work has discovered that my sibling Kristine Marcy gave Obama a fraudulent U S Passport in 1994. My work has included a videotaped speech on 15 May, 2016 where I clearly define crimes of murder and treason by both Hillary Clinton and George H. W. Bush.
Submitted, on this 27th day of June, 2016
______________________Field McConnell(Non-negotiable, all rights reserved)
Address Witness 1 Address Witness 2
We, the undersigned, witness this 28th day of June, 2016, that the one known to us to be Field McConnell, did personally appear before us in Pepin County, State of Wisconsin, and upon affirmation execute and affix the above signature.
_____________________________________ _____________________________________
Letter to Russian Ambassador also addresses the downing of MH-17
Letter to Russian Ambassador also addresses the downing of MH-17
Former @USNavy Pilot Exposes Truth About #MH370 Disappearance
Will Aussies, Dutch, and #US heighten false accusations against #Russia and #Ukraine, as @USMC #whistleblower reveals truth of #MH370 and #MH17 in docu-drama to debut at Caravan To Midnight's Operation CLASSIFIED on Veterans Day Weekend in Dallas, Texas?@fieldmcc @JohnBWellsCTM
'-- Abel Danger Global (@Telford_Russian) May 27, 2018
9-16-2013 Letter to Putin from Field McConnell, U.S. Marine>>
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Roseanne Barr targets former Obama adviser in racially charged tweet | TheHill
Tue, 29 May 2018 20:42
''Roseanne'' star Roseanne Barr attacked former Obama White House adviser Valerie Jarett on Tuesday in a tweet alleging connections to the Muslim Brotherhood that many have called racist.
In the tweet, the ABC star attacked Jarett, who was born in Iran, as a child of the Islamist organization Muslim Brotherhood and the movie ''Planet of the Apes.''
''Muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby=vj,'' Barr wrote, using Jarrett's initials and responding to a tweet accusing the former Obama adviser of helping ''hide'' misdeeds for the Obama administration.
muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby=vj
'-- Roseanne Barr (@therealroseanne) May 29, 2018Barr also sent out a number of other tweets Tuesday morning, lashing out at billionaire liberal donor George Soros and former President Clinton's daughter, Chelsea Clinton, whom the comedian linked to a right-wing conspiracy accusing Soros of trying to orchestrate ''the overthrow of us constitutional republic.''
''Soros' goal; the overthrow of us constitutional republic by buying/backing candidates 4 local district attorney races who will ignore US law & favor 'feelings' instead-and call everyone who is alarmed by that 'racist,''' Barr tweeted.
"Chelsea Soros Clinton," she wrote in an earlier tweet.
soros' goal; the overthrow of us constitutional republic by buying/backing candidates 4 local district attorney races who will ignore US law & favor 'feelings' instead-and call everyone who is alarmed by that 'racist'.
'-- Roseanne Barr (@therealroseanne) May 29, 2018Chelsea Soros Clinton
'-- Roseanne Barr (@therealroseanne) May 29, 2018Right-wing activists have accused Soros, who frequently supports liberal causes, of bankrolling anti-President Trump Donald John TrumpUS pauses new North Korea sanctions as officials try to reset summit: report Garrett reverses, will not seek reelection amid battle with alcoholism Trump mocks Dem lawmaker for introducing bill to repeal GOP tax cuts MORE demonstrations, including at his inauguration.
Earlier this year former Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke insinuated that the "March for Our Lives" movement against gun violence had Soros's "fingerprints all over it," suggesting he was financially supporting the movement.
Barr's reboot of the popular comedy "Roseanne" on ABC was met with both criticism and strong ratings earlier this year when it was revealed Barr's character would be portrayed as a Trump supporter.
Read more from The Hill:
Roseanne Barr apologizes for racially charged 'bad joke' about Valerie Jarrett, says she's leaving Twitter
Italy: Bond market pressure just getting started - Business Insider
Tue, 29 May 2018 13:01
Reuters/Jason Cairnduff
President Sergio Mattarella rejected euroskeptic economist and former banker Paolo Savona for finance minister.Italian bond yields are surging amid the political uncertainty.Citi says yields could go a lot higher from here. Italian yields are surging Tuesday morning amid growing political turmoil in Italy after President Sergio Mattarella rejected euroskeptic economist and former banker Paolo Savona for finance minister. Now Mattarella must form a new government or call for another election.
"His chances of succeeding are slim and elections are likely in September," Kit Juckes, a strategist at Societe Generale wrote on Tuesday morning. "Which leaves us 3-4 months of uncertainty ahead of a vote that may be seen as a referendum on Euro-membership."
The worries have sent Italian yields sharply higher, with the 2-year soaring more than 150 basis points at its highs. Elsewhere along the curve, the benchmark 10-year yield is up more than 40 bps at 3.08%, and according to the Citi Fx Technicals team led by Tom Fitzpatrick things are likely just getting started.
In a note sent out to clients on Friday, Fitzpatrick's team suggested that a weekly close above the 2.72%-2.74% level would "complete a clear double bottom with a target as high as 4.40-4.45%." And while it's only Tuesday, yields look like they are well on their way to close above that key level.
Citi FX Technicals
That's likely bad news for the rest of the European periphery, which is seeing their borrowing costs surge alongside Italy's. Greece is seeing the biggest impact, with its 10-year yield up 47 bps at 4.81%. Meanwhile, Spain and Portugal's 10-year yields are higher by 7 and 12 bps respectively.
More: Italy Bond Market Yield Powered By Sailthru Advertisement
Stormy Daniels's Lawyer Michael Avenatti Complicates Michael Cohen Probe - WSJ
Tue, 29 May 2018 12:55
A lawyer for former adult-film star Stephanie Clifford has frustrated efforts by federal prosecutors to obtain information about a hush-money deal involving President Donald Trump's personal lawyer, according to people familiar with the matter.
In public, Michael Avenatti, Ms. Clifford's current attorney, has been among the most vocal critics of Michael Cohen, the lawyer who paid her $130,000 in October 2016 to sign a nondisclosure agreement about an alleged 2006 sexual encounter with Mr. Trump.
But behind the scenes, Mr. Avenatti has slowed prosecutors' efforts to discuss the nondisclosure agreement with Ms. Clifford's former lawyer, these people say. Mr. Avenatti also demanded to review documents investigators subpoenaed from Ms. Clifford's former manager, they said.
Mr. Cohen is under criminal investigation for possible campaign-finance violations and bank fraud related to the payment to Ms. Clifford, known professionally as Stormy Daniels, and other business dealings, according to other people familiar with the probe. He has denied wrongdoing and hasn't been charged with any crime. Mr. Trump has denied having sex with Ms. Clifford.
Mr. Avenatti hasn't yet acted on multiple requests from federal prosecutors in Manhattan for Ms. Clifford to waive the attorney-client privilege that prevents her former lawyer from discussing their communications about the nondisclosure deal, the people familiar with the matter said. In April, Mr. Avenatti, acting in his capacity as Ms. Clifford's current lawyer, sent a cease-and-desist letter to her former lawyer, Keith Davidson, ordering him not to disclose any communications related to her, one of those people said.
Mr. Avenatti made similar demands of Ms. Clifford's former manager, Gina Rodriguez, who helped engineer the hush-money deal. Mr. Avenatti tried to block Ms. Rodriguez from providing her communications with Ms. Clifford to federal prosecutors until he had reviewed them, other people familiar with the matter said.
Mr. Avenatti has told federal prosecutors he is trying to get Ms. Clifford to agree to waive her attorney-client privilege, but prosecutors have come to believe he is stringing them along, the people familiar with the matter said. The delays in responding to their requests to waive privilege aren't seen as highly damaging to the probe but have frustrated investigators, they said.
On Monday, Mr. Avenatti said he and Ms. Clifford have ''cooperated fully'' with government prosecutors. He said he and Ms. Clifford are still determining whether to waive privilege and ''ironing out the details,'' including reviewing documents he has sought from Mr. Davidson.
''We have already started producing documents to the government so any suggestion we are not cooperating is meritless,'' Mr. Avenatti said.
Mr. Avenatti said he instructed Mr. Davidson to stop communicating about Ms. Clifford, accusing him of ''conspiring behind her back with Mr. Cohen.'' Mr. Davidson has denied allegations that he worked with Mr. Cohen against his former client's interests.
Steven Lubet, a professor at Northwestern Pritzker School of Law who isn't involved in the matter, said while the situation involving Ms. Clifford is unusual, lawyers in general are reluctant to give up attorney-client protections.
Separately, a federal judge last month appointed a special master to assess whether any of the materials seized by Federal Bureau of Investigation agents in a raid on Mr. Cohen's premises should be protected by attorney-client privilege and excluded from the investigation.
As Ms. Clifford's former lawyer, Mr. Davidson has information that could be important to the investigation, because he spoke to Mr. Cohen extensively while negotiating the nondisclosure agreement during Mr. Trump's campaign.
Ms. Rodriguez also worked closely with Ms. Clifford on the deal. Through her lawyer, she has turned over to prosecutors her text messages and emails with Ms. Clifford since 2016 in response to a subpoena, over Mr. Avenatti's objections, other people said.
Mr. Avenatti said in an emailed statement that Ms. Rodriguez's communications with Ms. Clifford are protected by attorney-client privilege because Ms. Rodriguez was acting as a go-between for Ms. Clifford and Mr. Davidson.
Mr. Avenatti said he had a right to review the documents and had threatened to sue Ms. Rodriguez if she refused to provide him with those communications for review.
''We never told her not to provide documents to the government nor did we tell her not to cooperate,'' Mr. Avenatti said.
Prof. Lubet said Ms. Rodriguez's communications with Ms. Clifford would be protected only if they were for the purpose of conveying legal advice from or giving direction to Mr. Davidson.
Mr. Avenatti also has threatened to sue Ms. Rodriguez to enforce a 2016 nondisclosure agreement between the manager and Ms. Clifford that prevents Ms. Rodriguez from speaking publicly about her work for Ms. Clifford, people familiar with the matter said.
Mr. Avenatti denied making those threats. ''That never happened. Period,'' he said.
The information investigators have requested from Ms. Clifford's former representatives could shed light on her motivations in agreeing to the 2016 deal.
Ms. Clifford has recently said she agreed to the $130,000 deal with Mr. Cohen in 2016 not for the money, but because she feared for her family's safety. That fear, she said, was based on a threat she received from an unidentified man who told her to ''leave Trump alone'' when a magazine nearly published her story several years earlier.
During Mr. Trump's campaign, ''the story was coming out again,'' Ms. Clifford has said, so she agreed to the hush-money deal rather than subject herself and her family to possible danger.
But in the communications sought by prosecutors, Ms. Clifford didn't mention being threatened or fearing for her safety before making the deal with Mr. Cohen, according to people familiar with the situation. Rather, she was trying actively to sell her story to various outlets, these people say.
Mr. Avenatti called that account ''patently false,'' and said Ms. Clifford spoke of the threat to many people before executing the hush agreement.
Write to Joe Palazzolo at joe.palazzolo@wsj.com, Michael Rothfeld at michael.rothfeld@wsj.com and Nicole Hong at nicole.hong@wsj.com
The spy (who wasn't a spy) was spying on the Trump campaign - Washington Times
Tue, 29 May 2018 12:41
You'd be forgiven if you're suffering from a bit of whiplash following the media's coverage of the FBI's spy operation on the 2016 Trump campaign.
First it was insane and paranoid to suggest the FBI spied on Trump's 2016 operation. Then we learned there were multiple electronic surveillance operations (at least one authorized through the ultra-secret FISA court) on members of the campaign, including one-time chairman Paul Manafort.
Now we learn the FBI utilized a person linked with the CIA to engage in direct contact and conversations with members of the Trump team for the sole purpose of gathering information on the operation and suspected contact with the Russian government.
In other words: They had a spy.
But get ready for another stinging tinge of whiplash'... the spy, wasn't a spy and he was not engaged in spying on the campaign. He was a source who was investigating the campaign.
We know this because the New York Times told us:
The New York Times, sitting on one of the most blockbuster scandals in American history, denied their own story in their own headline.
''Not to spy'' they scream in their headline.
But read what they actually report this ''informant'' did: (emphasis added)
In fact, F.B.I. agents sent an informant to talk to two campaign advisers only after they received evidence that the pair had suspicious contacts linked to Russia during the campaign. The informant, an American academic who teaches in Britain, made contact late that summer with one campaign adviser, George Papadopoulos, according to people familiar with the matter. He also met repeatedly in the ensuing months with the other aide, Carter Page, who was also under F.B.I. scrutiny for his ties to Russia.
No evidence has emerged that the informant acted improperly when the F.B.I. asked for help in gathering information on the former campaign advisers, or that agents veered from the F.B.I.'s investigative guidelines and began a politically motivated inquiry, which would be illegal.
F.B.I. agents were seeking more details about what Mr. Papadopoulos knew about the hacked Democratic emails, and one month after their Russia investigation began, Mr. Papadopoulos received a curious message. The academic inquired about his interest in writing a research paper on a disputed gas field in the eastern Mediterranean Sea, a subject of Mr. Papadopoulos's expertise.
The informant offered a $3,000 honorarium for the paper and a paid trip to London, where the two could meet and discuss the research project. ''I understand that this is rather sudden but thought that given your expertise it might be of interest to you,'' the informant wrote in a message to Mr. Papadopoulos, sent on Sept. 2, 2016.
Mr. Papadopoulos accepted the offer and arrived in London two weeks later, where he met for several days with the academic and one of his assistants, a young woman.
Over drinks and dinner one evening at a high-end London hotel, the F.B.I. informant raised the subject of the hacked Democratic National Committee emails that had spilled into public view earlier that summer, according to a person familiar with the conversation. The source noted how helpful they had been to the Trump campaign, and asked Mr. Papadopoulos whether he knew anything about Russian attempts to influence the 2016 presidential election.
So we know that this ''informant'' was sent by the FBI for the sole and specific purpose of talking to two advisers connected with the campaign. And they did so because they suspected those two individuals had suspicious contact with Russia.
And we know, according to the Times, that he was to ''gather information'' during the course of these conversations on behalf of the FBI.
And the Times tells us the ''informant'' made contact with Papadopoulos under false pretenses, paid him a large sum of cash, put him in contact with a ''young woman'' for several days, courted him with dinner and drinks in a high-end hotel and then tried to draw from him specific information about the DNC email hack.
According to the New York Times, the person doing all of those things is not a spy. A man who secretly engages a person under false pretenses for the sole purpose of gathering information from them. Information that is then reported back to a government agency.
And that is not a spy, according to the New York Times.
Not to get too pedantic here, but let's let Dictionary.com have a crack at this:
spy [spahy]
noun, plural spies.
1. a person employed by a government to obtain secret information or intelligence about another, usually hostile, country, especially with reference to military or naval affairs.
2. a person who keeps close and secret watch on the actions and words of another or others.
The New York Times: All the semantics that're fit to print.
You might want to see someone about that whiplash.
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Thread by @Suzi3D: "THREAD: After more than 6 months of watching people get scammed by the phenomena, I'm going to make the below thread to explain to yo ['...]" #QAnon #JTRIG #CSAinquiry #DNCLeaks
Tue, 29 May 2018 04:33
After more than 6 months of watching people get scammed by the #QAnon phenomena, I'm going to make the below thread to explain to you exactly why it is an intelligence agency-backed psyop, what techniques are being used, and why you need to stop people falling for it.
2. To achieve this, the operation moves through three phases.
It does this by appearing to leak insider information to the #QAnon audience. Making them feel that they are getting access to information that they otherwise wouldn't be privy to
2a. This has several effects. Firstly, it establishes Q's reputation as a government source. A whistleblower, or a leaker. More importantly, it begins to shape him/her/them as an authority figure. Someone to be looked up to. Someone who is different from the crowd. The Pied Piper
2b. The information "leaked" to establish credibility is not internal NSA documents like Snowden, or publishing evidence of war crimes like Assange, but is simply "heads-up' style reference points about what will be in the news or internal political machinations in Washington.
2c. In other words, it is not information that is in any way a meaningful threat to the supremacy of the intelligence agencies of the United States. It will not cause them to lose any sleep at night. They are not launching public manhunts for Q like they did for Assange & Snowden
2d. Q employs gamification.
This is a technique frequently used by big data companies/corporates, surveillance companies, and intelligence agencies. It's not enough for Q to simply tell you stuff outright. So it has to become a quiz. It has to be a puzzle. It has to become fun.
2e. Q professes to share the values and priorities of his/her/their target audience.
This creates a natural affinity between audience and Pied Piper. It creates a promise that if they follow Q, they will be led towards achieving the perfect outcomes that they hope and dream of.
2f. Of course the only place the Pied Piper will lead them is exactly where the Pied Piper wants to take them. Not where the audience wants to go. But every time these grand promises don't pan out, he tells them, be patient! Wait! Have faith! We want the same thing. We'll get it!
To build a truly evangelical following, the audience must become DEVOTED. Devotion is incredibly powerful. A devoted following is loyal and compliant, willing to silence their Devil's Advocate inner tendencies, willing to extend their faith.
3a. Concept of a global awakening was discussed by
@davidicke in print in the 90s. Was written about in James Redfield's Celestine Prophecy series in the '00s. I suspect the concept dates back centuries. The information age has accelerated awareness, yes. DS seeks to control it.
3b. Q/Q followers cross-pollinate the concept of a global awakening with a spiritual awakening, and funnel that energy straight back into the conventional two-party political paradigm. A paradigm which is fundamentally opposed to the empowerment of individuals & spiritual growth.
3c. I have no doubt that the human brain & consciousness is capable of far more than what legacy science has suggested. But the mix of spirituality with politics, & spiritual devotion to a man who rubs shoulders with Kissinger, appoints Pompeo, Bolton & Haspel, is ridiculous.
4. These ops are not simply just like the day-to-day info ops where they want to make the audience believe false things. In order to unleash their full power, they have to shift focus & direct the audience to action.
4a. Slowly and subtly, the Pied Piper starts to shift the direction. Where Q started out focusing on the int agencies/Deep-State-Will-Be-Drained promises, he begins to start drawing other figures into his narratives. Edward Snowden. Julian Assange.
Targets of the Deep State.
4b. This is where Q's stated motives begin to fall apart.
We don't even have to ask who benefits. We can just start asking some other really basic questions. Who does the Deep State want dead or in jail, more than anyone else?
Edward Snowden, Julian Assange & Kim Dotcom.
4c. Therefore, what is the most subversive thing that an opponent of the Deep State can do?
Clue: not reading #QAnon all day every day on the internet.
Taking action in support of Edward Snowden, Julian Assange and Kim Dotcom.
THAT is what the Deep State don't want you to do.
4d. The reason I am mentioning Kim Dotcom is not because of Q, but because Ed, Julian and Kim are all being prosecuted in the Eastern District Court of Virginia. The home of the CIA.
All three are being targeted by massive operations undertaken by the same intelligence agencies
4e. The Snowden file revelations (not the revelations in the MSM, but in the actual documents which
@ElizabethleaVos4f. Those files reveal, in the NSA's own words, that they are seeking to build a "global network" that gives them "100% coverage" of every inch of the planet. The wars aren't just for oil. They are for global supremacy. The globalists intend to dominate every country on earth.
4g. We know this thanks to sacrifices of real whistleblowers. Not whistleblowers who showed us what Trump will tweet, or where he will be visiting next, or what will be in the news tomorrow. Whistleblowers that exposed the innermost secrets of the most powerful agencies on earth
4h. So when Q started telling people to look into Snowden and his family, I smelled a rat instantly.
The only people who want you digging dirt on Snowden are the people who want him dead or in jail.
And those people ARE THE DEEP STATE.
5. A lot of you are asking me questions "what about this" "what about that" - I will address the common themes shortly. But first I want to explain why the Q methodologies of building trust, gamification & then subverting the original intent & purpose is so transparent to me.
5a. The answer is because this is how intelligence agency and private security companies target activists. These methodologies have been in use for years. They are the techniques of "handlers". What is different about Q is they they are now handling people on a massive scale.
5b. They make you feel special. They make you feel clever. They make you feel lucky. They otherise you. According to them, you are different. You can do more, be more, achieve more. All these things are true of everyone. But their intent is to build trust so they can shape you.
5c. I think Q - which is more likely to be an operation than a person - is the first instance of a "mass handler". Same techniques and methodologies, same training, same net results. End goal same as
#JTRIG: "to use online influence ops to make targets take real world actions"
5d. JTRIG is a psychological warfare doctrine from GCHQ (UK's NSA) but is employed across the Five Eyes at minimum and more broadly the principles are utilised against targets by every intelligence agency on the planet. Study it. It is one of the many gems gifted to us by Snowden
5e. And what is the name of the NSA group tasked with hunting down Snowden for having leaked such powerful information to the world?
The Q Group.
As revealed in June 2013, the week of Snowden's first disclosures:
6. Now I'm going to cover off a few common sense indicators that the Q operation is tolerated at best, or helped to grow at worst, by the same forces that it supposedly stands in opposition to.
Then I will address the common themes of the questions I'm being asked in replies
6a. If the NSA having a "Q group" hunting down Snowden wasn't enough, just stop and think about how the Deep State usually reacts to anyone who meaningfully builds a large movement to ostensibly challenge their authority. Then ask yourself why that isn't used against
6b. The
#QAnon movement has swelled to an audience of 100s of 1000s, arguably millions around the world are watching/following in some capacity. That is definitely large enough to get the full-blown state-led-smear, corporate-censorship, intel agency-manhunt treatment. But hasn't
6c. When the Pentagon manhunt for Julian Assange was launched in 2010, ditto with the Snowden manhunt in 2013, we saw the heads of the intelligence agencies warning that they were grave threats to national security. Smears were abundant. Supporters were individually targeted.
6d. The first step of the Deep State is to ridicule the support base, to a mainstream audience. The typical playbook would be for NYT, WaPo, CNN etc to be telling everyone that
#QAnon supporters are unwashed kids-in-moms-basement dirty hippies like Occupy etc. Hasn't happened.
6e. Notable individuals who support and circulate
#QAnon would be publicly named and shamed, or worse, subject to grand jury proceedings and indictments for being party to the leaking of classified information. Targeted by all of the mechanisms of the state. Also hasn't happened.
6e. By contrast, activists against the TPP were targeted. Occupy activists were targeted. Indigenous activists are targeted. Anyone related to WikiLeaks is targeted. Whistleblowers are targeted. Countless other movements, targeted. (Including both left & right wing activism)
7. OK let's address some of the themes of the commenters. Then after, we're going to get into some info that the Deep State REALLY doesn't want you to know. Information with serious ramifications that is in the public arena but which is being ignored/suppressed.
7a. "But Q teaches us to research and think for ourselves"
No. The internet and social media has taught us to research. Access to alternative sources of information has taught us to think for ourselves.
What Q does is get you to research what Q wants you to research.
7b. ...and in doing so, Q is commandeering and directing your use of your time.
The vagueness of the posts is intentional. It's not just gamification, it's a time-sink. A deliberate rabbit hole. Whistleblowers don't do this. They say "here is the info, straight up". No games.
7b. "but what about the pedos? Don't you believe there are pedos in govt?"
That there are pedos in the highest echelons of global political power has been known for at least 3 decades. Victims campaigning ultimately resulted in the #CSAinquiry years before #QAnon or #DNCLeaks.
7c. "but what about the 13,000 secret indictments? That will drain the swamp!"
The people aren't the problem, the systems are the problem. In the NSA's own words in its docs, "the global network". 100+ countries are involved. This is bigger than the US election or US politics.
7d. Will I be happy if Clinton and the entire criminal mafia that she is the figurehead of ends up in jail? Sure. She wanted to drone Assange. She levelled entire countries. She is a fake feminist. Lock her up. But politicians don't control Washington. The globalists control it.
7e. And the globalists are the military powers of the "global network" - they call themselves "partner agencies". They share access to their satellites, networks, human & fiscal resources, and they control most of this planet. This TV politics nonsense ppl follow is a total sham.
7g. "But how did he know what Trump would tweet??"
Int agency technique:
When NSA was recently outed trying to cultivate Russian sources, they had told the Russian sources what they would tweet from the official NSA Twitter account before they tweeted it duckduckgo.com/?q=NSA+twitter'...
7h. "Why are you doing this? Why try to discredit Q?"
I observed but didn't judge or form an opinion about the Q stuff for a long time. I knew time would tell the true colours behind it. As soon as I saw it targeting Deep State targets, rather than the Deep State, game was up.
8. Here comes the good bit. From my perspective. This is where I get to highlight a ton of highly consequential info about "the global network" that has flown under the radar of most people and has been largely ignored by media, and escaped notice of
#QAnon. Strap yourselves in.
8a. I'm not going to talk in secret code. I'm not going to make you spend hours playing guessing games. I'm not going to give you just tiny scraps of information. I'm going to give you direct statements from the NSA's own files, then links to files, images and source documents.
8b. Under-the-radar Snowden revelation #1:
It is nonsense that the CIA & NSA are in competition. They are the left & right arm of the executive. NSA collects data, CIA acts on it.
Evidence one:
CIA gives awards to NSA employees:
(Sorry, the above should have been labelled 8e / revelation #4)
8g: Under-the-radar Snowden revelation #6:
The NSA are absolutely obsessed with not getting their budget cut. That is what they fear more than anything else. Shut down the $$? Shut down the tyranny.
Screenshot from: decipheryou.com/2016/11/18/ana'...
8h. Under-the-radar Snowden revelation #7
The NSA internally bragged about being responsible for the false intelligence presented to the UN that led to the Iraq War.
Screenshot from: decipheryou.com/2017/10/24/ana'...
Source links to 3 reference docs (appear in black text) on that page
8i. I could go on and on because there are hundreds of incredibly significant findings that the mainstream media have never reported on. Instead, here are a few videos of me discussing the findings:
1. With @LeeCamp on @RedactedTonight:
8j: Here is a 3 hour discussion where I debunked a ton of myths about Snowden and Assange:
9. But most importantly of all: call for the emancipation of Julian Assange & support whistleblowers!!
Last tweet of the thread :)
Thread Guide:
1: #QAnon: Pied Piper op
2. Phase 1: Establishing credibility
3. Phase 2: Making it spiritual
4. Phase 3: Shifting Targets
5. Methodologies
6. Indicators
7. Answering questions
8. Snowden revelations
9. Finish
Thank you for reading!
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TWITTER HORROR: Chelsea Manning Tweets Suicide Note and Picture of Herself on Ledge of a Tall Building
Mon, 28 May 2018 11:42
We report the truth - And leave the Russia-Collusion fairy tale to the Conspiracy media
by Alicia Powe May 27, 2018 Chelsea Manning tweeted a suicide note and a picture of herself standing on the edge of a tall building on Sunday night.Manning, a Democratic Senatorial candidate, posted what appeared to be a suicide note on Twitter around 8:30 PM on Sunday.Chelsea tweeted, ''I'm sorry '' I tried '' I'm sorry I let you all down '' I'm not really cut out for this world '' I tried adapting to this world out here but I failed you '' I couldn't do this anymore '' I can take people I don't know hating me but not my own friends '' I tried and I'm sorry about my failure''
Chelsea then posted a photo of herself on the outside ledge of a very tall building.This was absolutely frightening.
Following her suicidal tweets, a tweet from her account later said she is safe.The suicidal tweets were removed from her account.
** chelsea is safe. she is on the phone with friends, thanks everyone for your concern and please give her some space
'-- Chelsea E. Manning (@xychelsea) May 28, 2018
Chelsea Manning filed to run for a Senate seat in the state of Maryland in January.
Private First Class Bradley (Chelsea) Manning stole 251,000 State Department documents, many of them secret international embassy reports. Manning smuggled the security documents out on a CD labeled ''Lady Gaga.'' Manning was bitter after a breakup with his boyfriend.
Manning smuggled the information out of a secure facility on a CD.
In April 2014 a Kansas judge allowed Manning to change his name to ''Chelsea.''
Obama commuted Chelsea Manning's sentence in January 2017 before he left office and she left prison in 2017.
Intel accused of age discrimination - The Verge
Mon, 28 May 2018 11:36
Intel, one of the grand old statesmen of the tech world, is under investigation for potential age discrimination in its approach to layoffs initiated in 2016, according to a new Wall Street Journal report. At the heart of the matter is the perception and allegation that Intel sought to get rid of older employees and retain younger ones instead. That's good for the company, as older workers tend to be better paid, more aware and assertive of their rights, and more likely to have families and make use of company benefits '-- but such age bias is not something that US employers are allowed to engage in.
Intel claims 'personal demographics were not part of the process' when it decided to lay off 12,000
Two years ago, when announcing its layoffs and restructuring, Intel indicated that it would be a process that stretches into 2017 and would involve a mix of voluntary and involuntary redundancies. The WSJ reports that ''dozens of former employees sought legal advice on whether they could sue'' and some of them lodged complaints with the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), whose documentation of the Journal has seen.
For its part, Intel maintains that ''factors such as age, race, national origin, gender, immigration status, or other personal demographics were not part of the process when we made those decisions.'' And yet, the WSJ's review of Intel's own internal documents reveals that in one set of 2,300 layoffs, the median age was 49 years old, seven years older than the median age of the remaining staff.
It is now up to the EEOC to make a determination on the merits of the complaints that it has received. If the federal watchdog finds sufficient grounds to pursue the matter further, it can initiate a class-action lawsuit against Intel.
Intel's age discrimination case is becoming public only a couple of months after the publication of an exhaustive report into allegedly widespread age discrimination within IBM. It's ironic for companies like Intel and IBM, who are themselves among the oldest in the still-young computer industry, to be treating their more senior employees in this fashion. Then again, it's also logical that age discrimination would manifest itself most strongly at companies that have operated for many decades and have a staff of employees that have aged along with their employer.
American Journalist Held In The UK During Investigation Over Facebook Post
Mon, 28 May 2018 10:59
The story of an American journalist who has been held in the United Kingdom for the last five months while police investigate his Facebook post, gained traction after a video surfaced online on Feb. 1.
The video shows Ryan Dawson , a geopolitical analyst and activist and interviewing Rupert Quaintance , a political comedian, journalist and radio host at American Freedom Radio . Dawson began the interview by saying, ''This is a pretty crazy story.''
It commenced at the beginning of 2015 when a video appeared online of two children claiming to be the victims of sexual abuse at the hands of their father Ricky and several of their teachers, among other local people. The abuse is alleged to have taken place in Hampstead, commonly known as Hampstead Village, in London.
The children also alleged that they had been forced into participating in satanic rituals at the local Hampstead Parish Church during which, they claimed, babies were decapitated.
Videos of the children describing the alleged abuse were viewed online at least 4 million times, according to BBC Radio 4. The story had gone viral and the allegations were picked up by the national news.
[RELATED: Whistleblower Kids Exposing Alleged Pedophile Ring In School/Church Need Our Help]
A witch hunt sprung up, targeting nearly everyone alleged to have been involved. The names, addresses and telephone numbers of the alleged abusers and their families as well as 20 other children and their parents, social workers, clergymen, judges and churchgoers, were released online and some received threats , the BBC reported.
The local people of Hamstead and the people at the Church were not happy about all the harassment and negative press.
A short police investigation followed and in March 2015, a family court judge dismissed the claims that Ricky had led a ''satanic cult'' in north London and that he and other members carried out the abuse as ''baseless''. The judge concluded that the children had been forced to make the allegations by their mother, Ella and her new partner, Abe.
The children's father did an exclusive interview with the BBC. No charges were ever brought against him.
The case was now over but several local activists were not happy with the judgment and for four weeks protested outside the church. Shouts of ''stop killing babies!'' and ''child killer!'' could be heard outside the church. Sabine McNeill , one of the activists, went on the run but continued to promote the protest on her website.
Some of the activists were given restraining orders including McNeill and Belinda Makensy .
Quaintance heard about the allegations, decided to investigate and got in contact with the activists. He announced his plans online and was met with a barrage of threats and abuse from anonymous trolls. His home address was put online and his mother received online harassment.
Quaintance travelled to the UK in August 2016. After he arrived, he met with some of the activists and interviewed them. None of the interviews turned up any additional evidence. At this point, the online trolls were in a frenzy and threatened to kill Quaintance if he went to the church to investigate .
Quaintance's UK address was put online by the anonymous trolls after they managed to identify his location when they recognized the background in a YouTube video he'd put online.
On Aug. 31, Quaintance went to the church and filmed himself looking around outside. He found nothing out of the ordinary; the case was already dead. He posted these stills on Facebook five days later, on Sept. 5.
An anonymous troll jumped on this exchange with a friend, Clay Caricofe, took a screenshot and reported to the police that Quaintance was in the area right then, on the same day the local children's school term started, and might be carrying a knife.
However, he said he wasn't outside the church on Sept. 5, or carrying a knife. He was at home.
Rupert's friend explained to the police that the post refers to an inside joke between Quaintance and himself that referred to an incident involving a sandwich.
''We were at a restaurant after a concert, and I was boasting to another friend how athletic and accurate my throwing arm is and I was asked to prove it. So I took a ham biscuit wrapped in plastic wrap, balled it up and threw it at Rupert across the restaurant and, since my accuracy is excellent, hit Rupert in the back of the head approximately 40 to 50 feet away. I must say, everyone was fairly impressed. Even Rupert. We have been friends for a long time.''
In the interview, Quaintance explains that in hip hop music slang, a biscuit refers to a gun. He didn't want people to think he was carrying a gun.
In the UK, a biscuit is a cookie.
The UK police and court system are now using UK taxpayers' money to investigate this sandwich-related Facebook post.
On Sept. 13, Rupert was getting ready to leave when there was a knock at the door. It was the police and they arrested him for five charges of harassment with the intent of violence (the sandwich conversation) and two more charges of just harassment. His laptop that he uses to make a living was confiscated, along with his passport. If found guilty, he could face 5 years in prison.
He has no idea who he is being accused of threatening.
Quaintance has been to court twice and both times he has been harassed, face to face, by strangers who have been waiting there for him. The first time by a man who said he was going to hurt Quaintance after the hearing. The second time by a woman. Quaintance told the woman, ''I don't know who you are.'' She smiled at him and said, ''You're about to find out.''
Quaintance maintains, ''The simple fact of the matter is I didn't threaten anyone.''
He is still waiting to enter a plea of guilty or not guilty. The case has been adjourned twice. He is unable to work and is under a gag order. Quaintance desperately needs donations, although he has not asked for any. He said he'd rather people share his story and raise awareness anyway they can.
If you would like to donate to Quaintance, you can do so using your bank account and entering rwquaintance@gmail.com as the recipient, or by using PayPal.
What is really striking about the Hampstead case is the sheer amount of online material it generated, reminiscent of ''PizzaGate.'' It made the story easy to research. There are many YouTube videos, news articles and interviews and there is even a troll blog that is still reporting with undeniable delight on Rupert's every move and continuing distress.
WRC will stay in contact with Rupert and will work to keep you up-to-date with the story as it unfurls.
Media Collusion Book '
Sun, 27 May 2018 18:31
Life-Changing Media Literacy for OC Students
Do your kids have the ability to analyze and combat advertising strategies and be intentional about consumer choices?
Do they possess critical thinking skills that allow them to examine the motivations, economics and powers behind entertainment, news and advertising media?
They're not getting these skills in school.
Three Summer Courses to Choose From
Bi-Weekly and 1-Day Cram Sessions
4-Week Media Discovery
8 Hours Interactive Instruction
Free Course Textbook
Take-Home Experiments and Exercises
4-Week Program
2 Nights Per Week
1 Hour Per Night
Engaging Discussion Format
Multi-Media Integration with YouTube, Slides and Online Examples
Casual Round Table Environment
10 Students Per Class
Choose M/W or Tu/Th
Unlimited, lifetime access to private site resources and free future editions of the textbook
Command of Critical Media Concepts
3-Week Media Discovery
Deep Dive
12 Hours Interactive Instruction
Free Course Textbook
Take-Home Experiments and Exercises
3-Week Program
2 Nights Per Week
2 Hours Per Night
Dinner Provided
Engaging Discussion Format
Multi-Media Integration with YouTube, Slides and Online Examples
Casual Round Table Environment
10 Students Per Class
Choose M/W or Tu/Th
Unlimited, lifetime access to private site resources and free future editions of the textbook
Mind-Blowing Re-Orientation by Completion
1-Day Media Cram Session
8 Hours Interactive Instruction
Free Course Textbook
Take-Home Experiments and Exercises
1-Day Training
Healthy Breakfast, Lunch, Snacks and Drinks
Engaging Discussion Format
Multi-Media Integration with YouTube, Slides and Online Examples
Fast-Paced, Deep-Dive Round Table Environment
10 Students Per Class
Friday and Sunday Options
Unlimited, lifetime access to private site resources and free future editions of the textbook
Command of Critical Media Concepts
Today's media landscape is shaping and confusing the minds of young people at warp speed. Even adults trained in critical thinking and academic analysis get frustrated with the incessant noise and suspect claims that flow freely across the multi-channel, multi-device media world.
One of the big problems is that advertising and persuasion mechanisms are baked right into the product, and it's now easier than ever to insert it, track it, retarget consumers and generally dupe people into misinformed positions in order to cultivate:
Buying decisions
Political decisions
Medical decisions
Financial decisions
Lifestyle choices
And other related drivers of everyday living and long-term planning
The upcoming generation of consumers is facing some of the smartest, most irresistible messaging techniques in history.
The platforms that control information presentation algorithms have a significant amount of control, as well (Facebook, Google, Amazon, Apple).
By the time you finish this book and course you'll:
Have the ability to analyze and combat advertising strategies and be intentional about your consumer choices
Possess critical thinking skills that allow you to examine the motivations, economics and powers behind 1) entertainment, 2) news and 3) advertising media.
Have the ability to lucidly debate and explain the modern media landscape
Make better life decisions based on a clearer view of how the media world works
As you understand how the goals of digital media, print, broadcast, social media, advertising and influence groups are intertwined, you'll be able to guide your life choices and make more aware, less emotionally driven decisions (decisions that are often crafted by people outside of your own intentions, aspirations and goals).
You'll be able to understand and resist MEDIA COLLUSION.
If you or your kids want to learn about how the media works, this is the book for you. It's a thorough but very light and readable view into the world of advertising, internet tracking, TV history, mind control and all kinds of other fun stuff.
I'm a professional marketer and journalist with an M.A. in print journalism from the University of Southern California, a B.A. in history from UC Berkeley, and 23 years of marketing, reporting and publishing experience. My companies, QualityWriter and Synapse Services Co., help businesses tell their stories via digital marketing and content development strategies. I'm also the author of McGraw-Hill's best-selling eBay marketing book The 7 Essential Steps to Successful eBay Marketing.
I wrote Media Collusion and developed the companion course to teach my kids about the media and how it influences their lives. I have two sons, aged 15 and 13 at the time of this writing, and. . .
. . . continued
Media Collusion Book Reviews
This is a FANTASTIC read! I have been in the marketing industry for 28 years and have run Vision Media for the last 16 years. (Media Buying Firm) I wish I had this book for all of our clients and for our newest hires. In a time where shady advertising is all over the place, I bought two copies, one for my 18 year old that is heading to college and wants to be in advertising, and one for my Junior that wants to work at my company. Over my time, the industry has had tectonic shifts, and this is a great road map for my kids and anyone in the industry. I am hoping this will give my kids a leg up in college on what is really going on in the industry. Great stuff!
Steve R.
Finally '' an updated, accessible book on how the media and advertising work in today's web-connected world. I wish they taught this stuff in college.
Tim M.
I love the Mark Twain quote from the beginning of the book: ''If you don't read the newspaper you are uninformed, if you do read the newspaper you are misinformed.'' Easy read. Super in-depth information. It's rare that you learn this much from a book that's not bogged down in academic-speak.
Kate H.
If you or your kids want to learn about how the media works, this is the book for you. It's a thorough but very light and readable view into the world of advertising, internet tracking, TV history, mind control and all kinds of other fun stuff. What's really cool is that you can see examples on YouTube as you go through the text. Seems like absolutely every TV and advertising moment has been archived on YouTube!
Jeff H.
Finally a scholarly book on how to recognize fake news. Fun, easy read. And WOW! What an eye opener. I think I'm going to go on a media diet.
Justine A.
Great book. I gave it to my son so he can get insights into the media machine before he heads off to college. God knows what the tenured professors are teaching these days. Maybe he can argue with them better with a little expert/insider info.
Laura S.
Stakeholders in media are wagging the dog...Whenever I'm reading an article on Buzzfeed or have the TV news on in the background, I've got this little "media collusion" voice in the back of my head. The book got me thinking about how the sausage is made and how each of the media players (from influence groups and publishers to advertisers and YouTube stars) has a stake in the game.
Jason G.
I didn't realize media collusion ran so deep and just how coordinated it was. Phil Dunn's book just keeps the revelations coming, and it's never slow or boring. It's hard to conclude that one side of anything he explores (buying decisions, politics, financial options, lifestyle choices, etc.) is right or wrong. And I think that's good. It is great to know, however, what techniques are being deployed so that we don't get suckered by them. So, it's a fun read, an exciting read and an extremely useful read. I highly recommend it.
Jack F.
I'm teaching a mass media college course in the fall and was looking for something like this to supplement that class. This is an updated, accessible book on how the media and advertising work in today's web-connected world. The best part is the author's authentic voice. I wish they taught this stuff in college--oh that's right, I will be teaching it!
Lisa M.
If you or your kids want to learn about how the media works, this is the book for you. It's a thorough but very light and readable view into the world of advertising, internet tracking, TV history, mind control and all kinds of other fun stuff. What's really cool is that you can see examples on YouTube as you go through the text. Seems like absolutely every TV and advertising moment has been archived on YouTube!
Tom T.
If the Fonz could make people get library cards, who knows what the Internet is doing. Excellent treatment of today's ''hot-button'' topic. I'm going to recommend this book for curriculum at my daughter's school. The teachers might learn something, too. I sure did.
John P.
Money, money, money and mo money. The whole media system laid out in the book makes you think long and hard about who the real suckers are. It's us! Great advice: "Follow the money"
Scot L.
Very good read. The examples within are an education, too. I never knew Archie Bunker and Meathead were feeding me propaganda! °Ÿ‰
Michael B.
Five stars. This is a really great tool and resource. Easy to read and loaded with practical wisdom.
Pam W.
Really interesting insights from people who actually work in the advertising, marketing, social media marketing, and media worlds. I'm going to refer back to this every time I see something suspicious on the web or on the boob tube.
Victoria T.
Classroom: 200 Promontory Drive West, Newport Beach (upstairs clubhouse and conference room)
VIDEO - Apple Digital Health to fight iPhone addiction - report
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 15:09
Adam Jeffery | CNBC
Tim Cook, CEO of Apple Inc.
Next Monday during its developer conference Apple will introduce a new feature for iPhones and iPads called "Digital Health," Bloomberg said on Thursday.
Digital Health '-- said to launch as part of Apple's new iOS 12 operating system '-- will reportedly help users manage how much time they spend on their iPhones and iPads with tools that show how long users spend inside apps, according to Bloomberg.
Apple will add other features, including new tools for tracking the stock market, Bloomberg said.
Google introduced similar features when it unveiled the new version of Android, currently named Android P, earlier this month. Android P has an app dashboard that will show users how much time they spend inside each app. It will also let Android users set time limits for apps, which means users won't be able to access them after they've used them for a predetermined time during the day. Android P will introduce a "Do Not Disturb" mode that silences all notifications and a "Wind Down" function that turns the phone grayscale at a predetermined time so that people can prepare to go to sleep at night.
Apple typically announces the new version of its operating system during its developer conference and then rolls it out to consumers in the fall. Apple was not immediately available to comment.
Read the full report on Bloomberg.
VIDEO - Companies And Regulators Move Toward Full Ban On Plastic Straws To Help Alleviate Pileup : NPR
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 14:56
Plastic straws make up an alarming percentage of waste around the world. Bon Appetit, a large food service company, announced Thursday it is banning plastic straws in all 1,000 of its cafes across the U.S.
To another story now. Today Bon Appetit, a large food service company, announced it is banning plastic straws in all 1,000 of its cafes across the U.S. That would include locations like AT&T Park, home of the San Francisco Giants. This is the latest salvo in a growing war against plastic straws.
And here to tell us more about that is NPR food editor Maria Godoy. Hey, Maria.
MARIA GODOY, BYLINE: Hey, Mary Louise.
KELLY: So why this ban? Why straws?
GODOY: So there's something like 270,000 metric tons of plastic in our oceans. And straws are actually a pretty big chunk of that, so they're kind of an obvious choice. Most of us don't really need straws. We tend to use them because they're there.
KELLY: Although I'm thinking I just ate my salad for lunch today with a plastic fork, which probably isn't very good for the environment either. Why are straws being singled out for this ban?
GODOY: Well, environmentalists have actually been telling us that plastic straws are taking a big toll for years. But there was this video that went viral in 2015, and it's pretty hard to watch. It shows a sea turtle with a straw stuck up its nose and researchers trying to remove it. Let's listen to a clip.
UNIDENTIFIED PERSON #1: I don't want to pull it if it's, like, attached to her brain stem.
UNIDENTIFIED PERSON #2: Yeah, that's what - exactly what I think. So it's a freaking straw up her freaking nostril.
UNIDENTIFIED PERSON #1: That's plastic.
UNIDENTIFIED PERSON #3: How could that have possibly got lodged so firmly in a nostril?
KELLY: Oh, poor turtle.
GODOY: It's pretty heartbreaking. And you know, like, one of the reasons it's lodged up there is because of the shape of the straw. It let it go all the way back in its nostril. This was just, like, a really, really graphic way of bringing home the fact that plastics and plastic straws are taking a huge toll on sea life and really on the planet.
KELLY: All right, we're talking to you about this today because of this move by Bon Appetit, the food service company. Are other companies, other cities, other governments following suit in the campaign against straws?
GODOY: Yeah, it's actually really heating up. In just the last week, a New York City councilman introduced a bill to ban plastics from the city's restaurants. Cities like Malibu and Miami have banned plastic straws. There's a couple of colleges - have actually banned them. And even Alaska Airlines said this month that it's going to eliminate straws and stirrers on all of its flights.
KELLY: I've started noticing at restaurants when I'm eating out that there are straw dispensers, and they're empty, and there's a sign on them saying, we're not offering these. They're only on request now.
GODOY: Right, exactly. And that's a bigger movement, too, because the idea that if you have to ask for them, you have to think about it. And they want you to think about the toll that that request takes.
KELLY: What about outside the U.S.? There are moves underway in other parts of the world?
GODOY: Yeah, actually, a lot is happening in Europe. The European Commission has this big proposal that would target not just straws but other plastics like utensils and plates - basically, like, the top 10 commonly found plastics on beaches.
KELLY: So my salad fork is about to be out.
GODOY: Exactly. And what's interesting about this proposal is it has teeth. Some of the companies that make these disposable products would be required to pay for cleanup and waste management and for awareness campaigns because the goal is to make everyone think more about the toll that our reliance on disposables is taking on the planet.
KELLY: NPR's Maria Godoy - thanks so much, Maria.
GODOY: Thank you.
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VIDEO - Puerto Rico's Health Department Is Being Sued To Release Its Data On Deaths Following Hurricane Maria
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 14:50
The Puerto Rico Institute of Statistics filed a lawsuit Thursday against the island's health department and demographic registry in order to obtain the government's data on the number of deaths following Hurricane Maria.
The legal action comes days after a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine put the death toll at nearly 6,000. The government's official death count is 64.
In the filing, the Institute of Statistics asks the court for the immediate release of the 2017 mortality data and urges the court to compel "the Secretary of Health and the Director of the Demographic Registry to comply fully ... under penalty of civil contempt."
The institute's executive director, Mario Marazzi-Santiago, told BuzzFeed News that accurate data is desperately needed so that the government can prevent deaths during this hurricane season, which began on Friday.
He said if the data were public, experts from around the world could analyze where people were dying most frequently after a hurricane, and why.
"So that in the aftermath, in the very immediate recovery of a hurricane, in the first two or three months after something like Hurricane Maria, we can save lives '-- we can prevent deaths that are preventable. That is our main motivation here," Marazzi-Santiago said.
The institute's board approved a resolution on April 25 to establish new procedures and "methodological norms" to measure the death toll from Hurricane Maria and future disasters, given the apparent lack of a clear methodology from the Department of Public Safety and Department of Health. But to get those measures in place, they needed data from the island's Department of Health and Demographic Registry.
Marazzi-Santiago said all requests for the data went unanswered by the health department, the Demographic Registry, and the governor.
"We requested the information formally, and then we subpoenaed the information. All of our requests have gone unanswered, and so we have proceeded to do the next thing that happens in these cases," he said.
After the Harvard study published in the New England Journal of Medicine this week, Gov. Ricardo Rossell" said his administration wants "the real number to come out."
"We had a protocol that really was subpar, and we recognize it. And now really, towards the future, we want to make sure that it is effective."
Marazzi-Santiago said making the mortality data publicly available is a crucial step toward addressing those problems.
On CNN on Thursday night, Rossell" was also questioned about his government's refusal to share the data with the Harvard researchers.
"I signed an executive order whereby this data is being accessible. We've opened the books," he said, adding, "I will look into it and if it's true, there will be hell to pay."
The executive order Rossell" referred to announced that the Puerto Rican government commissioned a study by George Washington University, but did not release any data publicly or to any group other than the GWU researchers.
"I think it's good news," said Marazzi-Santiago, in response to Rossell"'s comments. "Hopefully he'll come through. We'll see. I am a little surprised he's surprised, but it's possible, I suppose. The governor is a very busy person, but my understanding is that there is already a previous lawsuit and it wasn't done by me."
"With regards to 'There will be hell to pay,' great '-- that is exactly the attitude we need, and I hope he applies it to the folks who have this data," he said.
The institute is also under threat from the Rossell" administration's cost-cutting plans, which propose to dismantle the agency and instead establish a statistics program within the Department of Economic Development and Commerce (DEDC). It would also eliminate the agency's independent board of directors.
"We were created not so that we have the data but so that everyone has the data, reporters included," Marazzi-Santiago said. He said the controversy over the death toll reiterates the need for an independent body like the institute, which is funded by the government but is independent in its charter and board of directors.
This is not the first time that the Puerto Rican government has been sued in a bid for transparency about Hurricane Maria's devastation on the island. In February, the Center for Investigative Journalism (CPI) also sued the Puerto Rico Demographic Registry for statistical information on the number of deaths in the months following the storm.
As far back as early October, BuzzFeed News reached out to Puerto Rico's Department of Health, which oversees the Demographic Register, and the governor's office to ask about the apparent discrepancies between the official death toll and what sources on the ground were telling us.
The lawsuit also requests that the government publish monthly mortality totals, which it has not been doing since the hurricane. Marazzi-Santiago said they're not just asking for hurricane-related death data but general data about deaths, which should be public information.
"If all these things were done, we would be in a better position to inform reporters, inform the federal government, inform researchers, to prevent deaths in the aftermath of any future hurricane," Marazzi-Santiago said.
A spokesperson for Puerto Rico's Department of Health and a spokesperson for the governor's office did not immediately return requests for comment.
Ellie Hall is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Washington, DC.
Contact Ellie Hall at ellie.hall@buzzfeed.com.
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VIDEO - VIDEO : Stage set for shareholders' revolt at Facebook | Euronews
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 14:40
At the company's annual AGM six shareholder proposals, all opposed by Facebook, could end Zuckerberg's dominance at the helm of his company.
Read full article
VIDEO - VIDEO : Trump tariffs could 'destroy' EU's steel industry | Euronews
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 14:36
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VIDEO - Visa systems operating at 'full capacity' as firm apologises for system failure - Independent.ie
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 14:25
Visa said the issue was not associated with any unauthorised access or cyber attack Large queues for ATM's on O'Connell St.(Stock image)Visa has apologised after a system failure prevented card payments across the UK and Europe.
The company said it "fell well short" of its goal to ensure cards work reliably at all times following problems on Friday afternoon.
Visa users complained about the issue, which was the result of a hardware failure, on social media.
A Visa spokesman said on Friday night: "Earlier today, Visa had a system failure that impacted customers across Europe.
"Our goal is to ensure all Visa cards work reliably 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
"We fell well short of this goal today and we apologise to all of our partners and, most especially, to Visa cardholders."
The payment system was said to be operating at "close to normal levels" by 10.30pm on Friday, but Visa Europe posted a statement on its website in the early hours of Saturday to say the problems had been resolved.
It said: "Visa Europe's payment system is now operating at full capacity, and Visa account holders can now use Visa for any of their purchases and at ATMs, as they normally would."
The issue was not associated with any unauthorised access or cyber attack, the statement added.
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Sun, 03 Jun 2018 13:53
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VIDEO - YouTube
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 13:35
VIDEO - MSNBC's Joy Reid takes to the air, does not address newest round of controversy
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 12:56
Joy Reid was back to business as usual on her Saturday show, a day after she apologized again and MSNBC stood by her despite calling recently unearthed blog posts "hateful and hurtful." The MSNBC host did not address the controversy on her two-hour program, "AM Joy," which airs Saturday and Sunday mornings.
In her apology Friday, Reid said, "While I published my blog, starting in 2005, I wrote thousands of posts in real time on the issues of the day."
"There are things I deeply regret and am embarrassed by, things I would have said differently and issues where my position has changed. Today I'm sincerely apologizing again," she said.
This week, BuzzFeed reported on a post that included a photoshopped image of Senator John McCain's head on the body of the shooter in the 2007 Virginia Tech massacre.
BuzzFeed also wrote a piece about a 2006 post in which Reid promoted the 9/11 conspiracy film, "Loose Change." Other outlets have dug in as well, dredging up several old posts that contain controversial rhetoric about border security and CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer's coverage of Israel.
Related: MSNBC host Joy Reid apologizes for incendiary old blog posts
MSNBC' statement Friday said Reid's past statements do not reflect her current beliefs.
"Some of the things written by Joy on her old blog are obviously hateful and hurtful," the statement reads. "They are not reflective of the colleague and friend we have known at MSNBC for the past seven years. Joy has apologized publicly and privately and said she has grown and evolved in the many years since, and we know this to be true.
In April, Reid, a popular commentator among liberals, used her MSNBC show "AM Joy" to address other controversial blog posts that had surfaced '-- and her assertion that some of the posts were the work of a hacker. She opened her April 30 show with a lengthy statement and apology for past homophobic remarks. She also hosted a panel on LGBTQ issues.
Related: MSNBC host Joy Reid takes heat for newly unearthed 9/11 conspiracy posts
That mea culpa followed a week of heightened scrutiny, not only over her blog posts, but also the claim that her blog had been hacked. Reid hired a cybersecurity expert and her attorney said the FBI had opened its own probe into the alleged hacking. The hacking claims were scrutinized by several media outlets, including CNNMoney.
On Apirl 30, Reid said she "genuinely" does not believe she wrote some of the posts, though she acknowledged cybersecurity experts haven't been able to prove they were posted by a hacker.
MSNBC declined to comment Saturday about the hacking claim or the status of the FBI investigation. Reid's attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
'-- CNN's Tom Kludt contributed to this report.
CNNMoney (New York) First published June 2, 2018: 12:36 PM ET
VIDEO - Apple and Google smartphone addiction controls won't help
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 12:43
Todd Haselton | CNBC
I'm addicted to my smartphone.
Hi, my name is Todd Haselton and I'm a smartphone addict.
Apple and Google are launching new tools that are supposed to help me and people like me fight this addiction, but I don't think they're going to work.
Google's new version of Android that will launch this fall with a "Digital Wellness" feature and Bloomberg reported on Thursday that Apple will do the same with the next version of its iPhone and iPad software.
Google will soon show consumers how much time they spend in an app on an Android phone -- which might shock some people into using some apps less frequently. It will also let you set controls for how long you can use an app. Apple is reportedly going to launch a similar feature called "Digital Health."
Here's the problem with smartphone addiction, and I think it applies pretty broadly to a lot of us: Sometimes we just pick up our phones and turn on the screen for no reason at all. Maybe I'll open Instagram or check Twitter, or check my email for the 30th time in the last hour. Putting a timer on apps isn't going to stop that -- I'll just open a different one, or turn off the time limit controls completely.
Without using too extreme of a metaphor, this solution is sort of like a coffee distributor giving us the option to have fewer cups of coffee. The coffee maker tells you how many cups you consume each day -- you're shocked at how much it is -- and then tells you that you can have fewer cups if you want to. You can tell the coffee maker to stop serving you at a certain limit but, with a wink, still get another cup anyway.
People who are addicted to things don't want to stop doing them. Or, often, they don't even admit they're addicted in the first place.
The tools might be there to help you quit, but will you use them? If you're obsessed with opening Twitter to stay on top of the news, or your email account, are you really going to put in the controls to limit how often you can use that app? Parents might do this for kids, but will adults use it? I don't think I will{.
What does this do to our productivity? I need to use a lot of apps very frequently for work, and they're the ones that often pull me back to my smartphone in the first place. "Sorry boss, I couldn't check my email last night because I'm trying to fight my smartphone addiction." "No, I didn't see your Slack message because Google told me I already used Slack too much today."
I don't think that's going to go over well. [Editor's note: He's right.]
I applaud Google and Apple for attempting to address a problem that's very real. I'm tired of sitting through dinners where friends constantly pull up their phones -- and I can be just as guilty. But what can Apple and Google do better? I don't even know if there's much in their control. After all, they're the ones selling the addiction. Perhaps there's an incentive-based solution that could work, like credits to the Google Play or iTunes App Store when we use our phones less, but I doubt that will happen.
We need to learn to turn off our phones or leave them behind at home. If it's for doing our jobs, we need workplaces that encourage us to put our phones away at a certain time. At the very least, we need to admit we're addicted in the first place.
VIDEO - A POTUS tweet and a dare accepted... | GOP
Sun, 03 Jun 2018 00:01
This morning, many in the media were up in arms over President Trump tweeting that he was ''looking forward'' to the jobs numbers ahead of their release.
They were fuming mad with this supposedly ''illegal,'' ''unprecedented,'' and ''break of protocol'' comment.
Here are just a few examples:
MSNBC's Stephanie Ruhle was outraged by the tweet, calling it ''unprecedented'' and ''quite a bid deal.''Former Obama econ advisor Austan Goolsbee stated on CNBC and twitter that President Trump may have broken the law.Reporters from major newspapers criticized POTUS for ''break[ing] protocol'' and sending ''markets a clear signal on jobs report before numbers are released.''CNN's John King said ''I dare you. Go back and look. Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Barack Obama. Find a President of the United States talking about, tweeting about, communicating about the unemployment report before it came out. I dare you,'' and then hosted a panel that slammed the President for his tweet.Dare accepted.
Here just a few examples of the Obama admin commenting on the next day's jobs report , and actually giving up far more info than President Trump did this morning:
As President, in February 2009, President Obama said, ''Tomorrow we're expecting another dismal jobs report on top of the 2.6 million jobs that we lost last year.'' He repeated the same statement later that day.In March 2009, Obama Press Secretary Robert Gibbs predicted bad news in the next day's jobs report.I dare you to find me an example of the media freaking out then'...
Economy Jobs, Wages and Unemployment
VIDEO - YouTube Obama jobs prediction
Sat, 02 Jun 2018 23:53
VIDEO - Watch The Video Soros Doesn't Want You To See
Sat, 02 Jun 2018 15:01
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VIDEO - MRS.G_ozzy#FreeTommyRobinsonNow on Twitter: "@manny_ottawa @FiveRights @mmccdenier @EhRadioCanada @adamcurry https://t.co/b5veQtd3aD"
Sat, 02 Jun 2018 13:27
Enter a topic, @name, or fullname
VIDEO - Nationwide Paintball Wars Causing Concern For Baltimore Police '' CBS Baltimore
Sat, 02 Jun 2018 04:17
BALTIMORE (WJZ)'' Nationwide, police are tackling a new type of gun violence. Hundreds of paintball shootings have been reported in multiple states, and now it's picking up in Baltimore.
''Guns Down, Paint Balls Up'' is a movement that was intended to curb gun violence.
''It started in Atlanta, with a rapper who started putting things on YouTube and Instagram,'' said Milwaukee Police Sgt. Melissa Franckowiak.
Police say Atlanta-based rapper 21 Savage's campaign against firearms may have backfired '-- they've linked at least two deaths to paintball wars.
In April, 3-year-old T'Rhigi Diggs was shot while he slept in the back of his mother's car in Milwaukee. Police say he was killed by a teen who fired a handgun at people shooting paintballs.
''My baby's really strong, my baby fight for his life almost 45 minutes before the ambulance got there,'' said Roshanda Craig, T'Rhigi's mother.
Weeks later, another death, 19-year-old Zyquarius Bradley who was shot and killed in Greensboro. His body found next to a car covered with paintballs.
Baltimore police say it's also a concern in the city.
''These guns look real, an officer pulled over a vehicle because they saw a rifle sticking out of the window of a vehicle, and they get up and find out it's a paintball gun,'' said Baltimore police spokesman T.J. Smith. ''It's something we want to get in front of, and let people know it is illegal, it is something we are taking seriously.''
People caught firing a paintball gun could face disorderly conduct or other criminal charges.
Follow @CBSBaltimore on Twitter and like WJZ-TV | CBS Baltimore on Facebook
VIDEO - Lift the Veil: A True Collusion Story - Trump, Putin, Israel & Chabad
Sat, 02 Jun 2018 02:53
I remember Putin stating the following as revealed in the following links; 'A couple of months ago in a live interview, Putin said: ''So a person is elected, he comes with his ideas. Then people with briefcases come to visit him, well dressed, in dark suits, kind of like mine. Except instead of a red tie it's black or navy. And then they explain what to do, and the whole rhetoric changes, you see? This happens from one administration to the next.''' http://www.collective-evolution.com/2017/08/09/the-russian-president-prime-minister-both-mention-the-men-in-black-who-are-these-people/ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XP3D1sUSuzg So even when these people like Putin are bang at it themselves, blatantly '... Read more >>
VIDEO - YouTube's top creators are burning out and breaking down en masse - Polygon
Sat, 02 Jun 2018 02:49
poly-lt-wire-logo Rub(C)n ''El Rubius'' Gundersen talking about his mental health and burnout. Rub(C)n ''El Rubius'' Gundersen/ YouTube 'This is all I've ever wanted. Why am I so unhappy?'hThree weeks ago, Bobby Burns, a YouTuber with just under one million subscribers, sat down on a rock in Central Park to talk about a recent mental health episode. One week ago, Elle Mills, a creator with more than 1.2 million subscribers, uploaded a video that included vulnerable footage during a breakdown. Six days ago, Rub(C)n ''El Rubius'' Gundersen, the third most popular YouTuber in the world with just under 30 million subscribers, turned on his camera to talk to his viewers about the fear of an impending breakdown and his decision to take a break from YouTube.
Burns, Mills and Gundersen aren't alone. Erik ''M3RKMUS1C'' Phillips (four million subscribers), Benjamin ''Crainer'' Vestergaard (2.7 million subscribers) and other top YouTubers have either announced brief hiatuses from the platform, or discussed their own struggles with burnout, in the past month. Everyone from PewDiePie (62 million subscribers) to Jake Paul (15.2 million subscribers) have dealt with burnout. Lately, however, it seems like more of YouTube's top creators are coming forward with their mental health problems.
Constant changes to the platform's algorithm, unhealthy obsessions with remaining relevant in a rapidly growing field and social media pressures are making it almost impossible for top creators to continue creating at the pace both the platform and audience want '-- and that can have a detrimental effect on the very ecosystem they belong to.
''Why the fuck am I so unfucking unhappy?''''My life just changed so fast,'' Elle Mills said in a video from May 18. ''My anxiety and depression keeps getting worse and worse. I'm literally just waiting for me to hit my breaking point.''
Part of her seven-minute confession includes a glimpse of her breakdown, wherein she's trying to figure out what's going on in her mind. Mills says:
This is all I ever wanted. And why the fuck am I so unfucking unhappy? It - It doesn't make any sense. You know what I mean? Because, like, this is literally my fucking dream. And I'm fucking so unfucking happy. It doesn't make any fucking sense. It's so stupid. It is so stupid.
Soon after, Mills announced on Twitter that she was taking a break from YouTube and social media. She couldn't keep up with the pressure, and told her fans that while she was safe, and in good hands, she needed time to recuperate and remember why she loved making videos in the first place.
Sam Sheffer, a popular YouTuber who burst into the spotlight after appearing in multiple Casey Neistat videos, recently took a break from Twitter for similar reasons. In his own video, Neistat addressed Mills's questions about why she was so unhappy when everything she ever wanted was finally coming together.
''I've often talked about the pressures of being a YouTuber and it's a tricky thing to talk about because to find success on YouTube is to live the dream,'' Neistat said. ''Like, this is the ultimate. And if you achieve this kind of success on this platform, which so many people try to do, like, how dare you complain about it? It is difficult to talk about because unless you've been in this position, I think it's challenging to empathize with it.''
The pull of the YouTube ''schedule''The backlash to YouTubers and Twitch streamers who publicly take time away from the spotlight shows its face in almost any comments section about mental health and creators. Their fans are mostly supportive, telling their favorite creators to take time and work on their mental health, but most people who don't keep up with the day-to-day uploads or aren't as tuned in to YouTube culture have trouble sympathizing. Here are just a few comments lifted from a recent Polygon article about YouTubers and mental health:
''It's as if their fun hobby that they turned into a career came with all the trappings of having a career.''
''Of course every job is challenging but bruh, you're at home, no kids, in front of some camera with this fake cheery persona. Your serious challenges involve a steady schedule and demonstrating your internet personality for the dollars? Please. Thats the line of work you chose. No different than a private dancer. Find another job if its such a problem.''
''So they're saying their get-rich-quick scheme isn't as easy as they initially thought it would be?''
''Yeah, hard to really sympathize. Boo hoo, I work harder than you think! Umm, is someone holding a gun to your head? No, so if it's too hard find something else to do. Good grief.
Fact of the matter is, if they didn't enjoy it or like the money they were making, they'd be doing something else. They act like they're in prison doing forced manual labor.''
''Gee I never get burned out at my job ever. That doesn't happen to me or billions of other people every day.''
There's a pressure for YouTubers to remain in the spotlight. This is something that PewDiePie, who uploads at least once a day, has said the rigorous pace of YouTube video creation led him to his own obsessions with the platform. Those obsessions turn into eventual dismay over producing and not enjoying the one thing that made him successful.
''I think I have a pretty high tolerance of stress but it just got worse when I came here,'' he said in a November 2016 video. ''I'm really sorry ... it really sucks for me. I've always put YouTube first, always. Even if I'm working on other projects, it doesn't matter. You guys come first, that's my main thing. But I can't do that while I'm here ... keeping the vlogs up is just impossible at this point.''
Katrina Gay, national director for strategic partnerships at the National Alliance on Mental Illness, told Polygon in January that burnout in highly competitive, creative and front-facing fields like YouTube is common. There are ways to try and avoid it, Gay said, including setting proper hours and finding a way to leave work at work. But when the careers of so many video personalities involve exposing their personal lives, striking a work/life balance is next to impossible.
''No one tells you how many hours you should be working,'' Gay said in our interview. ''You have to discover that for yourself. Maybe it's after the fact, when you've realized, 'I've overdone it and I'm not as healthy as I should be.' You have to pause. The process of learning how to do that and when to do it is tough, but necessary. When people are learning to do that right in front of you, like YouTube, it's modeling healthy behavior for an entire community.''
That's the position that Rub(C)n ''El Rubius'' Gundersen found himself this week. Gundersen said he could feel the pressure building for years, but never really took time off to address it. Recently, however, his panic attacks have become more frequent. Gundersen went to visit a doctor and, after learning how to cope with his ongoing mental health issues made worse by burnout, knew he needed to stop.
''I think what I need is to leave for some time, to disconnect a little bit from all of this,'' Gundersen said in his May 24 video. ''I've been doing this for seven years without stopping, without being able to see how I am living from the outside. I always have in my mind what's going to be next; the next trips, the next project, and it sounds like first world problems I know, but when you get everything together and you want it to be 100 percent, and give 100 percent, some times you can't.''
The fallout from YouTube due to mental health concerns is a scary trend. Especially when YouTubers and streamers, like Tyler ''Ninja'' Blevins talk about the schedule they voluntarily keep.
''The schedule is: 9:30 is when I start in the morning and then I play until four, so that's like six, six-and-a-half hours,'' Blevins told Ethan and Hila Klein on the H3H3 Podcast. ''Then I'll take a nice three- to four-hour break with the wife, the dogs or family '-- we have like family nights, too '-- and then come back on around seven o'clock central until like two, three in the morning. The minimum is 12 hours a day, and then I'll sleep for less than six or seven hours.''
What YouTube is doing about burnout YouTubers make almost all of their money from AdSense on YouTube, and projects or merchandise related to YouTube. This creates a pressure to upload a video every single day; to see consistent reach and maintain their positions as top creators among a sea of growing competition, creators have to effectively game the system.
This is where the algorithm grade comes in. The algorithm grade is the best working theory YouTubers work under when it comes to ensuring their videos are seen by as many people as possible. There are a bunch of little tricks that make up the algorithm grade (videos should be longer than 10 minutes, for example), but one of the most important details is frequency. It is strongly believed that YouTube accounts with more than 10,000 subscribers should post daily because YouTube's algorithm favors frequency and engagement.
So people upload, and upload, and upload, and upload, building a bigger fanbase and working non stop. And then the consequences of that hustle hit them like a ton of bricks.
''Relevancy'' is the word that keeps almost every YouTuber on the tip of their toes, but it's not the only source of strain. There are also growing demonetization concerns running rampant throughout the community. Posting infrequently means a creator's videos won't be recommended. Videos that aren't recommended aren't as heavily watched. The last problem a creator wants to worry about is their videos not appearing or being shared because of frequency issues when already trying to skirt around YouTube's growing advertising restrictions.
''It's really frustrating to be a creator on YouTube because we don't really know what's going on,'' PewDiePie said in a video about demonetization and views suppression. ''I think YouTube is so scared of telling people what's going on for media outrage and for people abusing the system, so they don't generally keep us in the loop.''
Not knowing how YouTube's monetization system works, while also battling fears of videos being suppressed and less frequent uploads hindering their careers, are major anxieties. And like most anxieties that go untreated, they build up to a breaking point.
The issue is that unlike many of us who have bosses or coworkers who tell us to take time off, no one is telling YouTubers to chill out. It's the opposite. People constantly ask for more, and there's only so much that one person can offer.
YouTube offers no clear support system for creators, nor is it clear if the company has offered professional help to some of its top creators who've made their burnout public. Instead, YouTube's only direct reaction is a playlist dedicated to burnout and mental health. The creators are essentially working until they no longer physically can, and apologizing to their fans after believing they've failed. Polygon has reached out to YouTube for more information about services that are provided to creators.
The only way to beat burnout is to take breaks. Unfortunately, for many YouTubers, those breaks are rarely planned.
VIDEO - YouTube 9/11 unseen
Fri, 01 Jun 2018 04:35
VIDEO - Elizabeth Warren on Twitter: "This morning I spoke with @TheView about the horrifying reports of migrant children being separated from their parents. Let's be clear: This is a Trump Admin policy. @realDonaldTrump could change it right now if he
Thu, 31 May 2018 09:36
Replying to
@elizabethforma @TheView @realDonaldTrump Yeah we've been sending young kids to sponsors, or keeping them in gov't facilities, not losing them, for some time. Not his fault. BUT they were unaccompanied. They weren't being taken away, and housed separately, from parents. That's the policy straw that broke the camel's back
VIDEO - YouTube How to manipulate standards - Daniel J. Bernstein
Thu, 31 May 2018 04:13
VIDEO - YouTube
Thu, 31 May 2018 03:45
VIDEO - YouTube
Wed, 30 May 2018 23:49
VIDEO - Study: There are now more dogs than children in east Austin - KXAN
Wed, 30 May 2018 03:54
AUSTIN (KXAN) -- The Institute for Urban Policy Research Analysis at the University of Texas at Austin found dogs now outnumber children in east Austin nearly two to one, a statistic they say is a signifier that gentrification is alive and well there.
They did their research on either side of the Texas State Cemetery in Census tract 901 and bloc group 1, asking people whether they had dogs or children. The study found the number of children under the age of 17 falls well below the city and regional averages.
"A profound absence of children, not an abundance of dogs, explains the disparity. Dog ownership rates in the neighborhood appear to be on par with national averages," the researchers wrote in their findings. "Moreover, one can assume that the majority of these losses were among children of color."
They surveyed 55 percent of eligible households in the neighborhood, finding 116 dogs and 66 children. Additionally, of the 171 houses they surveyed, 40 percent of them had neither dogs nor children.
MORE: City moves to protect homeowners from predatory home flipping The researchers noted that between 2000-2010, the neighborhood's black population decreased by 60 percent, its Latino population decreased by 33 percent and its white population increased by 442 percent.
They reported that Austin was the only fast-growing major city in the U.S. to show a decline in African Americans between 2000 and 2010.
The research, which was published this spring, documented a trend of longtime east Austin families and communities of color being pushed out of the area. It was during these interviews that they heard neighbors saying that dogs outnumbered children, which prompted them to start this second part of their research.
"We went into east Austin and really just went door to door," explained UT student Kat Daffin, who contributed to the research.
UT graduate Olivia Sullings contributed as well and explained that 76 percent of the homes in the east Austin neighborhood bloc they surveyed were without children.
"When you say it right off, it kind of seems like almost an attack at the newcomers '-- eccentric dog owners '-- but it's not that at all, it's just the severe lack of children," she said.
"So the loss of children in certain sectors of the city doesn't make sense if the rest of the city is growing at a rapid clip," said Eric Tang, associate professor of Black Studies at UT, who led this research.
Tang hopes that city leaders have an "elevated sense of urgency" to improve Austin's affordability after hearing about these findings.
"The existing housing that is being built at the market is not attracting families with children," Tang explained, noting that after looking at Austin Independent School District data, they found that out of the 1,900 Austin apartment units built in the last several years, only six children were living in those units.
"The only way to see more children in east Austin see more families in east Austin is if more affordable housing is built and existing affordable housing maintained," Tang said.
The earlier research they published has prompted the Austin City Council to consider a "Right to Return Policy" which would try to reverse the tide of gentrification by adding affordable housing and working to incentivize families who have been pushed out of the east side to move back.
"I think that's a very important policy, but in order for it to not just be symbolic, it has to go hand in hand with affordable housing," Tang said, noting that even if people have protections that help them move back, they'll need to be able to afford living there for the long term.
People who grew up in or presently live in east Austin tell KXAN they are already noticing the impacts of this lack of families.
Erika Jasper, who grew up in east Austin in the 1970s and lives there currently, said that children today have a much different experience.
"We would play basketball on the street, ride the bikes on the street, we were a family, the neighborhood was a family," Jasper said, describing her childhood as "really fun."
Now, she estimates that in any given hour, she'll see five dogs outside, but no children out playing.
"They walk their dog, their dog is in our yard using our grass as their deposit spot," she laughed.
"More than that there's not really the unity," she added. "The kindness, I mean people walk up the street, ride their bikes and may not even speak or say hello."
She believes these changes go along with the disappearance of places that were community landmarks in her childhood.
These changes are especially significant for black Austin families like Jasper's. East Austin was racially segregated in 1928, under Jim Crow laws which aimed to bring black residents to one area.
For decades, black Austinites developed thriving communities that endured east of where I-35 now runs.
"It kind of bothers me because my kids won't experience what I experienced, I have to describe to them what I experienced growing up," she said. Jasper goes out of their way to teach her children the history of black Austinites and to take them to black cultural centers in town, but notes that they see fewer kids who look like them in school.
Jasper said she couldn't afford to live in east Austin on her own and moved to Pflugerville. She more recently moved back to the neighborhood so that she could care for her grandparents and says she can only afford to live there because her grandparents already own the home.
"The first thing I look at, because I was a single parent for years, is how much my rent is gonna be? How much are my bills were gonna be?" Jasper said. "I believe one of the steps to bring people back to east Austin is the housing."
Bertha Marie Delgado, who is an activist on behalf of East Austin Schools and Children, agreed that a big piece of the puzzle is finding a way to ensure more affordable housing for east Austin.
"What we're seeing is we're losing our homes and losing our families, next we will be losing our schools and losing our parks," said Delgado who explained she's been seeing this decline for 10 years now.
Delgado noted that Metz, the east Austin elementary school she attended, has been impacted by this declining youth population.
She added that there are plans in the not too distant future to add more affordable housing to east Austin and she hopes that those plans are factored into the bigger picture of how students are enrolled in and transported to east Austin schools.
Austin's city leaders have been actively using this UT data to help them with policies. Their research guided the anti-displacement plan additions to CodeNEXT which the planning commission just passed.
Conor Kenny, a planning commissioner who helped spearhead the anti-displacement plan, said the commission recommends that council work to protect the entire "Eastern Crescent" of Austin from the pressures of gentrification.
Under their CodeNEXT recommendations, none of the east side would be up-zoned for single or multi-family properties, which means that no additional density could be added unless developers add to affordable housing in the area.
He said the planning commission sought to highlight the areas of Austin where the median income is below $50,000 per year or where the rate of gentrification is high, which is how they came up with the "Eastern Crescent."
The planning commission recently submitted their recommendations for CodeNEXT, the overhaul of the city's land use development code, to the city council and council is gathering public feedback this week about the new code.
An image of the "Eastern Crescent" area which Austin Planning Commissioners recommend should not receive additional housing density under CodeNEXT. (Photo from a Planning Commission PowerPoint/ Courtesy Conor Kenny).
Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. An image of the "Eastern Crescent" area which Austin Planning Commissioners recommend should not receive additional housing density under CodeNEXT. (Photo from a Planning Commission PowerPoint/ Courtesy Conor Kenny).
VIDEO - SCHIETPARTIJ LUIK - Wat we nu weten: Man schiet twee agentes en voorbijganger dood. Dader riep Allahu Akbar | Binnenland | Nieuws | HLN
Tue, 29 May 2018 22:30
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VIDEO - Lawyers Send Mobile Ads To Phones In ER Waiting Rooms : Shots - Health News : NPR
Tue, 29 May 2018 21:54
Some personal injury law firms now automatically target online ads at anyone who enters a nearby hospital's emergency room and has a cellphone. The ads may show up on multiple devices for more than a month. sshepard/Getty Images hide caption
toggle caption sshepard/Getty Images Some personal injury law firms now automatically target online ads at anyone who enters a nearby hospital's emergency room and has a cellphone. The ads may show up on multiple devices for more than a month.
sshepard/Getty Images Patients sitting in emergency rooms, at chiropractors' offices and at pain clinics in the Philadelphia area may start noticing on their phones the kind of messages typically seen along highway billboards and public transit: personal injury law firms looking for business by casting mobile online ads at patients.
The potentially creepy part? They're only getting fed the ad because somebody knows they are in an emergency room.
The technology behind the ads, known as geofencing, or placing a digital perimeter around a specific location, has been deployed by retailers for years to offer coupons and special offers to customers as they shop. Bringing it into health care spaces, however, is raising alarm among privacy experts.
"It's really, I think, the closest thing an attorney can do to putting a digital kiosk inside of an emergency room," says digital marketer Bill Kakis, who runs the Long Island, N.Y.-based firm Tell All Digital. Kakis says he recently inked deals with personal injury law firms in the Philadelphia area to target patients.
Law firms and marketing companies from Tennessee to California are also testing out the technology in hospital settings.
"Is everybody in an emergency room going to need an attorney? Absolutely not," Kakis says. "But people that are going to need a personal injury attorney are more than likely at some point going to end up in an emergency room."
The advertisers identify someone's location by grabbing what is known as "phone ID" from Wi-Fi, cell data or an app using GPS.
Once someone crosses the digital fence, Kakis says, the ads can show up for more than a month '-- and on multiple devices.
To Kakis, this is just modern-day target marketing. In his pitch to potential clients, in an email reviewed by WHYY, he calls the technology "totally legit."
But Massachusetts' attorney general, Maura Healey, offers a different response.
"Private medical information should not be exploited in this way," Healey says. "Especially when it's gathered secretly without a consumer's knowledge, without knowledge or consent."
Healey's office was the first in the country to go after geofencing technology catching people while they are seeking care.
Prosecutors there reached a deal last year with a Massachusetts-based digital advertising firm that was sending advertisements from a Christian pregnancy counseling and adoption agency to people who entered Planned Parenthood clinics. When patients would go to the clinics, they'd also cross a digital fence and soon get advertisements such as "You have choices" and "Click here for pregnancy help."
Healey's deal claiming violations of the state's consumer protection act for the ads being allegedly "unfair and deceptive" resulted in banishment of the digital firm from Massachusetts.
Directing ads at people for seeking medical care is really a kind of digital harassment, Healey says.
"We just want to make sure that companies aren't exploiting information in violation of existing privacy laws with respect to health information that's so sensitive," she says.
Most consumers realize that their phones are basically a tracking device, says Bill McGeveran, an attorney who teaches Internet and technology law at the University of Minnesota. It is one thing to feel targeted in a grocery store, he says, but it feels far more intrusive when it creeps into other parts of daily life.
"I think information about health, sexuality, finances, political views, people feel really differently about than they do about the brand of toothpaste they prefer," McGeveran says. "And a higher level of sensitivity makes sense with this kind of sensitive information."
Perhaps a bit alarming, but is it illegal? McGeveran says not necessarily, at least not right now. The federal heath privacy law known as HIPAA, for instance, would not apply to these location-based mobile ads.
"It applies to hospitals and clinics and doctors and insurance companies, not to the lawyers and the marketers working on their behalf," he says. "HIPAA is targeted only to certain particular actors in the health care industry, so there's lots of digital marketing and record-keeping that's outside of HIPAA."
McGeveran says prosecutors can try novel uses of state consumers protection laws, like Healey did. But it is so far unclear how those claims would hold up on appeal.
Another possibility is the Federal Trade Commission cracking down if information is being shared in a sneaky way. The FTC once settled with a flashlight app that was deceptively sharing consumers' locations with advertisers. But federal regulators have been slow to combat phone tracking in hospitals, McGeveran says.
Kakis did not want to reveal which personal injury law firms have signed on with his marketing firm and which hospitals are affected. He will say, though, that the geotargeted campaigns in the area of health care are one of the fastest-growing parts of his business.
"Within a few weeks, we pretty much had every hospital taken up in the downstate New York area," he says.
Several personal injury law firms in Philadelphia contacted for comment never returned calls and emails seeking comments about advertising strategies.
In talking to people coming in and out of emergency rooms, one thing becomes clear fast: Some see these kind of targeted ads as preying on people when they are the most vulnerable.
Take Joe Finnegan, 40, of Northeast Philadelphia. He recently had an appointment at a hospital in Center City and says he wouldn't want that fact shared without his knowledge.
"It's supposed to be your privacy as a patient," Finnegan says.
Seeing law firm ads tied to his recent hospital visit, he says, would be enraging, since he had no idea he was crossing into the geotargeted zone.
"I mean, you can't just put a physical fence up, why would you be able to put a cyberfence up?" he says. "I don't get it."
Meanwhile, Kakis says that in his initial talks with law firms looking for clients, he has used this pitch before: "What's your target demographic for injured people? There isn't one. Because everybody gets injured."
But the ads that go along with that pitch make Finnegan wonder: "If they're tracking every move in that regard, what else are they watching?"
Sometimes, your perspective on the issue depends which side of the fence you're on.
VIDEO - Unexpected airport arrival: Dog gives birth at Tampa International - Story | WOFL
Tue, 29 May 2018 20:35
Image Gallery 15 PHOTOS Photo courtesy Tampa Fire RescueTAMPA (FOX 13) - It's not exactly airmail, but a very special delivery just wrapped up at Tampa International Airport. A passenger's service dog gave birth to eight puppies in the middle of the concourse.
According to an airport spokesperson, a woman and her daughter were on their way to Philadelphia this morning with a pair of service dogs when one of them went into labor. The women said that they knew 'Ellie' the yellow Lab was pregnant, but they were not aware of how close she apparently was to giving birth.
Initially, seven puppies (all boys!) were born but Tampa Fire Rescue's medical team '' admirably stepping up as impromptu veterinarians '' had to help Ellie deliver an eighth.
The unusual scene drew quite a crowd outside of the Gasparilla Bar at TIA's Airside F. Officers, airport employees, and passengers all paused to watch the pups' arrival. Proud papa 'Nugget' was looking on, too.
A round of applause '' and a few barks '' echoed through the terminal after Puppy 8 (a girl!) was successfully delivered.
And yes, the two women have since missed their flight to Philly. Airlines don't generally allow pups to fly until they are 8 weeks old, so the family will have to find another way there '' with 10 dogs instead of two.
VIDEO - Skunk Politics on Twitter: "Please help these CNN anchors out, they are delusional. @sarahcwestwood @adamcurry https://t.co/z5Gwru34MD"
Tue, 29 May 2018 00:15
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