Cover for No Agenda Show 1120: Sure.
March 14th, 2019 • 2h 49m

1120: Sure.


Every new episode of No Agenda is accompanied by a comprehensive list of shownotes curated by Adam while preparing for the show. Clips played by the hosts during the show can also be found here.

Boeing Tesla Facebook - all Professor Ted's Legacy
New Home-Married-decided not to have kids because of climate change
Andrew Yang note
John and Adam,
I am a long-time listener and contributor of the show, with
multiple executive producer credits. I love you both dearly and have nothing
but respect for the incredible work you both do.
However, I am not sure what's going on with the two of you
that you have completely MISSED the biggest news story of this current campaign
cycle: Andrew Yang. He is a former CEO and political outsider with a
rapidly growing grassroots movement that crosses party lines (in terms of
support) and neither of you seem to be on the ball here.
Andrew Yang just spoke at SXSW and he has been interviewed
by Joe Rogan, Sam Harris, Tucker Carlson, The Young Turks, Ezra Klein,
Freakonomics, CNBC, CBS, Business Insider, and about 900 more since he
announced his candidacy for POTUS in February. His campaign just raised over $1
million and has now crossed the 65,000 individual donor threshold needed to get
him into the Democratic debates in June.
Disappointed AF,
Slave D.
Switzerland: A basic income experiment is on the verge of starting in Switzerland | BIEN
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 11:17
NewsSwitzerland: A basic income experiment is on the verge of starting in SwitzerlandRebecca Panian
The Swiss village of Rheinau is being targeted for a basic income experiment. The idea is being promoted and produced by the Dorf Testet Zukunft organization (Village of the Future Test). It started in 2016, through a popular initiative, and it had already been approved by more than 25% of the Reinhau population, at the time. Although Reinhau is only habited by 1300 people, 813 have already registered for the experiment. That is above what the organization needed for starting funding, which was 651 registrations.
The basic income test itself is planned to start as early as 2019, given enough funding is secured, which starts now. The Dorf Testet Zukunft will have to raise over 5 million Swiss Francs (4,4 million Euros). The plan is for this amount to be distributed unconditionally to all registered participants, for a year. The money will be distributed according to age, such that until 18 years old children receive 550 '‚¬/month, the 18-22 years old bracket receive 1100 '‚¬/month, from 22 to 25 years old 1640 '‚¬/month and above that a 2190 '‚¬/month stipend is specified. According to the organization, income from other sources will be discounted over the basic income, up to its maximum value. However, no one will be left with less income than presently, and all people with less income than the basic income value will have more than before (during the experiment). The exact and appropriate experimental mechanism and values are in accordance with villagers and the local council, since the project is open to comment and contributions from all involved.
Dorf Testet Zukunft's team is composed by several dedicated people, headed by project initiator and filmmaker Rebecca Panian, Reto Ormos (financial expert) and Reda El Arbi (Communications), among others. There is also a scientific team dedicated to the project, including Jens Martignoni (FleXibles), Aleksandra Gnach (linguistics professor at ZHAW), Theo Wehner (ETH Zurich) and Sascha Liebermann (Alanus Hochschule). Other support come from activists like Daniel H¤ni, G¶tz Werner and Enno Schmidt.
Funding is planned to be done through a crowdfunding process, using Wemakeit, a crowdfunding platform founded in Switzerland in 2012. Data is to be collected from recipients during its duration, with a focus on answering general questions such as ''What happens to the people?'' and ''What happens in the community?'', and analyzed afterwards. A documentary film is also planned, directed by Rebecca Panian, which main drive is a search for an answer for ''how we want to live in the future''.
The idea is, in a nutshell, can be condensed in the following words written in the Dorf Testet Zukunft's website:
''We want to test a possible new future as realistic as possible. This requires pioneers who dare and try it out. Best case: we can encourage people to discuss about the idea of the basic income because we are convinced that a system change must come from the people. Not prescribed from a government.''
More information at:
Dorf Testet Zukunft website
The views expressed in this Op-Ed piece are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the view of Basic Income News or BIEN . BIEN and Basic Income News do not endorse any particular policy, but Basic Income News welcomes discussion from all points of view in its Op-Ed section.
The Brexit Plan Failed Again: What Happened, and What's Next? - The New York Times
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 10:10
Image Anti-Brexit demonstrators outside the Houses of Parliament in London on Tuesday. A vote on Britain's withdrawal from the European Union is potentially a definitive test for the battle-worn prime minister, Theresa May. Credit Credit Matt Dunham/Associated Press ' Britain's Parliament on Tuesday soundly defeated Prime Minister Theresa May's plan to exit the European Union, a 391 to 242 vote that is likely to delay Brexit and could derail it entirely. It is a devastating blow to Mrs. May that threatens her hold on power.
' The vote left the nation with no obvious way forward, just 17 days before the deadline for leaving the European Union. Parliament is sharply divided on when, how and even whether to proceed with Brexit, and whether to call an election or a second referendum.
Video Britain's Parliament voted on Tuesday against the latest plan proposed by Prime Minister Theresa May to exit the European Union. Only 17 days remain before the deadline. Credit Credit Parliamentary Recording Unit Confusion and uncertainty deepenParliament's rebuke to Prime Minister Theresa May, on the issue that has dominated British politics for three years, casts the nation's political and economic future into confusion with just 17 days left until its scheduled exit from the European Union.
The vote is sure to intensify calls for her to either step down, call a general election, or both. Plenty of Conservative lawmakers would like to take her place as party leader and prime minister, but there is no obvious front-runner, and the outcome of a general election is just as unclear.
Mrs. May's plan, painstakingly negotiated with the European Union, would have set the terms for Britain's scheduled exit on March 29.
Unless Parliament takes some other action, Britain will leave the bloc on that date without a deal in place, which Brexit hard-liners insist would be fine, but which most lawmakers and economists say would be disastrous.
Parliament is set to vote Wednesday on whether to reject the prospect of a ''no-deal'' Brexit, and to vote Thursday on whether to seek a postponement of the March 29 deadline.
The bloc would have to agree to a postponement, which appears likely, but the duration of such a delay is uncertain.
''Let me be clear,'' Mrs. May said after the defeat. ''Voting against leaving without a deal and for an extension does not solve the problems we face. The E.U. will want to know what use we will make of such an extension.''
Tuesday's vote was Parliament's second rejection of the plan, and there was talk of a third vote, even closer to the deadline.
Image Not since the early 1990s had a prime minister faced a vote of no confidence. Mrs. May has experienced two in three months. Credit Jessica Taylor/Agence France-Presse '-- Getty Images What happens now that Parliament has rejected the deal again?Parliament's rejection of Mrs. May's deal shifts the focus to a vote scheduled for Wednesday on whether to oppose leaving without a deal.
After Tuesday's vote, the prime minister said she would not try to dictate to her party's members how to vote on Wednesday.
''This will be a free vote on this side of the house,'' she said.
A vote against a no-deal Brexit would most likely require pushing back the originally scheduled departure date of March 29, and Parliament is scheduled to vote Thursday on whether to seek a postponement.
Some hard-line Brexiteers insist that they would welcome a no-deal split as a clean and complete break from the European Union. But it is clear that most members of Parliament see it as more akin to driving over a cliff.
Formal opposition in Parliament to a no-deal departure would ratchet up pressure on the government to seek a postponement of the deadline, something that would be contingent on an agreement between Mrs. May's government and the European Union.
Michel Barnier, the bloc's chief Brexit negotiator, reiterated its position that delay or no delay, the European Union was not prepared to make more concessions. ''The E.U. has done everything it can to help get the Withdrawal Agreement over the line,'' he wrote on Twitter.
The British government could evade the March 29 deadline unilaterally, but only by revoking its decision to leave the European Union, a step that Mrs. May has insisted she will not take. But postponing or revoking Britain's departure would give new hope to those who want to call a second referendum.
The 2016 referendum won with 52 percent of the vote, but Brexit opponents hope that circumstances have changed enough to reverse the result.
Image The British attorney general, Geoffrey Cox, outside the prime minister's office on Downing Street in London on Tuesday. Credit Toby Melville/Reuters Attorney general says little has changed, a setback for MayPrime Minister Theresa May's prospects of winning the crucial vote were dealt a significant blow Tuesday morning when the attorney general, Geoffrey Cox, said that the extra assurances she had negotiated with European leaders did not fundamentally change the legal position.
Mr. Cox said the concessions did ''reduce the risk'' of Britain's being trapped in the backstop '-- an insurance policy to ensure there is no hard Irish border, and a main issue for opponents of Mrs. May's deal.
[What is the Irish ''backstop''? Read our full explanation here.]
But Mr. Cox said that the assurances did not alter Britain's rights and obligations. Were there to be a dispute, he wrote, the country would have ''no internationally lawful means of exiting the protocol's arrangements, save by agreement.''
Mr. Cox's opinion was seen as influential for pro-Brexit Conservative lawmakers who had been considering voting for the deal.
On Tuesday morning, Mrs. May led a meeting of the cabinet and told her senior ministers that passing the vote would allow the country to move on to a brighter future, while the alternative would be uncertainty with no guarantee of what happens next. ''Let's get this done,'' Mrs. May said, in comments released by her office.
Mrs. May has delayed the withdrawal vote time and again in hopes that the looming deadline would force critics on both sides to give in.
But she faced a very steep climb: In January, Parliament rejected her deal by a vote of 432 to 202. On Tuesday, it became clear that she had not changed nearly enough minds to win.
Image Mrs. May speaking in Parliament on Tuesday. Credit Parliamentary Recording Unit Making the case, even as her voice gives outHer voice hoarse and her political career hanging by a thread, Prime Minister Theresa May stood up in Parliament on Tuesday afternoon and tried to narrow the choice before lawmakers: Vote for my deal, she said, or Britain might very well end up staying in the European Union.
''If this vote is not passed tonight, if this deal is not passed,'' Mrs. May said, ''then Brexit could be lost.''
Mrs. May was alluding to the possibility that, if Parliament were to reject her deal on Tuesday night, lawmakers could delay Britain's departure from the European Union, and could later get behind a softer deal or a second referendum that could reject Brexit altogether.
The prime minister, who hoped the threat of those outcomes would persuade hard-line Brexit supporters to back her deal, argued that the tweaks she had secured from the European Union on Monday had strengthened Britain's hand and given it more power over the backstop arrangement that would temporarily bind it to European trading rules.
But the empty green benches behind her at the start of her speech were just one sign of the thin support she enjoys among backbench Conservative members of Parliament.
Image Protesters on both sides of the Brexit debate outside in London on Tuesday. Credit Matt Dunham/Associated Press Legal experts are skepticalEven before the attorney general had issued his analysis, other legal experts had expressed similar opinions.
Apparently, the most that can be said for the changes is that they reinforce the notion that Britain can opt out of European trading rules if officials in Brussels are found to be negotiating in bad faith.
''In the real world,'' wrote Michael Dougan, a professor of European law at the University of Liverpool, ''such a prospect should be considered almost entirely theoretical, if not altogether fanciful.''
Three experts in European and international law, commissioned by Brexit opponents to consider Mrs. May's last-minute tweaks, wrote in an 11-page opinion, ''The backstop will endure indefinitely, unless and until superseded by another agreement, save in the extreme and unlikely event that in future negotiations the E.U. acts in bad faith in rejecting the U.K.'s demands.''
New figures show an economy held back by uncertaintyGovernment figures published on Tuesday showed very weak economic growth in Britain, just 0.2 percent in the three-month period that ended in January.
''Growth remained weak with falls in manufacture of metal products, cars and construction repair work all dampening growth,'' Rob Kent-Smith, the leader of the team that compiled the report, said in a statement.
Investment in auto manufacturing and other sectors has taken a hit as the country has stumbled toward Brexit. Manufacturers have pleaded with the government for some certainty so they can plan ahead, but many have opted to take their business elsewhere.
Joshua Hardie, the deputy director general at the Confederation of British Industry, described a no-deal Brexit as a ''threat that is crippling business in sectors every day,'' and encouraged lawmakers to vote for the deal.
The value of the pound sagged after Mr. Cox's advice on the backstop, with currency traders fearing that his comments had hurt the deal's chances of passing.
With the defeat of the deal, financial analysts said, the outlook for the pound, and the British economy as a whole, depended heavily on what follows. If Mrs. May resigns or calls an early election, that would inject still more uncertainty into the equation, making for a bumpy ride for Britain.
Video Prime Minister Theresa May's new Brexit plan failed on Tuesday in Parliament, where the Irish border has been a contentious issue. We talked to people in Northern Ireland about the difficulty of finding a solution. What is the Irish ''backstop''?If you don't understand the plan for the Irish border, you're not alone.
Confusing in the best of times and loudly debated almost all the time, the Irish backstop is shorthand for the question of how to deal with the border between Ireland, a European Union member country, and Northern Ireland, a part of the United Kingdom, once Britain leaves the European Union.
The backstop would be a way to avoid building a physical barrier with checkpoints for goods '-- the kind of barrier that the European Union has done away with inside the bloc. The backstop provision of Mrs. May's Brexit plan says that so long as there is no long-term trade pact, Britain would remain in the European customs union and Northern Ireland would be bound by many of its rules.
Britain could therefore remain tied to the European Union indefinitely without having a voice in shaping its rules '-- a nightmare scenario for hard-line supporters of Brexit. Mrs. May could cut a deal with the opposition Labour Party for a plan that keeps Britain closer to the bloc, but doing so would put her at risk of alienating her Conservative allies.
A call for a general electionCharles Walker, a senior Conservative lawmaker and member of the influential 1922 committee, demanded on Tuesday that Mrs. May call a general election if she loses the vote on her Brexit deal.
''If it doesn't go through tonight, as sure as night follows day, there will be a general election within a matter of days or weeks,'' he told BBC Radio 4's World at One program. ''It is not sustainable, the current situation in Parliament.''
The 1922 Committee is a group of Conservative lawmakers who meet weekly to discuss party matters. They are responsible for keeping the leadership informed of the party's mood.
The committee would manage any leadership ballot, although Mrs. May is largely immune from such an effort to remove her for the next 10 months since a party no-confidence vote in December failed.
Image The leader of the Democratic Unionist Party, Arlene Foster, after meeting with Mrs. May in January. Credit Andy Rain/EPA, via Shutterstock A linchpin of the dealAt the center of the Brexit issue is the Democratic Unionist Party, a small group of socially conservative, pro-withdrawal lawmakers from Northern Ireland who wield outsize influence because they prop up Prime Minister Theresa May's government.
The backstop infuriates them not so much because it might trap Britain in the regulatory orbit of Europe, but rather because it might bind Northern Ireland to more European trading rules than it does other parts of the United Kingdom.
That effectively means trade barriers in the Irish Sea, splitting Northern Ireland ever so slightly from the rest of the United Kingdom. That's unacceptable to unionists, for whom the link to Britain is sacred. The D.U.P. would rather kill the backstop and risk a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.
The 10 D.U.P. lawmakers were coy early Tuesday about the tweaks that Mrs. May had obtained. But after Britain's top lawyer said the new language didn't substantially change the backstop arrangement, the government's slim hopes of winning them over quickly deflated.
The Belfast Telegraph reported that the D.U.P. saw the legal advice as ''not exactly a ringing endorsement.'' Other news outlets said D.U.P. officials saw no way that they could support the deal.
Conservatives balk at the proposalA faction of pro-Brexit lawmakers within the governing Conservative Party opposed Mrs. May's deal after a group of its lawyers officially recommended on Tuesday that the lawmakers should not vote for it.
The prime minister needed to win over members of the faction, known as the European Research Group, to have any chance of getting her deal through Parliament.
The group of lawyers published its assessment of the extra assurances that Mrs. May had secured from European Union leaders, saying that the agreement still did not give Britain the power to extract itself from European trading rules that it would be forced to accept as part of the backstop.
''They do not provide any exit mechanism from the protocol which is under the U.K.'s control,'' the assessment found.
Image Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the Labour Party, leaving his home in London on Tuesday. Credit Neil Hall/EPA, via Shutterstock Unrest in the Labour PartyJeremy Corbyn, the leader of the opposition Labour Party, opposed Mrs. May's deal but otherwise maintained his ambivalence over Brexit as part of his strategy to buy time and come out ahead, observers said.
Mr. Corbyn has said that he does not like the plan put before the British Parliament while ''being imprecise over what exactly is Labour's dream deal, other than that he wants a closer alliance with the customs union and single market,'' said Jonathan Tonge, a professor of politics at the University of Liverpool.
On the floor of Parliament on Tuesday, Mr. Corbyn dismissed the assurances Mrs. May had received from the European Union as ''waffle,'' and said that while the prime minister had laid out a number of Brexit goals, ''she hasn't met any of those objectives."
''The Prime Minister's negotiations have failed,'' he wrote on Twitter. ''Last night's agreement with the European Commission does not contain anything approaching the changes Theresa May promised Parliament.''
[Read about how Mr. Corbyn's efforts to play both sides of the Brexit debate are tearing his party apart.]
Mr. Corbyn's ambivalence has angered the party's primary constituencies: Although a majority of Labour voters overall wanted Britain to remain in the European Union, Brexit supporters in rural areas and working communities make up about a third of the party's electorate.
Mr. Corbyn has consistently rejected a ''Tory Brexit,'' and recently said he would support a second referendum '-- a bid to stop a rebellion among Labour lawmakers in Parliament. But that proposal has angered many Leave voters '-- especially those who feel left behind by a party they believed had championed them.
''Corbyn can't ride both horses forever but he's already ridden for quite a long distance, and there is a certain logic to it,'' Professor Tonge said.
Image Some hard-line Brexit supporters insist that they would welcome a no-deal split as a clean and complete break from the European Union. Credit Matt Dunham/Associated Press For more breaking news and in-depth reporting, follow @nytimesworld on Twitter.
The clip on the latest
show saying GPS timestamps are used in banking transactions is BS. My wife and
I both have worked as software engineers in the banking industry for major
banks and I have never heard of such a thing. All of the banks use old
mainframes from the 70s or 80s for their system of record. The interfaces are
old green screen terminals, not GPS enabled.
I actually worked on a
project to automate the financial reconciliation team's work using VBScript
(barf!). The payments tracked through the green screen only capture month, day,
and year, no time component at all. If a customer made multiple payments in a
single day you could never truly associate the payment on the system to the
specific deposit into the account. The best we could do was aggregate the
totals for the day per account and make sure they matched. If they didn't match
a person had to go research which payments were recieved and which were not,
put it into an Excel spreadsheet, and upload it into another system to get it
resolved. #AI #MachineLearning
We ended up having to do
work arounds like creating VBScript macros for people to use to enter payments
so the timestamp could be added as text in comment messages through the green
screen. The timestamps then had to be parsed out of the comments for the
"automated" reconciliation. People didn't always use the macro and
sometimes the VBScript would just die without a reason which made it impossible
to automate.
Thank you.
Native 5G ad
Hello Adam,
Duh it was an native ad for 5G that will provide time syncro and
positioning without satellites.
How do satellites track time? ATOMIC CLOCKS
Banks do sync their time over the internet or GPS with atomic
clocks because if the time is 5 min off all crypto will fail.
They are afraid to sync over the internet because if a hacker
could change the time they will be down (denial of service)
Many data centers did install a GPS antenna to sync the time but
also have a backup time source.
Of course are transactions not protected by the time stamp
otherwise I didn't have to come to work every day!
This is what banks face today: Bangladesh Central Bank
Here an inside Amazon arrived in Luxembourg and Banks are saying
Amazon will play a role in the banking sector because they can offer cheap
services to banks (clearing) because of the huge volumes of transactions they
have. So start thinking about Amazon as a bank. Today they already
transfer money in every country in the world between accounts. What prevents
them to transfer money from your account to your daughter in Europe and bypass
the central banks?
Thanks for the great show it helps me thru my long compute 220km
from Belgium to Luxembourg and back every day.
Combo of Services
Hi Crackpot & Buzzkill,
This is an area where I actually know quite a bit. I am the
Meinberg dealer for Australia & NZ. IMO Meinberg makes the best timing
technology in the world.
Accurate timing is ABSOLUTELY CRITICAL for modern stock
trading, networking, broadcast, and communications. GPS is the most common
source of time. You quoted someone saying "All financial transactions are
time stamped by GPS". This is correct in spirit, but is technically not
There are 4 main satellite constellations available. GPS,
GLONASS, Galileo, BeiDou. There are other radio technology time sources like
DCF77. In most cases these technologies are used to synchronize an oscillator
in a time server. This time server is then used to provide accurate time to
Regarding GPS, there are 24 satellites, you need 4 in sight
in order to get the correct time. taking one out would politically be like
dropping a nuke on a city. it will only happen in the event of WW3. GPS
spoofing is pretty much not a problem. The time servers have algorithms for
detecting this.
I sold the time server system that is used by the ASX
(Australian stock exchange). They have a mesh of redundant time servers that
provide PTP services (IEEE 1588, very high accuracy network time). These are
synchronized off a master reference clock that can continue to provide accurate
time for about a week in the event of satellite loss. The DOD use Rubidium
oscillators that will have accurate time for about a month, and provide NTP
level accuracy for a year.
In the event of Apocalyptic loss of all time sources. It
will limit or slow down international or long distance trading. But so long as
everything is using a local authoritative source, it doesn't matter.
Dvorak is correct, ISDN is a piece of shit.
Dude named Ned, Knight of the convict broadcasts.
Y2K Comparison
Hi guys,
When I mentioned that Y2K was an example of an overblown
flop that many were alarmed about before hand, I got this response that I
thought I would share with you:
As someone who worked on a couple of large scale Y2K
mitigation projects for fairly big organisations, I am compelled to say this:
The problem was discerned and scoped (and there
definitely was a problem). Plans were designed, tested, and then implemented.
Those implementations ensured that the bulk of computer systems affected by the
Year 2000 bug were either fixed so that the bug was removed or mitigated
against, or those systems were upgraded or wholly replaced.
Problem. Solution. Implementation.
Y2K did not cause catastrophe not because there wasn’t a
problem to begin with, but because a very large number of people and
organisations threw themselves at the highly visible problem, and sorted it out.
To casually dismiss what was a herculean effort unheard of previously in IT
industries, just because it didn’t fail, is just ridiculous.
And to say “the only thing that happened” with a flippant
tag at the end is ridiculous; the benefits of the mass upgrades that took place
were spectacular. A large number of legacy systems were removed, bringing many
organisations’ technology stacks right up to date for the time.
GPS disciplined oscillator - Wikipedia
Sun, 10 Mar 2019 23:11
A GPS clock, or GPS disciplined oscillator (GPSDO), is a combination of a GPS receiver and a high-quality, stable oscillator such as a quartz or rubidium oscillator whose output is controlled to agree with the signals broadcast by GPS or other GNSS satellites.[1][2]GPSDOs work well as a source of timing because the satellite time signals must be accurate in order to provide positional accuracy for GPS in navigation. These signals are accurate to nanoseconds and provide a good reference for timing applications.[3][4]
A GPS disciplined oscillator unit with a GPS antenna input, 10 MHz and 1 pulse-per-second (PPS) outputs, and an
RS232 interface.
Applications [ edit ] GPSDOs serve as an indispensable source of timing in a range of applications, and some technology applications would not be practical without them.[5]GPSDOs are used as the basis for Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) around the world. UTC is the official accepted standard for time and frequency. UTC is controlled by the Bureau International des Poids et Mesures (BIPM). Timing centers around the world use GPS to align their own time scales to UTC.[6][7]GPS based standards are used to provide synchronization to wireless base stations[8] and serve well in standards laboratories as an alternative to cesium-based references.[3]
GPSDOs can be used to provide synchronization of multiple RF receivers, allowing for RF phase coherent operation among the receivers[9] and applications, such as passive radar and ionosondes.[10]
Operation [ edit ] A GPSDO works by disciplining, or steering a high quality quartz or rubidium oscillator by locking the output to a GPS signal via a tracking loop. The disciplining mechanism works in a similar way to a phase-locked loop (PLL), but in most GPSDOs the loop filter is replaced with a microcontroller that uses software to compensate for not only the phase and frequency changes of the local oscillator, but also for the "learned" effects of aging, temperature, and other environmental parameters.[3][11]
One of the keys to the usefulness of a GPSDO as a timing reference is the way it is able to combine the stability characteristics of the GPS signal and the oscillator controlled by the tracking loop. GPS receivers have excellent long-term stability (as characterized by their Allan deviation)[7] at averaging times greater than several hours. However, their short-term stability is degraded by limitations of the internal resolution of the one pulse per second (1PPS) reference timing circuits, signal propagation effects such as multipath interference, atmospheric conditions, and other impairments. On the other hand, a quality oven-controlled oscillator has better short-term stability but is susceptible to thermal, aging, and other long-term effects. A GPSDO aims to utilize the best of both sources, combining the short-term stability performance of the oscillator with the long-term stability of the GPS signals to give a reference source with excellent overall stability characteristics.[12]
GPSDOs typically phase-align the internal flywheel oscillator to the GPS signal by using dividers to generate a 1PPS signal from the reference oscillator, then phase comparing this 1PPS signal to the GPS-generated 1PPS signal and using the phase differences to control the local oscillator frequency in small adjustments via the tracking loop.[13] This differentiates GPSDOs from their cousins NCOs (numerically controlled oscillator). Rather than disciplining an oscillator via frequency adjustments, NCOs typically use a free-running, low-cost crystal oscillator and adjust the output phase by digitally lengthening or shortening the output phase many times per second in large phase steps assuring that on average the number of phase transitions per second is aligned to the GPS receiver reference source. This guarantees frequency accuracy at the expense of high phase noise and jitter, a degradation that true GPSDOs do not suffer.
When the GPS signal becomes unavailable, the GPSDO goes into a state of holdover, where it tries to maintain accurate timing using only the internal oscillator.
Sophisticated algorithms are used to compensate for the aging and temperature stability of the oscillator while the GPSDO is in holdover.[14]
The use of Selective Availability (SA) prior to May 2000 restricted the accuracy of GPS signals available for civilian use and in turn presented challenges to the accuracy of GPSDO derived timing. The turning off of SA resulted in a significant increase in the accuracy that GPSDOs can offer.[15]GPSDOs are capable of generating frequency accuracies and stabilities on the order of parts per billion for even entry-level, low-cost units, to parts per trillion for more advanced units within minutes after power-on, and are thus one of the highest-accuracy physically-derived reference standards available.
References [ edit ] External links [ edit ] GPS Disciplined 10MHz OscillatorGPS Disciplined Oscillator ModulesDisciplined Oscillator ModuleManufacturers of Time and Frequency ReceiversA Simplified GPS-Derived Frequency StandardGPS synchronized 10MHz oscillator
Admissions Scandal
Admissions boards??
Hypocracy Loop
A slew of CEOs charged in alleged college entrance cheating scam
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 21:52
The following people were charged, according to the U.S. attorney's office in Boston:
The following defendants were charged in a criminal complaint with conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud:
Gregory Abbott, 68, of New York, and his wife, Marcia Abbott 59. He is founder and chairman of International Dispensing Corp., a food and beverage packaging company.
Gamal "Aziz" Abdelaziz, 62, of Las Vegas, former president and executive director of Wynn Macau resort.
Diane Blake, 55, of San Francisco, an executive at retail merchandising firm.
Todd Blake, 53, of San Francisco, an entrepreneur and investor.
Jane Buckingham, 50, of Beverly Hills, Calif., CEO of a boutique marketing company Trendera, which has offices in New York and Los Angeles.
Gordon Caplan, 52, of Greenwich, Conn., co-chairman of Willkie Farr, which says it has 700 lawyers in 10 offices in six countries.
I-Hin "Joey" Chen, 64, of Newport Beach, Calif., operates a provider of warehousing and related services for the shipping industry.
Amy Colburn, 59, of Palo Alto, Calif.
Gregory Colburn, 61, of Palo Alto, Calif.
Robert Flaxman, 62, of Laguna Beach, Calif., founder and CEO of real estate development firm Crown Realty & Development.
Mossimo Giannulli, 55, of Los Angeles, fashion designer.
Elizabeth Henriquez, 56, of Atherton, Calif.
Manuel Henriquez, 55, of Atherton, Calif., founder, chairman and CEO of Hercules Technology Growth Capital.
Douglas Hodge, 61, of Laguna Beach, Calif., former CEO of Pimco investment management company.
Felicity Huffman, 56, of Los Angeles, actress.
Agustin Huneeus Jr., 53, of San Francisco, owner of a family wine vineyard in Napa Valley.
Bruce Isackson, 61, of Hillsborough, Calif., president of a real estate development firm.
Davina Isackson, 55, of Hillsborough, Calif.
Michelle Janavs, 48, of Newport Coast, Calif., former executive of a large food manufacturer.
Elisabeth Kimmel, 54, of Las Vegas, owner and president of a media company.
Marjorie Klapper, 50, of Menlo Park, Calif., co-owner of jewelry business.
Lori Loughlin, 54, of Los Angeles, actress.
Toby MacFarlane, 56, of Del Mar, Calif., former senior executive at a title insurance company.
William McGlashan Jr., 55, of Mill Valley, Calif., senior executive at TPG private equity firm.
Marci Palatella, 63, of Healdsburg, Calif., CEO of a liquor distribution company.
Peter Jan Sartorio, 53, of Menlo Park, Calif., packaged food entrepreneur.
Stephen Semprevivo, 53, of Los Angeles, executive at privately held provider of outsourced sales teams.
Devin Sloane, 53, of Los Angeles, founder and CEO of provider of drinking and wastewater systems.
John Wilson, 59, of Hyannis Port, Mass., founder and CEO of private equity and real estate development firm.
Homayoun Zadeh, 57, of Calabasas, Calif., an associate professor of dentistry.
Robert Zangrillo, 52, of Miami, founder and CEO of Dragon Global.
In addition:
William Rick Singer, 58, of Newport Beach, Calif., owner of the Edge College & Career Network and CEO of the Key Worldwide Foundation, was charged in an information with racketeering conspiracy and money laundering.
Mark Riddell, 36, of Palmetto, Fla., was charged in an information with conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud as well as conspiracy to commit money laundering.
Rudolph "Rudy" Meredith, 51, of Madison, Conn., former head women's soccer coach at Yale University, was charged in an information with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and wire fraud.
John Vandemoer, 41, of Stanford, Calif., the former sailing coach at Stanford University, was charged in an information with racketeering conspiracy.
David Sidoo, 59, of Vancouver, Canada, was charged in an indictment with conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud. Sidoo was arrested on Friday in San Jose, California, and appeared in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California on Monday. A date for his initial appearance in federal court in Boston has not been scheduled.
The following people were charged with racketeering conspiracy:
Igor Dvorskiy, 52, of Sherman Oaks, Calif., director of a private elementary and high school in Los Angeles and a test administrator for the College Board and ACT.
Gordon Ernst, 52, of Chevy Chase, Md., former head coach of men and women's tennis at Georgetown University.
William Ferguson, 48, of Winston-Salem, N.C., former women's volleyball coach at Wake Forest University.
Martin Fox, 62, of Houston, president of a private tennis academy in Houston.
Donna Heinel, 57, of Long Beach, Calif., senior associate athletic director at the University of Southern California.
Laura Janke, 36, of North Hollywood, Calif., former assistant coach of women's soccer at the University of Southern California.
Ali Khoroshahin, 49, of Fountain Valley, Calif., former head coach of women's soccer at the University of Southern California.
Steven Masera, 69, of Folsom, Calif., accountant and financial officer for the Edge College & Career Network and the Key Worldwide Foundation.
Jorge Salcedo, 46, of Los Angeles, former head coach of men's soccer at the University of California at Los Angeles.
Mikaela Sanford, 32, of Folsom, Calif., employee of the Edge College & Career Network and the Key Worldwide Foundation.
Jovan Vavic, 57, of Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif., former water polo coach at the University of Southern California.
Niki Williams, 44, of Houston, assistant teacher at a Houston high school and test administrator for the College Board and ACT.
The following defendant was charged in a criminal complaint with conspiracy to commit mail fraud and mail fraud:
Michael Center, 54, of Austin, Texas, head coach of men's tennis at the University of Texas at Austin.
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Jared Kushner's Harvard acceptance again questioned following the indictment of Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 10:16
March 12, 2019In his 2006 book, ProPublica editor Daniel Golden alleged that a $2.5 million donation by Jared Kushner's father in 1998 may have paved way for his admission into Harvard University shortly after. The reporting began doing the rounds again following the indictment of Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin in a new college admission scandal.
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Georgetown Rich Kid Isabelle Henriquez 'Gloated' After Allegedly Cheating SATs
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 10:25
According to her LinkedIn page, Isabelle Henriquez is ''a rapid learner'' who enjoys ''finding the problem and taking a step back to observe all possible solutions.''
According to the FBI, Isabelle Henriquez solved the problem of getting accepted by Georgetown University by knowingly cheating on her SATs'--and participating in a $25 million cash-for-college scheme that could send her parents to prison.
Nearly three dozen wealthy parents were indicted as part of a vast confederacy of dunces on Tuesday, after federal investigators alleged that they shelled out millions of dollars to bribe, lie and cheat their children into some of the nation's top universities.
But Isabelle is one of the only kids accused of willingly participating in the fraud'--and now her Georgetown diploma may be in jeopardy.
She's the daughter of Manuel and Elizabeth Henriquez, two of the 50 people charged in a $25 million cash-for-college scheme wherein wealthy parents allegedly plotted with an unscrupulous college preparatory business to buy spots at top-flight universities.
Alongside Hollywood stars like Lori Loughlin and big-name lawyers, the Henriquezes are alleged in the 204-page complaint to have paid at least $425,000 to the Edge College & Career Network, also known as The Key.
In exchange, The Key founder William Singer, who has pleaded guilty and is cooperating with federal investigators, helped cheat standardized tests, bribe college athletics coaches, and lie on applications for admission to Yale University, the University of Southern California, Stanford University, and other highly competitive schools'--including Georgetown, where Isabelle is now a junior.
U.S. Attorney for Massachusetts Andrew Lelling described the parents as comprising ''a catalog of wealth and privilege,'' for whom the leg-up in admissions won by their money and connections was not enough.
''They chose to corrupt and illegally manipulate the system,'' Lelling said at a press conference on Tuesday. ''There can be no separate college admissions system for the wealthy.''
Although many of the parents took great steps to avoid letting their children know that their test scores and admissions letter had been bought and paid for'--''it's no accident there are no students charged,'' Lelling noted'--there was at least one exception.
According to the complaint, as a student at a pricey Catholic prep school, Isabelle was an active and knowing participant in the cheating scheme that resulted in her acceptance at Georgetown.
Isabelle's parents paid The Key $25,000 to arrange for a ''proctor'' to sit with her as she took the SATs in October 2015 and to correct her answers as she went, the complaint said. Manuel Henriquez is the co-founder, chairman and chief executive officer of Hercules Capital, a Northern California venture debt firm where he was paid $8,235,700 in total compensation in 2017. The Henriquezes reside in Atherton, California, a sunny hamlet in San Mateo County home to the most expensive ZIP Code in the United States.
Once the proctor was flown into San Francisco'--on the Henriquezes' dime'--the exam was administered at Notre Dame High School, Belmont, the private all-girls Catholic school that Isabelle attended at the time.
''Unbeknownst to the school,'' the complaint alleges, the proctor ''sat side-by-side'' with Isabelle during the exam, providing her with answers as she went. ''After the exam, he 'gloated' with Elizabeth Henriquez and her daughter about the fact that they had cheated and gotten away with it.''
Isabelle received a score of 1900 out of 2400, a 320-point improvement from her previous score, according to the complaint'--although likely still too low to gain admission to Georgetown without spectacular extracurriculars and character references.
Fortunately for Isabelle, according to the complaint, The Key was able to provide those as well.
Federal investigators allege that the Henriquezes conspired with The Key to bribe Gordon Ernst, Georgetown's head tennis coach, into designating Isabelle a tennis recruit, despite her notable handicap of having never played in a tennis tournament during her entire high school career.
''I have been really successful this summer playing tennis around the country,'' Isabelle wrote in a letter to Ernst, the complaint alleges. ''I am looking forward to having a chance to be part of the Georgetown tennis team and make a positive contribution to your team's success.''
Isabelle was also encouraged to rewrite her college application essay to be more tennis-centric, in keeping with her newfound lifelong passion for the sport. In her essay, Isabelle detailed the ''three[-to-]four hours a day grinding out on and off court workouts with the hopes of becoming successful enough to play college tennis especially at Georgetown.''
In exchange for designating Isabelle a tennis recruit, the complaint alleges, The Key paid Ernst $950,000, part of more than $2.7 million in bribes paid to the coach by multiple parents between 2012 and 2018.
Isabelle's Georgetown application was submitted on Oct. 25, 2015. In it, the complaint alleges, she falsely stated that she played ''club tennis'' for 20 hours per week and was on the U.S. Tennis Association's All-Academic Team. For good measure, Isabelle noted that she was ranked in the top 50 high schoolers on the USTA Junior Girls Tennis for three years, as well.
Isabelle was admitted to Georgetown, and in May 2016, the Henriquez Family Trust ''donated'' $400,000 to the Key Worldwide Foundation, a non-profit that allegedly functioned as a front for Singer's payments to crooked coaches and proctors. The donation, according to a receipt delivered to Elizabeth Henriquez, would allow the foundation ''to move forward with our plans to provide educational and self-enrichment programs to disadvantaged youth.''
Since her matriculation at Georgetown, Isabelle has declared her major in Spanish and worked as a tutor at Hoya Helpers, a program wherein Georgetown students tutor local public schoolchildren in Washington, D.C. In a blog entry written for a sociology class, she described herself as ''very independent and not dependent on others when I need things.''
''I also find that I have a good moral compass,'' Isabelle wrote.
Isabelle, who did not respond to multiple requests for comment, has interned at Hercules Capital, her father's company, as well as on the investment banking team of Compass Point Research and Trading. Next summer, she is slated to work as a summer wealth management analyst at Jefferies, a New York-based financial services company.
A person who answered the phone at Compass Point would not confirm that Isabelle is still interning at the firm, and calls to Jefferies went unanswered. But Georgetown University representatives said Tuesday that the school is reserving the right to take action on charges that its admission system was compromised by a current student.
''Now that the government's investigation has detailed the extent of the alleged fraud, we are reviewing the details of the indictment and will be taking appropriate action,'' said Lisa Brown, vice president and general counsel at Georgetown, and Erik Smulson, vice president and senior adviser to Georgetown's president.
In regards to inquiries from The Daily Beast about whether Georgetown anticipates any disciplinary actions for students alleged to have cheated during standardized admissions tests, media relations manager Matt Hill said that Georgetown would refrain from commenting on individual students, in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.
According to the school's honor code, all students at Georgetown pledge ''to be honest in every academic endeavor, and to conduct myself honorably.'' Dismissal from the university, the most serious sanction that can be handed down by Georgetown's Honor Board, is considered ''the appropriate sanction for egregious first-time offenses, such as altering one's academic transcript.''
Even facing possible expulsion from Georgetown, however, Isabelle's potential punishment is nowhere near as severe as that faced by her parents. If convicted of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud'--a felony charge'--the Henriquezes could be sentenced to up to five years in prison.
Who Are the 33 Parents Charged in the College Admissions Cheating Scandal? - WSJ
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 14:20
Federal prosecutors charged 33 parents in a wide-ranging college admissions scheme, alleging that they paid for bogus entrance-exam scores and fake athletic achievements to get their children admitted to competitive colleges.
The names in bold are parents who were listed as defendants in the case. Unless otherwise noted, the parents didn't respond to requests seeking comment or couldn't be reached.
Greg Abbott is the founder of International Dispensing Corp. , a food and beverage packaging company. He and his wife, Marcia Abbott, live in New York City and Aspen, Colo.
Gamal Abdelaziz is a former senior executive of a resort and casino operator in Macau. He is a longtime executive of the gaming and hospitality industry, including a stint at Wynn Resorts Development.
Diane Blake is an executive at a retail merchandising firm, and Todd Blake is an entrepreneur and investor.
Jane Buckingham of Beverly Hills, Calif., is the chief executive of a boutique marketing company based in Los Angeles.
Gordon Caplan is a private-equity lawyer and co-chairman at Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP, an international law firm based in New York.
I-Hsin ''Joey'' Chen, a resident of Newport Beach, Calif. operates a provider of warehousing and related services for the shipping industry. Prosecution documents also spell his name as I-Hsien Chen.
Gregory Colburn is a physician and lives in Palo Alto, Calif., with his wife, Amy Colburn.
Robert Flaxman , a 62-year-old resident of Beverly Hills, Calif., is the founder and CEO of a real-estate development firm in Southern California. Prosecution documents also list him as a resident of Laguna Beach, Calif.
Manuel Henriquez is the founder, chairman and CEO of a publicly traded specialty finance company. He and his wife, Elizabeth Henriquez, live in Atherton, Calif.
Douglas Hodge spent 28 years at bond-investing giant Pacific Investment Management Co. in Newport Beach, Calif., and became chief executive in early 2014. He retired at the end of 2017. Mr. Hodge said he planned to defend himself against the charges and declined further comment.
Felicity Huffman , an actress, is best known for her role in the ''Desperate Housewives'' television series and the 2005 movie ''Transamerica.'' Ms. Huffman is married to actor William H. Macy, who wasn't named in the case.
Agustin Huneeus Jr. is an owner of vineyards in Napa, Calif., and elsewhere.
Bruce and Davina Isackson; Mr. Isackson is president of a real-estate development firm in California.
Michelle Janavs is a former executive of a large food manufacturer formerly owned by members of her family.
Elisabeth Kimmel of Las Vegas is the owner and president of a media company.
Marjorie Klapper of Menlo Park, Calif., is a co-owner of a jewelry business.
Lori Loughlin is an actress known for her role on the ABC sitcom ''Full House.'' A publicist for the 54-year-old actress declined to comment. Ms. Loughlin's husband, fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli, was also charged.
Toby MacFarlane of Del Mar, Calif., is a former senior executive at a title-insurance company.
Bill McGlashan is the founder and managing partner of TPG Growth, the arm of the private-equity firm that invests in fast-growing companies including Airbnb Inc. and Uber Technologies Inc. Mr. McGlashan is also the co-founder of TPG's Rise Fund, which is focused on socially and environmentally responsible investing. TPG said it placed Mr. McGlashan on indefinite administrative leave, effective immediately.
Marci Palatella is CEO of a liquor-distribution company in Burlingame, Calif., and owner of a Kentucky distillery. Ms. Palatella is married to Lou Palatella, who played for the San Francisco 49ers in the 1950s.
Peter Jan Sartorio is a packaged-food entrepreneur and founder of Elena's Foods in the San Francisco area.
Stephen Semprevivo is chief strategy and growth officer at Cydcor, a provider of outsourced sales services, according to his LinkedIn profile. He previously was general manager of Machinima, a once-popular digital content network bought by Warner Bros. and shuttered earlier this year.
David Sidoo is chief executive of Vancouver-based Advantage Lithium Corp. and East West Petroleum Corp., according the companies' websites. A lawyer for Mr. Sidoo said in a statement the charge against his client carries the presumption of innocence. ''We look forward to presenting our case in court, and ask that people don't rush to judgment in the meantime,'' Richard Schonfeld, the lawyer, said.
Devin Sloane is the founder and CEO of aquaTECTURE, a Los Angeles-based company that invests in water-treatment systems and technology. He has served as a trustee on the board of the Buckley School, a private K-12 school in Los Angeles.
John B. Wilson is the founder and CEO of a private-equity and real-estate development firm in Massachusetts.
Homayoun Zadeh who lives in Calabasas, Calif., is an associate professor of dentistry.
Robert Zangrillo of Miami, Fla., is the founder and CEO of a private investment firm.
Corrections & Amplifications Bruce Isackson is president of a real-estate investment firm. An earlier version of this article misspelled Mr. Isackson's name as Isaackson in one reference.
Green New Deal
Greta Thornberg nominated for Nobel Peace prize
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 14:50
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Swedish Teen Climate Activist Nominated for Nobel Prize | Time
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 14:52
Swedish environmental activist Greta Thunberg has been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize in recognition of her work leading a youth campaign to halt climate change.
Three Norwegian lawmakers put forth the 16-year-old's name.
''We have nominated Greta because the climate threat may be one of the most important causes of war and conflict,'' parliamentary representative Freddy Andre Oevstegaard told Norwegian media outlet VG.
''The massive movement Greta has set in motion is a very important peace contribution,'' he added.
The Brief NewsletterSign up to receive the top stories you need to know right now.
View SampleThe activist, who was named one of TIME's Most Influential Teens of 2018, has inspired hundreds of thousands of students at schools around the world to hold strikes in an effort to urge their leaders to act.
According to a U.N. report, global temperatures could rise by 1.5°C, a threshold that scientists say will bring dire consequences to the planet, by as early as 2030 if greenhouse gas emissions continue at the current rate.
In December 2018, Thunberg spoke at the U.N. Climate Change Conference in Poland, where she called out lawmakers and government bodies for their inaction.
At a World Economic Forum meeting in Davos, Switzerland, in January, she ended her speech by telling a silenced room that she wants leaders to ''behave like our house is on fire, because it is.''
As part of the #FridaysForFuture movement headed by the activist, tens of thousands of young people around the world will be skipping school this Friday to march for change.
Thunberg said on Twitter that almost 100 countries will be involved.
''I think we are only seeing the beginning. I think that change is on the horizon and the people will stand up for their future, Thunberg said in an interview with the Guardian.
Write to Hillary Leung at
It Sounds Crazy, But Fukushima, Chernobyl, And Three Mile Island Show Why Nuclear Is Inherently Safe
Mon, 11 Mar 2019 16:58
Fukushima was a public health catastrophe, just not one caused by radiation.Shutterstock
After a tsunami struck the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in Japan eight years ago today, triggering the meltdowns of three reactors, many believed it would result in a public health catastrophe.
''By now close to one million people have died of causes linked to the Chernobyl disaster,'' wrote Helen Caldicott, an Australian medical doctor, in The New York Times. Fukushima could ''far exceed Chernobyl in terms of the effects on public health.''
Many pro-nuclear people came to believe that the accident was proof that the dominant form of nuclear reactor, which is cooled by water, is fatally flawed. They called for radically different kinds of reactors to make the technology ''inherently safe.''
But now, eight years after Fukushima, the best-available science clearly shows that Caldicott's estimate of the number of people killed by nuclear accidents was off by one million. Radiation from Chernobyl will kill, at most, 200 people, while the radiation from Fukushima and Three Mile Island will kill zero people.
In other words, the main lesson that should be drawn from the worst nuclear accidents is that nuclear energy has always been inherently safe.
The Shocking Truth
The truth about nuclear power's safety is so shocking that it's worth taking a closer look at the worst accidents, starting with the worst of the worst: Chernobyl.
The nuclear plant is in Ukraine which, in 1986, the year of the accident, was a Soviet Republic. Operators lost control of an unauthorized experiment that resulted in the reactor catching fire.
There was no containment dome, and the fire spewed out radioactive particulate matter, which went all over the world, leading many to conclude that Chernobyl is not just the worst nuclear accident in history but is also the worst nuclear accident possible.
Twenty-eight firefighters died after putting out the Chernobyl fire. While the death of any firefighter is tragic, it's worth putting that number in perspective. Eighty-six firefighters died in the U.S. in 2018, and 343 firefighters died during the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
Since the Chernobyl accident, 19 first responders have died, according to the United Nations , for ''various reasons'' including tuberculosis, cirrhosis of the liver, heart attacks, and trauma. The U.N. concluded that ''the assignment of radiation as the cause of death has become less clear.''
What about cancer? By 2065 there may be 16,000 thyroid cancers; to date there have been 6,000 . Since thyroid cancer has a mortality rate of just one percent '-- it is an easy cancer to treat '-- expected deaths may be 160.
The World Health Organization claims on its web site that Chernobyl could result in the premature deaths of 4,000 people, but according to Dr. Geraldine Thomas, who started and runs the Chernobyl Tissue Bank, that number is based on a disproven methodology.
''That WHO number is based on LNT,'' she explained, using the acronym for the ''linear no-threshold'' method of extrapolating deaths from radiation.
LNT assumes that there is no threshold below which radiation is safe, but that assumption has been discredited over recent decades by multiple sources of data.
Support for the idea that radiation is harmless at low levels comes from the fact that people who live in places with higher background radiation, like Colorado, do not suffer elevated rates of cancer.
In fact, residents of Colorado, where radiation is higher because of high concentrations of uranium in the ground, enjoy some of the lowest cancer rates in the U.S.
Even relatively high doses of radiation cause far less harm than most people think. Careful, large, and long-term studies of survivors of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki offer compelling demonstration.
Cancer rates were just 10 percent higher among atomic blast survivors, most of whom never got cancer. Even those who received a dose 1,000 times higher than today's safety limit saw their lives cut short by an average of 16 months.
But didn't the Japanese government recently award a financial settlement to the family of a Fukushima worker who claimed his cancer was from the accident?
It did, but for reasons that were clearly political, and having to do with the Japanese government's consensus-based, conflict-averse style, as well as lingering guilt felt by elite policymakers toward Fukushima workers and residents, who felt doubly aggrieved by the tsunami and meltdowns.
The worker's cancer was highly unlikely to have come from Fukushima because, once again, the level of radiation workers received was far lower than the ones received by the Hiroshima/Nagasaki cohort that saw (modestly) higher cancer rates.
What about Three Mile Island? After the accident in 1979, Time Magazine ran a cover story that superimposed a glowing headline, ''Nuclear Nightmare,'' over an image of the plant. Nightmare ? More like a dream. What other major industrial technology can suffer a catastrophic failure and not kill anyone?
Remember when the Deepwater Horizon oil drilling rig caught on fire and killed 11 people? Four months later, a Pacific Gas & Electric natural gas pipeline exploded just south of San Francisco and killed eight people sleeping in their beds. And that was just one year, 2010.
The worst energy accident of all time was the 1975 collapse of the Banqiao hydroelectric dam in China. It collapsed and killed between 170,000 and 230,000 people .
Nuclear's worst accidents show that the technology has always been safe for the same, inherent reason that it has always had such a small environmental impact: the high energy density of its fuel.
Splitting atoms to create heat, rather than than splitting chemical bonds through fire, requires tiny amounts of fuel. A single Coke can of uranium can provide enough energy for an entire high-energy life.
When the worst occurs, and the fuel melts, the amount of particulate matter that escapes from the plant is insignificant in contrast to both the fiery explosions of fossil fuels and the daily emission of particulate matter from fossil- and biomass-burning homes, cars, and power plants, which kill seven million people a year.
Thanks to nuclear's inherent safety, the best-available science shows that nuclear has saved at least two million lives to date by preventing the burning of biomass and fossil fuels. Replacing, or not building, nuclear plants, thus results in more death.
In that sense, Fukushima did result in a public health catastrophe. Only it wasn't one created by the tiny amounts of radiation that escaped from the plant.
Anxiety Displacement and Panic
The Japanese government, in the view of Chernobyl expert Geraldine Thomas and other radiation experts, contributed to the widespread view of radiation as a super-potent toxin by failing to return residents to the Fukushima province after the accident, and for reducing radiation in soil and water to unnecessarily low levels.
The problem started with an over-evacuation. Sixty-thousand people were evacuated but only 30,000 have returned. While some amount of temporary evacuation might have been justified, there was simply never any reason for such a large, and long-term, evacuation.
About 2,000 people died from the evacuation, while others who were displaced suffered from loneliness, depression, suicide, bullying at school, and anxiety.
''With hindsight, we can say the evacuation was a mistake,'' said Philip Thomas, a professor of risk management at the University of Bristol and leader of a recent research project on nuclear accidents. ''We would have recommended that nobody be evacuated.''
Beyond the evacuation was the government's massively exaggerated clean-up of the soil. To give you a sense of how exaggerated the clean-up was, consider that the Colorado plateau was and is more (naturally) radioactive than most of Fukushima after the accident.
"There are areas of the world that are more radioactive than Colorado and the inhabitants there do not show increased rates of cancer," notes Dr. Thomas. And whereas radiation levels at Fukushima decline rapidly, "those areas stay high over a lifetime as the radiation is not the result of contamination but of natural background radiation."
Even residents living in the areas with the highest levels of soil contamination were unaffected by the radiation, according to a major study of nearly 8,000 residents in the two to three years since the accident.
In 2017, while visiting Fukushima for the second time, I lost my cool over this issue. Jet-lagged and hungry, and witnessing the ridiculous and expensive bull-dozing of the region's fertile topsoil into green plastic bags, I started grilling a scientist with the ministry of the environment.
Why were they destroying Fukushima's precious topsoil in order to reduce radiation levels that were already at levels far lower than posed a danger? Why was the government spending billions trying to do the same thing with water near the plant itself? Was nobody in Japan familiar with mainstream radiation health science?
At first the government scientist responded by simply repeating the official line '-- they were remediating the top soil to remove the radiation from the accident.
I decided to force the issue. I repeated my question. My translator told me that the expert didn't understand my question. I started arguing with my translator.
Then, at that moment, the government scientist started talking again. I could tell by the tone of his voice that he was saying something different.
''Every scientist and radiation expert in the world who comes here says the same thing,'' he said. ''We know we don't need to reduce radiation levels for public health. We're doing it because the people want us to.''
The truth of the matter had been acknowledged, and the tension that had hung between us had finally broken. '' Arigato gozaimasu !'' I said, genuinely grateful for the man's honesty.
The man's face was sad when he explained the situation, but he was also calmer. The mania behind his insistence that the ''contaminated'' topsoil had required ''cleaning'' had evaporated.
And I wasn't mad anymore either, just relieved. I understood his dilemma. He had only been the repeating official dogma because his job, and the larger culture and politics, required him to.
Such has been the treatment of radiation fears by scientists and government officials, not just in Japan, for over 60 years.
There is no evidence that low levels of radiation hurt people, but rather than be blunt about that, scientists have, in the past, shaded the truth often out of a misguided sense of erring on the side of caution, but thereby allowing widespread misunderstanding of radiation to persist.
We also now know that when societies don't use nuclear, they mostly use fossil fuels, not renewables. After Fukushima, Japan closed its nuclear plants and saw deadly air pollution skyrocket.
The biggest losers, as per usual, are the most vulnerable: those with respiratory diseases, such as emphysema and asthma, children, the elderly, the sick, and the poor, who tend to live in the most polluted areas of cities.
It's also clear that people displace anxieties about other things onto nuclear accidents. We know from in-depth qualitative research conducted in the 1970s that young people in the early part of that decade were displacing fears of nuclear bombs onto nuclear plants.
Nuclear plants are viewed as little bombs and nuclear accidents are viewed as little atomic explosions, complete with fall-out and the dread of contamination.
It is impossible to view the Japanese public's panicked overreaction to Fukushima and not see it as partly motivated by the horror of having seen 15,897 citizens instantly killed, and another 2,533 gone missing, after a tsunami hammered the region.
The sociologist Kyle Cleveland argues persuasively that Fukushima was a ''moral panic,'' in that the panic was motivated by a desire by the Japanese news media and public for revenge against an industrial and technical elite viewed as uncaring, arrogant, and corrupt.
Seeing Opportunity In Fear
After Fukushima, investors poured millions into so-called ''advanced nuclear'' start-up companies proposing to use chemicals, metals, or gases instead of water for cooling the uranium or thorium fuels in nuclear plants.
Often, they inadvertently reinforced the worst of the public's fears. It's one thing when anti-nuclear activists fear-monger about Fukushima, it's quite another when supposedly pro-nuclear advocates do so.
Worse, the notion that one could look at the design of a nuclear plant and declare it safer than existing nuclear plants is transcience at best, pseudoscience at worst.
To compare the relative safety of different kinds of nuclear reactors one would need decades of operational data, which don't exist for non-existent designs. And even then, one would likely need a lot more accidents and deaths to tease out any kind of correlation.
When pressed as to supposed safety advantages, advocates of radical innovation in nuclear often slip into claiming that this or that design will be far cheaper than today's designs.
But the cheapest nuclear is the kind that humans have the most experience building, operating, and regulating. Slow, conservative, and incremental innovation is what has made nuclear plants cheaper, while radical innovation has made it more expensive.
Was anything better for the U.S. nuclear industry than Three Mile Island? Not a single nuclear industry executive would have said so at the time. But in the decades since, many of them came to believe precisely that.
In response to Three Mile Island, the nuclear industry stepped up training, checklists, and better oversight. The result was that nuclear plants in the U.S. went from operating at 55 percent capacity factor, on average, to operating at over 90 percent capacity factor.
Anti-nuclear activists have long claimed that there is a trade-off between nuclear safety and economics when it comes to the operation of plants, when in reality the opposite is the case. With improved performance came far higher income from electricity sales.
Might Japanese nuclear leaders look back on Fukushima the same way one day? That depends on what they do now.
To date, Japanese leaders have tried to make amends to the public for the Fukushima accident, but they've done so in ways that have reinforced the view of radiation as a super-potent toxin, and without building any greater trust in the technology.
For decades, nuclear leaders in Japan and the U.S. reinforced the notion that nuclear is an inherently dangerous technology, but one that they could control. When it became clear that they couldn't control it, the public understandably assumed that they had been put in danger.
The truth is, in part, more reassuring. The radiant particulate matter that escapes from the worst nuclear accidents isn't all that dangerous because there isn't all that much of it.
But another lesson is that humans are never in absolute control of our technologies. If we were, then nobody would die from exploding natural gas pipelines, plane crashes, or collapsed hydroelectric dams.
The question is not how humans can gain absolute mastery, since that's impossible, but rather which machines, on balance, deliver the most good with the least harm. On that metric, nuclear power has always been, inherently, the safest way to power civilization.
French government working on 'more ambitious' energy and climate bill | Reuters
Mon, 11 Mar 2019 16:59
FILE PHOTO: French President Emmanuel Macron watches as German Chancellor Angela Merkel departs after a meeting at the Elysee Palace in Paris, France, February 27, 2019. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes/File Photo
PARIS (Reuters) - A draft energy and climate law due to be presented to French cabinet ministers on Monday has been postponed so that it can be reworked with more ambitious environmental goals, President Emmanuel Macron's office said on Sunday.
The proposals had been criticized by climate change campaigners and a high-level state-backed economic affairs committee for being too vague on some targets, including an aim for France to be ''carbon neutral'' by 2050.
Macron has sought to take a lead on the global stage in the fight against climate change, although some of his plans, including an aborted bid to raise fuel taxes, have stirred a backlash among voters at home, sparking a wave of protests.
He has vowed, however, to press on with green policies, while trying to balance this push with measures to help lower-income households or others who might be affected by extra costs.
The draft law is meant to provide a broad framework on climate goals, laying the ground for subsequent, more precise commitments, including on how France will cut its reliance on nuclear energy.
The reworked bill will include a more detailed outline of France's target for reducing greenhouse gases, the Elysee said.
The bill will still be on track to go to the lower house of parliament to be examined by lawmakers in June, the president's office added.
Reporting by Simon Carraud and Marine Pennetier; Writing by Sarah White; Editing by Kevin Liffey
Whites Contribute More To Air Pollution '-- Minorities Bear The Burden : Shots - Health News : NPR
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 17:14
An elevated view of smog and air pollution in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, USA. Dave G. Kelly/Getty Images hide caption
toggle caption Dave G. Kelly/Getty Images An elevated view of smog and air pollution in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, USA.
Dave G. Kelly/Getty Images Pollution, much like wealth, is not distributed equally in the United States.
Scientists and policymakers have long known that black and Hispanic Americans tend to live in neighborhoods with more pollution of all kinds, than white Americans. And because pollution exposure can cause a range of health problems, this inequity could be a driver of unequal health outcomes across the U.S.
A study published Monday in the journal PNAS adds a new twist to the pollution problem by looking at consumption. While we tend to think of factories or power plants as the source of pollution, those polluters wouldn't exist without consumer demand for their products.
The researchers found that air pollution is disproportionately caused by white Americans' consumption of goods and services, but disproportionately inhaled by black and Hispanic Americans.
"This paper is exciting and really quite novel," says Anjum Hajat, an epidemiologist at the University of Washington who was not involved in the study. "Inequity in exposure to air pollution is well documented, but this study brings in the consumption angle."
Hajat says the study reveals an inherent unfairness: "If you're contributing less to the problem, why do you have to suffer more from it?"
The study, led by engineering professor Jason Hill at the University of Minnesota, took over six years to complete. According to the paper's first author Christopher Tessum, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Washington, the idea stemmed from a question at a conference.
Tessum presented earlier research on how blacks and Hispanics are often more exposed to air pollutants than whites. After he finished, someone asked "if it would be possible to connect exposure to air pollution to who is doing the actual consuming," says Tessum. According to Tessum, no one had ever tried to answer that question.
It's a big, complicated issue, but studying it could address a fundamental question: Are those who produce pollution, through their consumption of goods and services, fairly sharing in the costs?
What kind of data could even answer such a multifaceted question? Let's break it down:
For any given area in the U.S., the researchers would need to know how polluted the air was, what communities were exposed to pollution, and the health effects of that level of exposure.
Then, for the same area the researchers would need to identify the sources of that exposure (coal plants, factories, agriculture to name a few), and get a sense of what goods and services stem from those emissions (electricity, transportation, food).
Finally, whose consumption of goods and services drives those sectors of the economy?
"The different kinds of data, by themselves, aren't that complicated," says Tessum. "It's linking them where things get a little trickier."
The most relevant air pollutant metric for human health is "particulate matter 2.5" or PM2.5. It represents the largest environmental health risk factor in the United States with higher levels linked to more cardiovascular problems, respiratory illness, diabetes and even birth defects. PM2.5 pollution is mostly caused by human activities, like burning fossil fuels or agriculture.
The EPA collects these data through the National Emissions Inventory, which collates emissions from specific emitters, like coal plants or factories, measures of mobile polluters like cars or planes, and natural events like wildfires, painting a detailed picture of pollution across the U.S.
The researchers generated maps of where different emitters, like agriculture or construction, caused PM2.5 pollution. Coal plants produced pockets of pollution in West Virginia and Pennsylvania, while agricultural emissions were concentrated in the Midwest and California's central valley. "We then tied in census data to understand where different racial-ethnic groups live to understand exposure patterns," says Hill.
Tessum then used previous research on the health effects of different exposure levels to estimate how many premature deaths per year (out of an estimated 102,000 from domestic human-caused emissions) could be linked to each emitter.
"We wanted to take this study further by ascribing responsibility of these premature deaths to different sectors [of the economy], and ultimately to the consumers, and maybe consumers of different racial and ethnic groups," says Hill.
To do that, the researchers actually worked backwards, following consumer spending to different sectors of the economy, and then ultimately to the main emitters of air pollution.
Consider one major contributor to emissions: agriculture. Consumer expenditure surveys from the Bureau of Labor Statistics provide detailed data on how much money households spend in various sectors of the economy, including food.
These data gave the researchers an idea of how much blacks, Hispanics, and whites spend on food per year. Other expenditures, like energy or entertainment, are also measured. Taken together these data represent the consumption patterns of the three groups.
To translate dollars spent on food into air pollution levels, the researchers traced money through the economy. Using data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the researchers can estimate, for example, how much grocery stores or restaurants spend on food. Eventually, these dollars are linked back to the primary emitters '-- the farms growing the food or the fuel that farmers buy to run their tractors.
The researchers have now completed the causal chain, from dollars spent at the grocery story, to the amount of pollution emitted into the atmosphere. Completing this chain for each source of pollution revealed whose consumption drives air pollution, and who suffers from it.
After accounting for population size differences, whites experience about 17 percent less air pollution than they produce, through consumption, while blacks and Hispanics bear 56 and 63 percent more air pollution, respectively, than they cause by their consumption, according to the study.
"These patterns didn't seem to be driven by different kinds of consumption," says Tessum, "but different overall levels." In other words, whites were just consuming disproportionately more of the same kinds of goods and services resulting in air pollution than minority communities.
"These results, as striking as they are, aren't really surprising," says Ana Diez Roux, an epidemiologist at Drexel University who was not involved in the study. "But it's really interesting to see consumption patterns rigorously documented suggesting that minority communities are exposed to pollution that they bear less responsibility for."
Diez Roux thinks this is a good first step. "They certainly make assumptions in their analysis that might be questioned down the line, but I doubt that the overall pattern they found will change," she says.
Tessum points to some hopeful results from the study. PM2.5 exposure by all groups has fallen by about 50 percent from 2002 to 2015, driven in part by regulation and population movement away from polluted areas. But the inequity remains mostly unchanged.
While more research is needed to fully understand these differences, the results of this study raise questions about how to address these inequities.
Tessum stresses that "we're not saying that we should take away white people's money, or that people shouldn't be able to spend money." He suggests continuing to strive to make economic activity and consumption less polluting could be a way to manage and lessen the inequities.
Diez Roux thinks that stronger measures may be necessary.
"If want to ameliorate this inequity, we may need to rethink how we build our cities and how they grow, our dependence on automobile transportation," says Diez Roux. "These are hard things we have to consider."
Jonathan Lambert is an intern on NPR's Science Desk. You can follow him on Twitter: @evolambert
Air pollution race gap: Blacks, Hispanics breathe air whites pollute
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 13:13
While the air pollution in the U.S. has gotten cleaner in the past decade, pollution inequity has remained high. USA TODAY
The air that Americans breathe isn't equal.
Blacks and Hispanics disproportionately breathe air that's been polluted by non-Hispanic whites, according to a study. This new research quantifies for the first time the racial gap between who causes air pollution '' and who breathes it.
"Pollution is disproportionately caused by whites, but disproportionately inhaled by black and Hispanic minorities," the study said.
Poor air quality remains the largest environmental health risk in the United States, the study warns. In fact, with 100,000 deaths per year, more Americans die from air pollution than car crashes and murders combined.
''Even though minorities are contributing less to the overall problem of air pollution, they are affected by it more,'' said study co-author Jason Hill, an engineering professor at the University of Minnesota, who is white. ''Is it fair (that) I create more pollution and somebody else is disproportionately affected by it?''
Hill said that while the air in the U.S. has gotten cleaner in the past decade, pollution inequity has remained stubbornly high.
"What is especially surprising is just how large pollution inequity is and has been for well over a decade," Hill said.
According to a new study, blacks and Hispanics disproportionately breathe air that's been polluted by whites. This new research quantifies for the first time the racial gap between who causes air pollution '' and who breathes it. (Photo: acilo / Getty Images)
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The type of pollution analyzed in the study is known as "PM 2.5" '' tiny grains of "particulate matter" that are especially dangerous to human health because they can get deep into our lungs. Those particles, at 2.5 micrometers far smaller than the width of a human hair, are produced by car tailpipes, power plant smokestacks and burning materials.
The study found that black and Hispanic Americans bear a "pollution burden:" Blacks are exposed to about 56 percent more pollution than is caused by their consumption. For Hispanics, it is slightly higher '' 63 percent.
However, non-Hispanic whites experience a "pollution advantage," meaning they breathe about 17 percent less air pollution than whites cause.
The formula scientists used in their study is driven by disparities in the amount of goods and services that groups consume and in the exposure to the resulting pollution.
''On average, whites tend to consume more than minorities. It's because of wealth,'' Hill said.
For example, the scientists found that whites spend more money on pollution-intensive goods and services than do blacks and Hispanics, which means they generate more pollution than the other groups do.
Non-Hispanic whites experience about 17 percent less air pollution than they cause, while Hispanics are exposed to about 63 percent more air pollution than they cause. And blacks are exposed to about 56 percent more air pollution than they cause. Dark blue arrows indicate pollution produced while the light blue arrows show pollution exposure. (Photo: University of Minnesota / Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences)
''Someone had to make the pen you bought at the store,'' said study co-author Julian Marshall, an engineering professor at the University of Washington. ''We wanted to look at where the pollution associated with making that pen is located. Is it close to where people live? And who lives there?''
For this study, the category "non-Hispanic whites" also includes Asian-Americans and Native Americans. This is based on the source that the researchers used: government data on personal expenditures from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Other experts agreed with the research: ''These findings confirm what most grassroots environmental justice leaders have known for decades, 'whites are dumping their pollution on poor people and people of color,''' said Texas Southern University public affairs professor Robert Bullard, who was not part of the research. Bullard, often called the father of environmental justice, is African-American.
Researchers say their pollution inequity formula could be used on other types of environmental burdens.
"The approach we establish in this study could be extended to other pollutants, locations and groupings of people," Marshall said. "When it comes to determining who causes air pollution '' and who breathes that pollution '' this research is just the beginning."
The study was published Monday in the peer-reviewed journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Contributing: The Associated Press
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Winter 'will no longer EXIST' in Australia by 2050 '' and will be replaced by 40C 'new summer' season, experts warn
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 15:21
WINTER will disappear completely in Australia within the next 30 years, climate researchers have warned.
The nation's chilliest season will instead by replaced by a "new summer" '' with 40C heatwaves sustained across the country.
Australia is expected to lose its winter by 2050, researchers warnAustralia is known for being generally very hot, even in winter months.
But experts now warn that a changing climate will heat Australia up so much that it won't technically have a winter any more.
There'll still be a spring, summer and autumn, but researchers at the Australian National University now say the fourth season will be "new summer".
This period will fall roughly between mid-December and late February, although it changes slightly depending on the area of Australia you're looking at. For instance, in Sydney the "new summer" extends right through October and March.
ANU / The Sun
New climate mapping reveals historical temperatures in areas of AustraliaANU / The Sun
Most of Australia is expected to lose winter, and instead gain a toasty "new summer"The "new summer" season will take place during summer proper, while "winter" is absorbed completely by spring and autumn in the July/August period.
Australia's "new summer" will be a period of the year "where temperatures will consisntely peak...well above 40C for a sustained period", researchers warn.
The information is based on climate data from the Queensland Government LongPaddock project and models of climate change based on pattern data from the UK's Met Office.
"We looked at the historical average temperatures of each season and compared them to the projected data," explained Dr Geoff Hinchliffe.
"And what we find everywhere is that there's really no period of a sustained or lasting winter."
ANU / The Sun
The map lets you trawl Australia for changing climate infoANU
Experts say that these forecasts might not happen if we can successfully limit global warmingResearchers were able to transform this data into an interactive map that reveals how many degrees temperatures will rise in different locations across Australia.
The map also shows how many more days over 30- and 40-degrees a place will have in 2050 compared to today.
And it's bad news if you're a sun-fearing Australian, apparently.
"In 30 years' time, winter as we know it will be non-existent," Dr Hinchcliffe said.
"It ceases to be everywhere apart from a few places in Tasmania."
Try the tool hereFor instance, in Sydney, the average daily maximum between 1960 to 1990 was around 22.1C.
But if climate change isn't halted, then researchers say that this figure will rise to 25.4C by 2050.
The average daily maximum will be 3.3C hotter and winter will technically disappear.
Summers will get warmer too, with extreme summer temperatures in Sydney expected to be 2.7C higher than the 1960-90 summer average.
And there will also be 13% less on average too, it's claimed.
"We will have up to 62 days over 30C '' 47 days more than the 1960-90 average [in Sydney]," researchers warn.
"As well as the data, we also focused on developing the most effective visual forms for conveying how climate change is going to affect specific locations," said Dr Hinchcliffe.
"That meant using colour, shape and size around a dial composition showing a whole year's worth of temperature values in a single snapshot.
"It makes it visually rich and interesting and gives a lot of detail in a way that connects emotionally with people by locating it in their own town."
Global warming '' how does it work?
Here's what you need to know...
The greenhouse effect is a phenomenon that warms the Earth's surface and airIt's caused by gases in the air that trap energy that travels to Earth from the SunThe gases that cause this effect are known as "greenhouse gases"Common greennhouse gases include methane and carbone dioxideThis greenhouse effect is important, because it makes sure Earth stays warm enough to support lifeWithout the greenhouse effect, heat would escape into space '' significantly cooling EarthBut there is a risk that humans are releasing too many greenhouse gases into the atmosphereThis can be caused by burning coal, oil and other fossil fuelsBy trapping more heat, the temperature of Earth rises '' which is believed to be one of the main causes of global warmingQUANTUM TIME Scientists build world's first 'time machine' in experiment defying physics
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LUNAR LONG-HAUL Toyota's self-driving 'lunar MINIBUS' will carry astronauts across the moon
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Climate change is now in 'overdrive' as experts warn Greenland ice melt is 'off the charts'.
Researchers recently proved that climate change is to blame for rising sea levels '' as the risk of 'megatsunamis' grows.
Scientists say Earth's oceans will turn 'deep green' by the end of the century '' and climate changed is being blamed.
Are you worried about climate change? Let us know in the comments!
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SPECIAL REPORT-Online activists are silencing us, scientists...
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 20:07
By Kate Kelland
LONDON, March 13 (Reuters) - The emails, tweets and blog posts in the "abuse" folder that Michael Sharpe keeps on his computer continue to pile up. Eight years after he published results of a clinical trial that found some patients with chronic fatigue syndrome can get a little better with the right talking and exercise therapies, the Oxford University professor is subjected to almost daily, often anonymous, intimidation.
A Twitter user who identifies himself as a patient called Paul Watton (@thegodofpleasur) wrote: "I really am looking forward to his professional demise and his much-deserved public humiliation." Another, Anton Mayer (@MECFSNews), likened Sharpe's behaviour to "that of an abuser."
Watton and Mayer have never been treated by Sharpe for their chronic fatigue syndrome, a little-understood condition that can bring crushing tiredness and pain. Nor have they met him, they told Reuters. They object to his work, they said, because they think it suggests their illness is psychological. Sharpe, a professor of psychological medicine, says that isn't the case. He believes that chronic fatigue syndrome is a biological condition that can be perpetuated by social and psychological factors.
Sharpe is one of around a dozen researchers in this field worldwide who are on the receiving end of a campaign to discredit their work. For many scientists, it's a new normal: From climate change to vaccines, activism and science are fighting it out online. Social media platforms are supercharging the battle.
Reuters contacted a dozen professors, doctors and researchers with experience of analysing or testing potential treatments for chronic fatigue syndrome. All said they had been the target of online harassment because activists objected to their findings. Only two had definite plans to continue researching treatments. With as many as 17 million people worldwide suffering this disabling illness, scientific research into possible therapies should be growing, these experts said, not dwindling. What concerns them most, they said, is that patients could lose out if treatment research stalls.
A spokesperson for Twitter said the platform "exists to serve the public conversation. Its strength lies in providing people with a diversity of perspectives into critical issues '' all in real-time." Where someone used anonymity for bad purposes, Twitter would take immediate action, the spokesperson added.
Chronic fatigue syndrome, also known as myalgic encephalomyelitis, or CFS/ME, is described by specialists as a "complex, multisystem, and often devastating disorder." Symptoms include overwhelming fatigue, joint pain, headaches, sleep problems and isolation. It can render patients bed- or house-bound for years. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or CDC, estimates the illness costs the U.S. economy $17 billion to $24 billion annually in medical bills and lost incomes. It is thought to affect as many as 2.5 million people in the United States.
No cause has been identified, no formal diagnosis established and no cure developed. Many researchers cite evidence that talking therapies and behavioural approaches can help in some cases. Yet some patients and their advocates say this amounts to a suggestion that the syndrome might be a mental illness or psychosomatic, a notion that enrages them. They would prefer that research efforts focus on identifying a biological cause or diagnosis.
One of those leading the campaign against research into psychological therapies for CFS/ME is David Tuller, a former journalist with a doctor of public health degree from University of California, Berkeley. Tuller, who describes himself as an investigator, not a campaigner, told Reuters he wants to help CFS/ME patients.
Crowdfunded by a global band of CFS/ME sufferers, their families and patient activists, Tuller has since October 2015 published more than 140 blog posts amounting to tens of thousands of words attacking studies of psychological treatments and conferences that have showcased them. He's recently complained to the CDC, New York's Columbia University and Netflix. In 2018, Netflix ran a docu-series about CFS/ME patients. It said it wanted to show the difficulties of patients "suffering from elusive and misunderstood illnesses."
Tuller refers to researchers who explore and test treatments for CFS/ME that feature a psychological element as "insane" and a "cabal" suffering from "mass delusion." They are bent on pursuing "bogus and really terrible research," he told Reuters.
Sharpe no longer conducts research into CFS/ME treatments, focusing instead on helping severely ill cancer patients. "It's just too toxic," he explained. Of more than 20 leading research groups who were publishing treatment studies in high-quality journals 10 years ago, Sharpe said, only one or two continue to do so.
The world's largest trials registry,, indicates that over the past decade there has been a decline in the number of new CFS/ME treatment trials being launched. From 2010 to 2014, 33 such trials started. From 2015 until the present, the figure dropped to around 20. This decline comes at a time when research into ways to help patients should be growing, not falling, because the condition is more widely recognised, scientists interviewed by Reuters said.
Reuters spoke to three specialists in CFS/ME in Britain, Denmark and the Netherlands who have reported receiving online abuse but continue to work in the field. The specialist in the Netherlands, a psychologist who works at a chronic fatigue treatment centre, said that a few years ago, research teams there had five treatment studies looking at cognitive behavioural therapies for CFS/ME patients. Now, they have no treatment studies at all. Junior researchers are wary of entering the field because of the abuse they've seen others suffer, said the specialist in Britain, a doctor who spoke on condition of anonymity.
Per Fink, a professor at the Research Clinic for Functional Disorders at Denmark's Aarhus University Hospital, said he kept going because he didn't want to let down patients, some severely ill, who are "open to any treatment that may help them."
The term myalgic encephalomyelitis was first used in 1956 to describe a condition associated with post-illness fatigue among patients at London's Royal Free Hospital. Thirty years later, the name chronic fatigue syndrome was coined. Now, the combination term CFS/ME is used by most people '' patients, doctors and researchers '' and by the U.S. National Institutes of Health.
The trigger for the condition is not known, although it can follow a bout of severe illness or extreme physical endurance, or a viral infection such as glandular fever. There is no biomarker or blood test to establish diagnosis, and patients often face misunderstanding from family, friends and doctors. Patient advocates say the condition has a history of being dismissed as "yuppie flu" or plain indolence.
With no pharmacological or physiological treatments on the horizon, scientists and doctors explored psychiatry and psychology for ways to ease the symptoms. Some patients and campaigners say that diverted attention and funding away from scientific efforts to define what causes CFS/ME and how it can be properly diagnosed.
Simon Wessely, a professor of psychological medicine at King's College London and former president of Britain's Royal College of Psychiatrists, said he decided to stop conducting research into treatment approaches for CFS/ME several years ago because he felt the online abuse was detracting from his work with patients.
But he is still the subject of what he calls "relentless internet stalking." Recent tweets directed at Wessely include one accusing him of playing "pathetic ego driven games" with the lives of people with CFS/ME, another saying "Wessely is a dangerous and evil individual" and another saying "We die, b/c of u."
Wessely's employers at King's College London have taken advice on the potential risk and have instituted X-ray scans of his mail, he says. "Everything I say and do in public, and sometimes even in private, is pored over and scrutinised," he said.
Wessely's experiences are echoed by Aarhus University Hospital's Per Fink, who runs a clinic that offers patients exercise and talking therapies.
Fink said he and the organisers of a conference he addressed at Columbia University in New York in October 2018 were hounded by complaints and protests from CFS/ME activists. A petition calling for Fink to be disinvited was signed by 10,000 people. Tuller '' who in his blog wrote that the person who invited Per Fink to speak at the conference must be "uninformed or stupid or both" '' called Fink a "scary guy" whose methods had "destroyed families." Tuller urged readers of his blog to go to the Columbia conference and demonstrate.
Describing himself as a doctor and researcher "who just does my job in an attempt to help people," Fink told Reuters his trip to New York was worse than anything he's experienced before. "They are scaring people away," he said. "Doctors don't want to speak about it '' they try to keep a low profile. And many researchers and clinicians say they won't go into this area of therapy because it's so difficult."
The idea of critics or activists challenging researchers and seeking to hold science to account isn't new. Most researchers say they are happy to engage in discussion. But with social media, email and internet now accessible from almost every home, mass communication gives online activists a voice with unprecedented power. In the field of CFS/ME research, it's often personal. Those at the centre of it say it's gotten out of control.
"The toxicity of it permeates everything," Sharpe told Reuters.
The campaign to have evidence-backed treatments discredited was "doing a terrible disservice to sufferers from this condition," said Wessely. "Patients are the losers here."
At the heart of the attacks on Sharpe, Wessely and other chronic fatigue treatment researchers is a study known as the PACE trial, which sought to evaluate the effectiveness of different types of therapy in CFS/ME patients.
Published in The Lancet medical journal in 2011, the results found that cognitive behavioural therapy '' designed to help patients change their thinking and behaviour '' and graded exercise therapy '' in which patients are encouraged to start from very low levels of daily activity and then incrementally raise them '' are safe and moderately effective treatments for some people.
Richard Horton, the editor of The Lancet, said his journal had received emails and letters about PACE but has no plans to retract it. He said what is needed to allow for progress in any field of medical research is "an open and respectful approach by all parties to one another."
In April last year, Tuller secured $87,500 in online crowdfunding to "debunk" the PACE trial findings. He refers to the study as "a piece of crap" and "garbage" and says he is determined to see it discredited. At speaking events filmed and shown on YouTube, he has ripped up copies of the study to show his feelings about it. Tuller has also posted a 15,000 word review of it via the website of a Berkeley colleague.
Tuller cut his teeth as an AIDS activist in the 1980s. Now 62, he blogs, sends hundreds of letters and emails, and travels the world giving speeches and holding meetings as supporters send him donations and praise for his CFS/ME campaign. Tuller himself hasn't conducted or published any peer-reviewed clinical trials on CFS/ME. He has co-authored a critique of PACE.
His argument is that the therapies evaluated in the PACE trial are based on a misguided hypothesis that CFS/ME patients suffer from "unhelpful" beliefs that they have a biological disease, and that their symptoms of fatigue are made worse by deconditioning due to inactivity. He also says he thinks the trial's methodology was flawed. The scientists involved reject those arguments.
"My goal is to completely discredit the PACE trial," Tuller told Reuters. "And if they have moved out of the research field, then that's great," he said of the CFS/ME researchers he's targeting. "They shouldn't be in the field. They shouldn't be doing research at all."
Tuller disputes that his campaigning amounts to harassment. In comments to Reuters in an interview and in emails, he said his criticisms are valid. And he added: "I refuse to act in the normal bounds of academia." Asked about his motivation, he said he does not have the condition. He said he had a long-time friend who was diagnosed with CFS/ME in the early 1990s but has "no other personal stake." He said his work is helping patients by "clearing out the bad science to make way for some good science," such as research into the condition's biological basis.
Another campaign, which goes by the acronym MAIMES, or Medical Abuse in ME Sufferers, operates from Britain. It has a standard letter for people to send to their local member of parliament demanding a public inquiry into the PACE trial. There's also a Facebook page called "Abuse of ME Patients by Health Care Professionals" which has some 680 followers. The page runs stories from unnamed patients who accuse Sharpe and others of harming sufferers by calling them "lazy" and forcing them to exercise when they can't.
The campaigner and doctor behind MAIMES, Sarah Myhill, has posted YouTube videos setting out her views: "I liken it to child abuse," she says in one that has been viewed more than 8,000 times. "This amounts to a form of abuse, because these people" '' CFS/ME patients '' "do not have the energy to defend themselves." Myhill has published several books advocating what she calls a "naturopath's" approach to treating symptoms of CFS/ME '' one using a tailored combination of nutrition, rest and medicines. She hasn't published peer-reviewed research on the efficacy of her approach.
Myhill told Reuters that she had complained to the General Medical Council '' the body that maintains the official register of medical practitioners in the UK '' about Sharpe and other scientists involved in the PACE trial, but her complaint was rejected. Myhill showed Reuters the letter she received from the General Medical Council. It said it was "not able to identify any issues which would require us to open an investigation" into the researchers. Contacted by Reuters, the Council did not elaborate.
As well as dissuading researchers from working in the CFS/ME field, scientists fear that pressure from campaigners has also begun to show in the wording of guidance for patients and doctors from national health authorities. In the United States, the CDC has removed references to cognitive behavioural therapy and graded exercise therapy from its website.
The head of the CDC's chronic viral diseases branch, Elizabeth Unger, told Reuters this was done to remove jargon and medical terms that are not widely understood by the public. "We received feedback that the terms were confusing and too frequently misinterpreted," she said in an email response to questions.
Unger said the CDC's advice stresses that each CFS/ME patient's needs are different. "For some, carefully managing exercise and activities can be helpful," she said. "Likewise, some patients may find that talking with a therapist helps them."
In Britain, government guidelines on treating CFS/ME published by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), currently recommend cognitive behavioural therapy and graded exercise. But these too are under review, due to be revised and republished by 2020. A source close to NICE told Reuters the agency had been subjected to "a lot of lobbying" aimed at getting it to review the guidelines "and in particular to change recommendations around graded exercise therapy and cognitive behavioural therapy." The source declined to go into detail about who was behind the lobbying.
Publishers, too, are feeling the heat. In a move described as "disproportionate and poorly justified" by the researchers involved, editors of the Cochrane Reviews science journals said in October that they would be temporarily withdrawing a review that analysed evidence from eight studies on exercise therapy for CFS/ME patients.
Cochrane Reviews evaluate the best science on a given subject and are considered a gold standard in scientific literature. The review in question, led by a Norwegian research team and published by Cochrane in April 2017, had concluded there was moderate quality evidence to show that "exercise therapy had a positive effect on people's daily physical functioning, sleep and self-ratings of overall health."
Tuller told Reuters in emails in October that he considered the Cochrane Review to be "fraught with bias" and said its authors have bought into "delusions that these studies (the ones they reviewed) represent good science." After hearing news of the review's temporary withdrawal, Tuller said he'd had a "long meeting" with Cochrane editors in Britain last summer, and had "pressed them hard." "So did others," he said.
Cochrane's editor in chief, David Tovey, confirmed that he had met with Tuller, but said the meeting had nothing to do with his decision to temporarily withdraw the review. He said complaints about the review from patients and campaigners had raised "important questions" about how the review was conducted and reported which he and his fellow editors felt needed to be addressed.
Lillebeth Larun, a scientist at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health who led the Cochrane Review, is one of several scientists who vociferously disagreed with Tovey's decision to withdraw it. For her, the move is a sign that the activists who have plagued her for years have now got to her editors. In the decade or so that she's been conducting research in this area, she told Reuters, she's endured online attacks and abusive emails, and at various points had to take a break from working due to the pressure. Returning to a CFS/ME project would make her feel physically sick with anxiety.
"Attempts to limit, undermine or manipulate evidence based results, pressure or intimidate researchers into or away from any given conclusions, will ultimately have a negative effect," she told Reuters. "It will only lead to those researchers choosing to work in other areas and reduce the resources dedicated to providing the help patients so desperately need."
Some CFS/ME patients disagree. Reuters contacted the Twitter user who identifies himself as Paul Watton to ask him about his online attacks. Speaking by phone, Watton said he has been ill with CFS/ME and unable to work in his former job as a builder for 15 years, and feels let down by the medical establishment. Reuters was unable to independently verify his account.
"I agree entirely with what David Tuller says," Watton told Reuters. "This is a chronic illness for which there is '' currently '' no curative treatment."
In Britain there are at least 50 specialist chronic fatigue syndrome services that treat around 8,000 adults each year under government guidelines, offering behavioural and psychological therapies. Research published in July 2017 showed around a third of adults affected by the illness who attended these specialist clinics reported substantial improvement in their health. In the survey, more than 1,000 patients were asked about fatigue, physical function, general function, mood, pain and sleep problems before and after getting the services.
Colin Barton, chairman of the Sussex and Kent CFS/ME Society '' a patient group in southern England '' said talking therapies and graded exercise helped him recover to the point that he can lead an almost normal life. He told Reuters that in his experience, patients who talk about having been helped by psychological or graded exercise therapies come in for abuse just like the researchers. They face accusations that they were never ill in the first place; that their condition was misdiagnosed; and that their recovery is therefore fake, he said. As a result, he said, many recovering or recovered CFS/ME patients feel forced to withdraw from the debate. (reporting by Kate Kelland; editing by Janet McBride and John Blanton)
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
Boeing vs Airbus
Boeing 737 Max crashes put spotlight on FAA under Trump '-- Quartz
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 09:49
On Jan. 2, 2018, Donald Trump took credit for a record year for aviation safety in a characteristically braggadocious tweet:
Trump's commercial aviation policies in 2017 included additional screening of passengers on international flights, but weren't the driver of the ''good news,'' industry experts pointed out at the time. Instead, 2017's results were part of a ''steady and persistent decline'' in aviation fatalities since 1997, says the Aviation Safety Network, a private initiative tracking air-safety incidents, thanks to the efforts of international flight safety groups and the industry itself.
A year later, that steady and persistent decline has stopped. Two new Boeing 737 Max planes have crashed in just five months, killing nearly 350 people, and shining a spotlight on the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the US regulator that sets the standard for airline safety around the world and certifies plane design at Boeing, the world's largest manufacturer of jet planes.
The FAA insists the Boeing 737 Max is still safe to fly. But in an unusual move, dozens of nations have rejected the agency's recommendation, and are grounding flights, including the entire European Union, home of the world's other top airline regulator.
''At least temporarily, it is a vote of 'no confidence' in the [FAA],'' said Paul Hudson, the president of FlyersRights, a passenger rights organization, and a member of the FAA's Rulemaking Advisory Committee. When the Boeing 787 Dreamliner had a battery fire issue in 2013, the FAA ''grounded that aircraft for a six weeks until Boeing came up with a fix for the problem,'' Hudson points out.
''At least temporarily, it is a vote of 'no confidence' in the [FAA].''
Like many US federal agencies under Trump, the FAA isn't operating under optimal conditions to deal with a big issue like the two Boeing crashes. It hasn't had a permanent top official for 14 months, the White House pushed gutting its employees and trimming budgets for two years in a row, and the recent government shutdown delayed officials' approval of safety upgrades.
Pressure on the Trump administrationAs the world awaits the readout from Ethiopian Airlines flight 302's flight recorder, or ''black box,'' which is expected Friday, the FAA's response and the role that it played in keeping Boeing's 737s in the air are under scrutiny. After the Lion Air plane crash in October 2018, a Boeing software upgrade was expected in January, but the US's 35-day government shutdown and disagreements between the FAA and the airplane manufacturer delayed it.
Now, the FAA should ''immediately ground this plane in the United States until its safety can be assured,'' said Elizabeth Warren, the Democratic Massachusetts senator, echoing other members of Congress on March 12. Airline unions have told members they don't have to fly on the Boeing 737 if they feel unsafe. Former Department of Transportation secretary head Ray LaHood, who oversaw the 787 issues in 2013, and Jim Hall, former head of the National Transportation Safety Board, which investigates airline accidents, both say it is time to ground the plane.
Trump himself seemed to think so Tuesday (March 12), tweeting that planes had ''become too complex to fly.'' Later the same day, Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg and Trump spoke on the phone, and Muilenburg reassured Trump the aircraft was safe, the company told reporters. Muilenburg's reassurance is something that past presidents might have looked to the FAA to do.
The FAA plays such an important role in the global aviation industry, thanks in part to the fact that for decades the US aviation industry carried the most commercial passengers of any country, as World Bank data shows. Flying in and out of the US means meeting FAA specifications, and being a successful global airline, no matter where you are based, meant having US stops. Even now, US citizens make about 19% of total global passenger journeys. There's no guarantee the FAA will play the same role in the future, as most of the projected growth in passengers is coming from Asia-Pacific.
If the US permanently ''loses its reputation for aviation safety, that's a much bigger deal than this particular issue over this particular plane,'' said Hudson of FlyersRights. In a worst-case scenario, if the world were to say ''we can't trust the FAA anymore,'' airlines and manufacturers could be forced to rely on an international body like the UN to provide trusted safety certification.
The FAA under TrumpDays after Trump's January 2018 tweet taking credit for 2017 safety records, Michael Huerta, the FAA's top official announced he was stepping down. That wasn't unexpected: The FAA's top job is politically appointed, yet purposely set to a five-year term, to make sure there's overlap enough for a new president to find a replacement for the critical safety regulator.
But the Trump administration didn't have a serious contender to take Huerta's place waiting in the wings. Instead, the White House floated the idea of Trump's personal pilot since 1989, John Dunkin, to head the $17.5 billion budget, 45,000-person agency; Congress members pushed back, suggesting his lack of appropriate experience meant he'd never be confirmed.
Since then, the job has been filled on an acting basis by Trump's deputy administrator pick, Dan Elwell, a former Air Force pilot, American Airlines executive, and lobbyist for the airline industry. Because Elwell, the deputy administrator, is acting as top administrator, Carl Burleson, the Deputy Assistant Administrator for Policy, International Affairs, and Environment, is serving as the ''acting'' deputy administrator, while Burleson's former deputy is doing his old job; ditto with the Chief of Staff Tina Amereihn, who was originally head of finance. In other words, the FAA's top three positions are all held by officials in an acting capacity.
The FAA isn't alone. Under Trump, there are numerous US agencies now in a similar sort of limbo, awaiting permanent appointments for top officials and crucial deputies, from the Department of Defense (whose acting secretary is a former Boeing executive) and the Interior to the Environmental Protection Agency. Trump told reporters in January the structure gives him more ''flexibility,'' critics say it centralizes power in the Oval Office, and weakens these agencies.
We're in year three of the Trump administration. That's a long time not to have a permanent FAA chief in place.
''When you have interim or acting people for a long period of time, that puts everyone else in an interim role in that chain of command,'' James Norton, founder of consultant Play-Action Strategies, which advises companies on getting federal contracts, and a former Department of Homeland Security official. That affects how quickly things are accomplished, how thoroughly they are reviewed, and when decisions are made. ''We're in year three'' of the Trump administration, he noted. ''That's a long time not to have the FAA'' permanent management in place.
In response to questions about staffing levels and any impact the shutdown may have had on safety upgrades, the FAA sent Quartz its official statement on the Ethiopian Air crash, which said it was monitoring developments and assisting Ethiopian authorities, and referred further questions to the Department of Transportation.
Trump had tangles with the airline regulator before he took office; the FAA grounded his personal Cessna jet during the 2016 presidential campaign for flying with an expired registration and he filed a $100 million lawsuit in 2015 alleging the FAA had been told to reroute traffic over his Palm Beach, Florida club Mar-a-Lago.
As president, all of Trump's proposed budgets, including the most recent released yesterday (March 11) suggest cutting hundreds of millions from the agency's annual budget, a signal of the White House's priorities that Congress ignored. For the first two years of his presidency, the Trump White House pushed a plan to privatize air traffic control, a key FAA task, which would have eliminated about 60% of its employees. The idea lost support in Congress, and is not mentioned in the new budget.
Two days before the Ethiopian Airlines crash, Reuters reported Trump would nominate a Delta Airlines veteran for the top FAA job, but no nomination has been forthcoming. Neither the Department of Transportation, which oversees the FAA, or the White House, responded to questions.
Security Alert '' Demonstration in Meskel Square and the Oromia Region (8 March, 2019) | U.S. Embassy in Ethiopia
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 19:09
Location: Meskel Square in Addis Ababa and the Oromia Region
Event: The U.S. Embassy is aware of calls for a protest to be held on Sunday, March 10, 2019 at Meskel Square. It is unknown whether the protest has been or will be approved by Ethiopian authorities. Protests have already occurred in many parts of the Oromia region since March 6, and additional protests may materialize.
U.S. Embassy personnel are advised to avoid Meskel Square and limit movement around Addis Ababa on Sunday, March 10. U.S. Government travelers have been advised not to arrive or depart Bole International Airport on Sunday, March 10, and U.S. Embassy personnel are also temporarily prohibited from traveling to Oromia.
Actions to Take:
Monitor local media for updates.Avoid crowdsAvoid demonstrations.Be aware of your surroundings.Keep a low profile.Assistance:
U.S. Embassy Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
+251-111-306-911 or 011-130-6000 (after hours)
State Department '' Consular Affairs
888-407-4747 or 202-501-4444
Ethiopia Country Information
Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security updates
Follow us on Twitter and Facebook
By U.S. Embassy Ethiopia | 8 March, 2019 | Topics: Alert, U.S. Citizen Services | Tags: Security alert
Ethiopian Airlines crash '' a visual guide to what we know so far | World news | The Guardian
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 19:19
An Ethiopian Airlines plane crashed on Sunday near Addis Ababa, killing all 157 people on board. Here's what we know about the crash.
What do we know so far about the flight?The black box recorder has been recovered from the wreckage, which should reveal technical flight data as well as the cockpit voice recordings. Until that evidence is analysed and released, the only available data has come from tracking websites such as Flightradar24.
Flight ET302 took off from the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, at 8.38am local time (5.38am GMT) and crashed approximately six minutes later, on its way to the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, in rural land near the town of Bishoftu.
mapAccording to the airline, the captain of the plane had reported difficulties and requested permission to turn back.
Flight radar data shows that the aircraft was climbing erratically, with an unstable vertical airspeed.
altitude graphicConflicting witness reports from locals on the ground have been given to TV crews. One man told the BBC that the plane had dropped straight from the sky, with no visible flames before impact; another told CNN that he had seen smoke coming from the back of the aircraft before it crashed.
Ethiopia plane crash: what we know about the disaster so far '' videoHow does the crash compare to what we know about Lion Air Flight 610?The disaster was the second involving a Boeing 737 Max 8 in the past four months. In October, a Lion Air plane crashed into the sea off the Indonesian capital of Jakarta, killing all 189 people onboard.
The undisputed similarity is that both planes that were the same model of Boeing 737: a new iteration, the Max 8, that first flew in 2017 and had only been in service a matter of months for Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines; and in both cases, the pilots reported difficulties immediately after takeoff.
While the investigation is still continuing into the Lion Air crash, the plane showed sharp changes of altitude, which suggested the pilots may have been effectively trying to wrestle against in-flight control systems designed to prevent a stall.
However, the publicity around that crash and immediate warnings to airlines and pilots from Boeing and aviation regulators, highlighting the software changes in the 737 Max autopilot and reminding pilots of operational procedures, would appear to make it unlikely that crew would be unaware if the same issue arose.
Boeing 737 Max 8: stats and factsHow important is the 737 Max plane to Boeing?The plane has become the fastest selling in history: more than 5,000 orders placed, and more than 350 in service. At its officially listed price ($121m per plane), that amounts to more than $600bn worth of planes sold already and being manufactured, though most airlines will have bought them at a substantial discount.
Southwest Airlines has ordered more Boeing 737 Max 8 jets than any other airline...Southwest Airlines has ordered more Boeing 737 Max 8 jets than any other airline...... it has also had more of them delivered than any other airline... it has also had more of them delivered than any other airlineBoeing's 737 was already the most common plane in the sky, a short-haul workhorse. The latest iteration promised significantly greater fuel efficiency, more seats on a similar-sized plane, and a longer range '' a promise that has seen airlines all around the world clamour to buy them. Ryanair alone has signed up for 150.
What do we know of the victims?The crash killed 157 people from 35 different countries, including eight crew members. The victims included 32 Kenyan citizens, 18 from Canada, nine from Ethiopia, eight from Italy, China and the US, and seven from the UK and France.
Among them were aid workers, doctors and delegates heading to a UN environment assembly in Nairobi.
How does Ethiopian Airlines' safety record stack up?Ethiopian has been regarded as a standard bearer among African airlines, on a continent where aviation safety has lagged behind the rest of the world. Despite Ethiopian's mostly good record, a notable exemption was a crash in 2010 off Lebanon that killed 90 people and was ascribed to pilot error by investigators, although the airline disputed the findings.
But it has not had great fortune as an early adopter of Boeing planes: an electrical fault saw a 787 Dreamliner catch fire at Heathrow in 2013.
What do other carriers and regulators say?Regulators in the UK and Australia have suspended the operation of all 737 Max models in their airspace, while Singapore and Malaysia have also stopped the planes from flying into and out of their airports. China and Indonesia have grounded all their 737 Max planes, as have Oman and South Korea. Some airlines have also independently grounded their 737 Max planes.
The existence of the Boeing Uninterruptible Autopilot - FliegerFaust
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 19:16
''at least 108 Boeing airliners were in service that had been modified with QRS11 GyroChips (electronic hijack) and "something more sinister". There was no interest from any quarter. On January 1, 2007, Adam Air 574 was vaporized in Indonesia in a manner exactly like Field McConnell had relayed as a threat."
''During pendency of my warning to the FAA, ALPA, FBI, DoD and NoRAD, the following flights have been lost consistent with Field McConnell's warnings:
Adam Air 574 '' 1 January, 2007 IndonesiaKenya Airways 507 '' 5 May, 2007 KenyaColgan Air 3407 '' 12 February, 2009 Buffalo, New YorkAir France 447 '' 1 June, 2009 enroute from Rio to ParisFour other flights were "electronically tampered" with including the following flights:
British Airways 38 London HeathrowTurkish Airlines 1951 Amsterdam HollandNorthwest 188 MinneapolisNorthwest 253 Detroit"Field McConnell was born on October 2, 1949 at Harris Hospital, Fort Worth, Tarrant County, Texas in 1949 to a career United States Air Force B29 bomber pilot and aircraft commander, Glenn McConnell, and a WWII United States Army nurse.
1950 to 1959, United States Air Force dependant at MacDill AFB, Tampa Florida1955-56 1st grade, Helen Hill School, Tampa FL1956-59 grades 2-4, Tinker Elementary, MacDill AFB, Tampa FL father promoted to colonel, reassigned to Westover AFB, Massachusetts, HQ 8th Air Force1959-61 grades 5-6, South Hadley Elementary, Massachusetts1961-63 grades 7-8, South Hadley Intermediate, Massachusetts father transferred to Ramey AFB, Puerto Rico1963-66 grades 9-11, Ramey High School, Ramey AFB, Aguadilla, PR father transferred to Hickam AFB, Hawaii1966-67 grade 12, Punahou School, Honolulu Hawaii appointed to United States Naval Academy as a Presidential Alternate, reported 28 June, 19671967-1971, studied at United States Naval Academy, graduating 9 June, 1971. Commissioned 2nd Lt United States Marine Corps with guarantee of Aviation Military Operational SpecialtyJuly 1971 to February, 1972, attended USMC The Basic School, July 1971 to February, 1972, qualified as 0301, Infantry Platoon CommanderFebruary, 1972 to June, 1972 attended US Naval Aviation Indoctrination and Primary flight training, Naval Air Pensacola, FloridaJuly, 1972 to December, 1972 attended US Naval Aviation Basic Jet Training, McCain Naval Air Station, Meridian, MississippiJanuary, 1973 to June 1973, attended US Naval Aviation Advanced Jet Training, NAS Kingsville, TexasDesignated US Naval Aviator 22 June, 1973July, 1973 to January, 1974; assigned to VMA-102, VMFA-101, Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Arizona and USAF C130 Combat Crew Training at Little Rock AFB, ArkansasFebruary 1974 to October, 1974, assigned to Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadron 352, MCAS El Toro, California flying KC130FOctober 1974 to May 1977, assigned to US Navy Training Squadron 21, Chase Field Naval Air Station, Beeville Texas. Instructor pilot, TA4J teaching advanced jet training syllabus.Resigned from United States Marine Corps when recruited by North Dakota Air National Guard, Fargo ND, to fly F4D with 178th Fighter Interceptor Squadron, NDANG.1978: William Tell, World-wide fighter competitionHired by North Central Airlines on 2 November, 1978. Flew Convair 580 domesticallyNorth Central merged with Southern Airways to become Republic Airlines July, 1979. Flew DC9, MD80,B727 and CV580 domestically Republic Airlines bought by Northwest Airlines January, 1986. Flew B727, DC10 and A320 domestic and international flights.1986: William Tell, World-wide fighter competitionNorth Dakota ANG transitioned from F4 Phantom to F16 Fighting Falcon, 1990Retired from Air National Guard on 22 June, 1993 with final F16 flight on Pearl Harbor Day, 1992. Refused to serve under William Jefferson Clinton per information given by General Hunter H. Harris IV USAF who had secured my appointment to Annapolis.On December 10, 2006, Field McConnell reported the illegal modification on Boeing aircraft to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Northwest Airlines, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), NORAD and the USNA Superintendent. Shortly thereafter, Northwest Airlines, compelled by the United States Department of Justice (USDoJ), silenced Field McConnell, due to his inadvertent reopening of a safety issue closed in the June, 2006 settlement of a $615 million settlement paid by Boeing to the United States Department of Justice (USDOJ).
Field McConnell filed Civil Case 3:07-cv-24 at the District Court, District of North Dakota on the 27th of February, 2007. The case is titled 'FIELD MCCONNELL v. ALPA and BOEING'. Boeing admitted on March 3, 2007 the existence of the Boeing Uninterruptible Autopilot. To date, 9 February, 2012, Airline Pilots Association (ALPA) has suppressed this information.
Field McConnell retired March 13, 2007 to preserve his EXPERT WITNESS VALUE in US District Courts. Civil Case 3:07-cv-49 HAWKS CAFE v. GLOBAL GUARDIANS was filed on May Day, May 1, 2007 in District Court, District of North Dakota.
Field McConnell was recruited by Air Astana to fly Airbus A320 as Captain at Almaty and Astana, Kazakhstan serving there from February 6, 2008 until August 6, 2009. Captain Field McConnell flew with Muslim copilots around tall buildings. On December 13, 2008, an aircraft Captain Field McConnell was the captain of was electronically 'tampered with' having no effect on Field McConnell's performance as a highly experienced pilot.
While serving as Airbus Captain in Kazakhstan, Field McConnell filed Civil Case 1:08-1600 (RMC) (Pro Se) September, 2008, MCCONNELL v. ALPA. Civil Case 1:08-1600 (RMC) (Pro Se) was dismissed by Judge Rosemary M. Collyer in January, 2011
During pendency of my warning to the FAA, ALPA, FBI, DoD and NoRAD, the following flights have been lost consistent with Field McConnell's warnings:
Adam Air 574 '' 1 January, 2007 IndonesiaKenya Airways 507 '' 5 May, 2007 KenyaColgan Air 3407 '' 12 February, 2009 Buffalo, New YorkAir France 447 '' 1 June, 2009 enroute from Rio to ParisFour other flights were "electronically tampered" with including the following flights:
British Airways 38 London HeathrowTurkish Airlines 1951 Amsterdam HollandNorthwest 188 MinneapolisNorthwest 253 DetroitFargo Forum, called Field McConnell at home early in the after noon of September 11, 2001, the very same day of the attack on New York and the Pentagon in Washington. The reporter from the Fargo Forum talked about forty minutes, then asked if Field McConnell could be photographed for a front page story. The Fargo Forum, a Pullitzer Prize winning daily in Fargo North Dakota, sent a photographer out to Field McConnell's farm which was near Glyndon Minnesota, thirteen miles east of Fargo North Dakota.
Field McConnell still retains that front page of that newspaper; and on page A5 dated September 12, 2001, the headline read: "Our Nation Saw Evil", with a photograph of the rubble at the WTC complex, President George Bush, Osama bin Laden and Field McConnell.
This demonstrated clearly that Field McConnell was sought out as an "expert" on 9-11. The newspaper knew that Field McConnell had flown with and retired from the North Dakota Air National Guard as a Lieutenant Colonel after having flown sixteen years with them in the F4 Phantom and F16 Falcon fighters.
Sadly, Field McConnell's son is tracked and targeted by more cowards, including RADSAT, Iridium, Tomoye, and Boeing corporations, in Quebec and Chicago; and one more, McConnell International LLC. There is no relation, but Field's sister is a principal at McConnell International.
If David Hawkins and Field McConnell can solve 9-11 in five and a half years, what have the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Central Intelligence Agency and the national Security Agency been doing with tax dollars?
The US Intelligence community has been totally inerted by Tomoye in Quebec and McConnell in Washington DC. Interestingly enough, their Washington offices are within one block of each other on same street. Perhaps their cells will be on the same cellblock soon.
Field McConnell's interest has remained very high as his college classmate (USNA '71) was the Captain on American Airlines Flight 77, which was vaporized over the Atlantic forty-five minutes prior to the unmanned aerial vehicle that killed another United States Naval Academy alumni, Captain Gerald 'Fish' DeConto, whose window in Wedge One of the Pentagon the object flew into. Field McConnell felt strongly that the attack on September 11, 2001 was ...
Boeing 737 Max to receive updated control software - Business Insider
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 19:12
The Boeing 737 Max line of airliners. Boeing The Boeing 737 Max will receive updated flight-control software in the coming weeks.The announcement comes four months after the crash of Lion Air Flight 610 and two days after the crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302. Both involved effectively brand-new Boeing 737 Max 8 airliners.The update will change the way the plane's MCAS control software reacts to faulty sensor readings.Boeing expects the US Federal Aviation Administration to make the update mandatory. The Boeing 737 Max will be receiving updated flight-control software, the airplane maker announced Tuesday. The announcement comes four months after the crash of Lion Air Flight 610 and two days after the crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302. Both involved effectively brand-new Boeing 737 Max 8 airliners.
In a statement, Boeing said:
"For the past several months and in the aftermath of Lion Air Flight 610, Boeing has been developing a flight control software enhancement for the 737 MAX, designed to make an already safe aircraft even safer. This includes updates to the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS) flight control law, pilot displays, operation manuals, and crew training. The enhanced flight control law incorporates angle of attack (AOA) inputs, limits stabilizer trim commands in response to an erroneous angle of attack reading, and provides a limit to the stabilizer command in order to retain elevator authority."
The Chicago-based aviation giant said the update would be implemented across the 737 Max fleet in the coming weeks.
Read more: Boeing has $400 billion in orders on the books, 80% of them for the 737
Boeing expects the US Federal Aviation Administration to issue an Airworthiness Directive "no later than" April to mandate the updated software.
The company has not indicated it will make physical changes to the aircraft, which has been in service last spring.
At the heart of the controversy surrounding the 737 Max is MCAS, the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System. To fit the Max's larger, more fuel-efficient engines, Boeing had to redesign the way it mounts engines on the 737. This change disrupted the plane's center of gravity and caused the Max to have a tendency to tip its nose upward during flight, increasing the likelihood of a stall. MCAS is designed to automatically counteract that tendency and point the nose of the plane downward.
Initial reports from the Lion Air investigation, however, indicate that a faulty sensor reading may have triggered MCAS shortly after the flight took off. Observers fear that a similar thing may have happened in Sunday's Ethiopian Airlines flight.
More about the Boeing 737 Max 8 and the Ethiopian Airlines disaster: Seven airlines and 5 countries have grounded the Boeing 737 Max 8 after a 2nd crash involving the plane killed 157 people '-- here's who's taken action so far There's a significant difference between the Ethiopian Airlines and Lion Air plane crashes, which both involved the Boeing 737 Max 8 These are the victims of the Boeing 737 Max 8 crash in Ethiopia FAA says Boeing 737 Max 8, the plane that's crashed twice in 5 months, is still safe to fly Southwest has the largest exposure of all US airlines to Boeing's 737 Max The black box from the crashed Ethiopian Airlines flight has been found The family of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 captain speaks out after crash that killed 157 people A Georgetown University law student who reportedly expressed a fear of flying is among the 157 dead in the Ethiopian Airlines crash An Ethiopian Airlines passenger said he missed the crashed flight by 2 minutes: 'I'm grateful to be alive'People of 35 different nationalities were killed in the Ethiopian Airlines crash, including 8 Americans Get the latest Boeing stock price here.
More: BITranspo BISelect Boeing Boeing 737 Max Popular Jeff Bezos has said that Amazon has had failures worth billions of dollars '-- here are some of the biggest ones Popular A woman who studied 600 millionaires discovered that most of the superrich have surprisingly affordable homes. Here's what some of those look like. Popular Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner were repeatedly rejected when they tried to fly on Air Force planes, so they found a workaround Popular Actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin among dozens charged by FBI with participating in a scheme to get students into elite colleges Popular 'I don't want Albert Einstein to be my pilot': Trump says airplanes are becoming 'too complex to fly' as the UK, China, and other nations ground the Boeing 737 Max 8
Boeing to Upgrade Software Across 737 MAX Fleet After Deadly Ethiopia Crash - Sputnik International
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 19:11
US04:08 12.03.2019(updated 09:33 12.03.2019) Get short URL
According to a company statement, cited by Reuters, the software enhancement includes updates to Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS) flight control law, pilot displays, operation manuals, and crew training.
"Boeing has been working closely with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on development, planning and certification of the software enhancement, and it will be deployed across the 737 MAX fleet in the coming weeks ['...] The FAA says it anticipates mandating this software enhancement with an Airworthiness Directive (AD) no later than April. We have worked with the FAA in development of this software enhancement", the statement said.
The news comes after a Nairobi-bound Boeing 737 Max 8, operated by Ethiopian Airlines, crashed minutes after take-off from Addis Ababa on Sunday. All 157 people from over 30 countries who were on board the Boeing were killed. The cause of the accident is yet unknown. According to the airline, the plane was well-maintained.
The latest crash in Ethiopia is the second fatal incident involving the narrow-body aircraft in less than five months. In late October 2018, another Boeing 737 MAX 8, operated by Indonesia's Lion Air, plunged into the Java Sea shortly after take-off, claiming the lives of 189 people.
READ MORE: Boeing Confident in 737 MAX Safety After Ethiopia Deadly Crash '-- CEO Statement
While external reports have compared Sunday's accident in Ethiopia to a similar crash of a Boeing 737 Max 8 in Indonesia in October, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said that it has not been provided with data to draw any conclusions or take any actions.
However, the FAA said in a recent statement that US aviation authorities would order Boeing to make changes to a flight correction system on its 737 Max 8 aircraft, having certified the plane's airworthiness following two deadly crashes in recent months.
"The FAA anticipates mandating these design changes ['...] no later than April 2019", the statement said Monday. The US aviation agency will take immediate action if it identifies any issues with the Boeing 737 Max that affect flight safety, it added.
Following the deadly crash, Ethiopian Airlines announced that it had decided to suspend the operation of its Boeing 737 MAX 8 airplanes as a precaution, with Cayman Airways, Chinese and Indonesian aviation authorities following suit. India announced a safety review, while Vietnam has said that it will not grant licenses for Boeing 737 MAX aircraft until an investigation into the ET 302 crash is completed.
READ MORE: Ethiopian Airlines Boeing's Black Box Recovered at Crash Site '-- Reports
(C) Sputnik / Maksim Blinov
US Senator Dianne Feinstein said in a letter on Monday to FAA Acting Administrator Daniel Elwell that the body should ground all Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft operating in the United States.
"Until the cause of the crash is known and it's clear that similar risks aren't present in the domestic fleet, I believe all Boeing 737 Max 8 series aircraft operating in the United States should be temporarily grounded", Feinstein said in the letter on Monday.
Remotely Crashing Planes and Controlling Patents '' Abel Danger
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 19:09
Source: Americans for Innovations
Thursday, January 11, 2018
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; also see for more detail on the
uninterruptable autopilot ) 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 handled the
QRS-11 patent family. Her mentor, managing partner J. Joseph Giroiri, was on the board of the assignee of the patents ''
BEI Technologies, Inc. Hillary Clinton's Rose Law Firm
[AD note: Hillary Clinton was not a patent lawyer, however, she was an intellectual property lawyer at the Rose Law firm which is the third oldest law firm in the United States. How can lawyers assist Abel Danger to strip Serco '' formerly RCA GB 1929, a radio patent monopoly company '' out of the USPTO before Hillary Clinton builds the next death-pool patent thicket around the technology of a variable yield atomic bomb? Or how can a petition get going among patent and IP law associates to have the operations of the USPTO taken away from Serco and returned to the United States government?]
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 , Walker's system can crash planes remotely 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. Despite ill health, Larry carries on the struggle to bring the Clintons to justice.
Bookmark: #ieee-patent-fraud |
Most computer engineers have no idea how the IEEE 802.3 data transmission Ethernet standard was developed (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers). We have just discovered that it was shoved down our throats by Deep State shadow government forces intent on controlling the Internet as a global spy grid and corporatist profit machine.
Richard C. Walker a.k.a Rick Walker was a stooge for Agilent Technologies who was evidently tapped by the Highlands Group to seize control of technology standards needed for the takeover. This post contains hard, indictable evidence that proves the identities of the corporatists involved with HP/Agilent, including 3Com, Qualcomm, Broadcom, Cisco, IBM, Sun, Intel, NTT (Japan Telephone), Cielo, Quake, nSerial, Nortel, World Wide Packets. See
Jul. 10, 2000 IEEE meeting slides where Walker's pushes standards proposed on
Mar. 06, 2000 '--the same day he filed for a patent (became
U.S. Pat. No. 6,718,491 ) on the same slides.
Mindspring engineer Roy Bynum complained that Walker was railroading the standard. Of course, after filing his patent, Walker had a vested interest in having it become the IEEE standard for data transmission. It did, to this day.
Patents last for 20 years from the time they are filed. Walker assigned it to HP/Agilent Technologies. Then inexplicably, on Jun. 24, 2013, the Patent Office allowed an almost identical patent U.S. Pat. No. 9,451,057 on the 802.3 Ethernet standard by a subsidiary of Marvell International, Ltd. thru inventor Brett A. McClellan , a Bahamian corporation with offices in Colorado.The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) overrode the Examiner Eric A. Myers (Art Unit 2474) who had ruled that Marvell's filing was doubly unpatenable as being essentially a copy of Walker's earlier dubious Ethernet patents. Walker filed eleven (11) patents assigned to Hewlett-Packard and fourteen (14) assigned to Agilent Technologies, Inc. The PTAB overruled Examiner Myers and awarded it to McClellan/Marvell anyway , void of substantive reasons, the PTAB (secret three-judge internal patent court) magically accepted ALL of Marvell's previously rejected novelty arguments. Therefore, Marvell's value appears to be fraudulent, yet they claim control of the 802.3 Ethernet standard driving all Internet data transmission. This evident corruption in the U.S. Patent Office shows it has become nothing but a rubber stamp for corporatists, and not a protector of American inventors.
Meet Big Brother
(JAN. 11, 2017)'--What AFI and American Intelligence Media (AIM) 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.
The patent actually says that 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.
Please go to Americans for Innovations to read the entire article.________
SERCO GROUP PLC: List of Subsidiaries AND Shareholders! [Note representatives of Serco' s private-equity groups, investment banker N M Rothschild (Wilbur Ross?) and shareholders, including the British and Saudi governments, JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs and the TIAA pension fund, met in a junket room on the 47th Floor of North Tower (WTC1) on 9/11!] >>
This is The Chip You Should Know About
(George W. Bush Administration)
2002 '' BXA changes to BIS In April 2002, less than one year after the 9.11 terrorists attack which shook the world, the Bureau of Export Administration (BXA) of the Commerce Department announced that it had changed its name to the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS). The change was made to reflect the breadth of the bureau's renewed activities in the sphere of national, homeland, economic and cyber security.
2006 '' Boeing is charged with violations of AECA/ITAR
In April, 2006, Boeing paid a $15 million fine for violations of AECA and ITAR. Between 2000 and 2003, according to the Charging Letter of the State Department, Boeing shipped overseas without license 94 commercial jets with the BEI QRS-11 quarts rate sensors, or gyro-chips, embedded in the flight boxes, including 19 to China. In July 1993 the Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC) of the State Department issued a Commodity Jurisdiction (CJ) determination to BEI Technology Inc., the manufacturer of the device, ruling that the QRS-11 is a defense article controlled under the ITAR, being used in the guidance system of the Maverick missile.
News update on Hillary Clinton. The FBI now needs to be rebuilt from the ground up'...
Joe diGenova '' Brazen Plot to Frame Trump, 1990
You Will Be Completely Controlled '-- You Are Wetware '-- Implanted Devices and Mind Control Hijack You>>
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Lion Air Said to Plan Airbus Order Switch After Boeing 737 Crash
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 15:06
Lion Air Said to Plan Airbus Order Switch After Boeing 737 Crash
(Bloomberg) -- Indonesia's Lion Air plans to drop a $22 billion order for Boeing Co. 737 Max jetliners and switch to rival aircraft from Airbus SE as a rift between the companies widens following this week's crash in Ethiopia, a person with knowledge of the proposal said.
Lion Air was already looking at scrapping the Boeing deal after one of its own Max planes came down on Oct. 29, killing 189 people, and the African tragedy has made co-founder Rusdi Kirana more determined to cancel the contract, according to the person, who asked not to be named as the plans are private.
The move provides the first evidence of Boeing's order book being hurt following Sunday's crash, in which 157 people died when an Ethiopian Airlines 737 plunged to the ground six minutes after takeoff. The incident bore similarities to the Lion Air tragedy, and countries including China, Australia and Singapore, as well as Ethiopia and Indonesia, have banned the aircraft.
Lion Air is now evaluating jets from Airbus's A320 family, the European company's competitor to the 737 in the single-aisle market, with the focus on the biggest A321neo variant, the person said.
While Lion Air declined to comment on the future of its 200-plane Max order, Daniel Putut, a director at the company, said in Jakarta on Tuesday that it had suspended delivery of four jets due this year. A spokeswoman for Chicago-based Boeing declined to comment.
Relations between Lion Air and Boeing deteriorated last year after the U.S. company pointed to maintenance issues and pilot error as the underlying causes for the loss of flight JT610 in the Java Sea, even though preliminary investigations had found that the 737 came down after a computerized system took control following a sensor malfunction.
Anger over the planemaker's comments led Kirana to say in December that he planned to cancel Lion Air's order, the third-biggest for the upgraded model.
Two Short, Erratic Flights End in Tragedy: Could They Be Linked?
The largest Indonesian carrier by domestic market share has already refused to take delivery of a 737 Max jet due this month, said the person. It informed Boeing of the decision in February, they said.
Lion Air spokesman Danang Prihantoro said the company won't comment further on delivery plans beyond this year and will provide updates on new developments when appropriate.
Losing the deal with Lion Air, which has 10 remaining 737 Max planes in its fleet plus three in Thailand, including the first one to enter commercial service, would come as a blow to Boeing, adding to a headache from the growing crisis around plane groundings.
Shares of the U.S. planemaker fell as much as 13 percent on Monday, the most since the 9/11 terrorist attacks, as investors assessed the damage to future prospects of the company's best-selling aircraft family.
Since the Lion Air crash, Boeing has emphasized the Max's safety and defended the anti-stall Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System that pushed the Lion Air plane's nose down a dozen of times before it crashed.
Pressure on the company ramped up further Tuesday as Singapore and Australia moved to block the plane from their airspace, with Singaporean authorities saying they need to gather more information on the ''safety risk'' associated with the model.
What Is the Boeing 737 Max and Which Airlines Fly It?: QuickTake
--With assistance from Fathiya Dahrul.
To contact Bloomberg News staff for this story: Anurag Kotoky in New Delhi at;Benjamin Katz in London at
To contact the editors responsible for this story: Young-Sam Cho at, ;Anthony Palazzo at, Christopher Jasper, Benedikt Kammel
For more articles like this, please visit us at
(C)2019 Bloomberg L.P.
State Dept def of anti-semitism.pdf
Sun, 10 Mar 2019 23:07
''Anti-Semitism is a certain perception of Jews\f which may be e\bpressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physi\wcal manifestations\w of anti-Semitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals a\wnd/or their property\f toward Jewish community ins\wtitutions and religious facilities\w.''WORKING DEFINITION\b of ANTI-SEMITISM \b b\f the E\bropean Monitoring Center on Racism and XenophobiaCONTEMPORARY EXAMPLES Of ANTI-SEMITISM'– '– Calling for, aiding, or justi\efying the \filling o\er harming of Jews \boften in the name of a radic\eal ideology or an e\extremist view of religion). '– '– Ma\fing mendacious, d\eehumanizing, demoni\ezing, or stereotypical allegations about J\eews as such or the po\ewer of Jews as a collective'-- especially but not ex\eclusively, the myth about a \eworld Jewish conspiracy or of Jews controlling the media, ec\eonomy, government or other societal inst\eitutions.'– '– Accusing Jews as a people of bein\eg responsible for real or imagined wrongdoing committed \eby a single Jewish person or group, the state of Israel, or even for acts committ\eed by non-Jews.'– '– Accusing the Jews as a people, or Israel as a state, o\ef inventing or exaggerating the Holocaust.'– '– Accusing Jewish citizens of being more loyal to Israel, or to the al\eleged priorities of Jews worldwide, than t\eo the interest of their own nations.U N I T E D S T A T E S D E P A R T M E N T O F S T A T E6/8/10
WhAT IS ANTI-SEMITISM RELATI\fE TO ISRAEL?EXAMPLES of the wa\nys in whi\fh anti-Semitism manifests it\nself with \bega\bd to the state of Is\bael, taking into a\n\f\fount the ove\ball \fontext \fould in\fl\nude:DEMONIZE ISRAEL:'– '– Using the symbols an\ed images associated\e with classic anti-\eSemitism to characterize Israel or Israelis'– '– Drawing comparisons o\ef contemporary Israeli policy to tha\et of the Nazis'– '– Blaming Israel for all inter\e-religious or politica\el tensionsDOUBLE STANDARD FOR ISRAEL:\n'– '– Applying double stand\eards by requiring of it a be\ehavior not expected o\er demanded of any oth\eer democratic natio\en'– '– Multilateral organiz\eations focusing on\e Israel only for peace \eor human rights investigationsDELEGITIMIZE ISRAE\nL:'– '– Denying the Jewish people their righ\et to self-determinat\eion, and denying Israel the right to \eexistHowever, criticism of Israel similar to tha\dt leveled a\fainst any oth\der country cannot \be re\farded as anti-Semitic.U N I T E D S T A T E S D E P A R T M E N T O F S T A T E6/8/10
DEMANDS: Westlands Sit-In 50 Years of Shame '-- The Phoenix
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 13:05
On the morning of Mon. Mar. 11, the Diaspora Coalition entered Westlands for a 24-hour occupation:
The following is a full re-print of their demands.
''''Sarah Lawrence is and must be a community that welcomes and nurtures people of all races. The college rejects all forms of racism.'' '-- Memo, dated March 1, signed by the administration.
We students of color do not believe this statement to be true'... the college community has failed to meet the liberal principles it professes. If we students of color are truly part of this community, if healing is ever to take place, there must be action. - Concerned Students of Color, 1989
We, the Diaspora Coalition, are a group of students who can speak to the injustices imposed on people of color by this institution on a daily basis. The Diaspora Coalition was established this fall in order to address the pain of marginalized students as well as to advise the administration on how to best address this pain. Each of us has seen this administration repeatedly diminish the hard work of student activists who merely want a quality education and the personalized curriculum that SLC promises. We extend solidarity to all people of color in the Sarah Lawrence Community, including international students, graduate students, faculty, and staff.
In spring of 2018, Inaugural President Cristle Collins Judd held a meeting with students of color in Common Ground where we implored she respond to the demands of #BlackoutSLC2015. Our inquiries were evaded and our time wasted. This school year, we are losing our Chief Diversity Officer, Director of Diversity and Campus Engagement, and Assistant Director of Diversity and Campus Engagement. We blame the administration's lack of tangible commitment to diversity for these losses. There has been no word from the administration on restoring the department.
On March 11, 2019, the Diaspora Coalition, along with our allied peers, will occupy Westlands, make calls to the board, and present demands that describe not only our ideal vision for the school but also what we see as the only acceptable terms by which Sarah Lawrence can remain for the students and against hate. If the College does not accept these demands, it will no longer be hailed as a progressive institution but instead remembered for its inability to truly embody its self-proclaimed progressive ideology and support all students against an international rising tide of white supremacy and fascism. Sarah Lawrence was not founded on racial or economic equality and has not implemented sufficient strategies to dismantle systematic oppression to be sustainable or safe for marginalized people in an increasingly dangerous political climate. Low-income students should not have to question if they belong at this institution. We have worked tirelessly to make our voices heard and demands met because we believe in a Sarah Lawrence that can be for the people, by the people.
The Diaspora Coalition and our allies fully intend to have a peaceful demonstration that does not result in any damage to SLC property.
Sarah Lawrence must commit to actualizing the value that housing is a human right.
The College must provide winter housing to students at no charge. This housing must include a communal kitchen with dry goods from the food pantry available for all students.
In the extreme case that housing cannot be provided to students during break due to housing probation, the school must provide a list of local low-cost, free, and/or accessible housing options for students.
The College will designate housing with a minimum capacity for thirty students of color that is not contingent on the students expending any work or labor for the college. This housing option will be permanent and increase in space and size based on interest.
All campus laundry rooms are to supply laundry detergent and softener on a consistent basis for all students, faculty and staff.
Sarah Lawrence must commit to actualizing the value that no student go hungry.
The College must commit to devising a food plan where every student has access to, at minimum, two meals a day, including weekends, school breaks, and days when the college is closed due to weather. When dining options are closed on campus, the College must provide free meals for students staying on campus, including vegetarian, gluten-free, vegan, halal, and kosher options.
A commitment that no student goes hungry includes graduate students and students that live off-campus. The College will design meal plans for graduate and off-campus students based on need.
The College must ensure that students can share and transfer meal swipes and/or use multiple within the same dining period. It is unacceptable that there are students with leftover swipes at the end of the semester when other students are going hungry because they run out of meal options.
The College will support the food sharing place and institutionalize it as a food pantry.
The Food Pantry will get a permanent location in the Barbara Walters Campus Center to be opened in the Fall of 2019.
Sarah Lawrence's Food Pantry will join the College and University Food Bank Alliance (CUFBA) by the Spring of 2020.
The College will provide enough food for three hundred students per semester along with continuing to accept donations.
The Food Pantry will expand its hours to eight hours and four days a week.
The College will include students currently organizing around food security in the discussions for these developments.
Kosher/Halal Kitchen
Jewish students at Sarah Lawrence asked for the construction of a kosher kitchen as early as 1978. The College has yet to construct one. With the addition of another dining space in the Barbara Walters Campus Center, as well as the forthcoming vacancy of the Pub, this is an opportune moment for the college to make good on its commitment to diversity and inclusion by guaranteeing that Muslim and Jewish students may observe the dietary practices of their faiths.
We demand the College appoint a designated staff member in the Office of Student Affairs as the administrative liaison for first-generation resources. This role should include, but not be limited to: advising the First Generation Student Union, leading orientation programs, conducting semesterly check-ins, organizing trips, answering questions, and providing information for families.
We demand an increase in transparency in the office of the Dean of Studies, including how to receive a book stipend. We demand that the fund for books and the internship travel stipend be increased.
We demand the College further the accessibility of the college's website for our diverse campus community by creating language-friendly resources on our digital platforms.
We demand the College provide accessible information for GED, community college transfer applicants, and other non-traditional student information on the official college website.
We demand the College provide free storage to low-income and international students during the summer session between academic calendar years.
We demand the College actualize the value that healthcare is a human right by providing free health insurance to students with demonstrated financial need.
In addition to the expansion of the food pantry, we demand the College implement a 24/7 space in the Barbara Walters Center focused on providing food and necessities including pads, tampons, and detergent. Students should be able to obtain these items using with their meal plan or meal money.
We demand a mandatory first-year orientation session about intellectual elitism and classism.
We demand the removal of tuition insurance and other costs that prevent students from caring for urgent needs including their mental health and families.
We demand international students be included in the provisions stipulated above.
We demand the College give a mandatory information session detailing the EAL/ESL resources available and how they might be accessed by students during international student pre-orientation, as well as once at the beginning of every semester. The information provided must contain a list of available tutors, their offices, and contact information. Faculty must also be given this information to disseminate to students in need.
We demand the College provide free storage to international students as part of the College's commitment to student welfare. The College must host information sessions every spring semester detailing low-cost storage options and transport available to students who prefer an off-campus alternative.
While the College provides OPT and CPT training for international students, it would also be beneficial for international students to receive instruction on the American tax system. There must be mandatory information sessions for international students on how to file their taxes at the beginning of every spring semester with particular emphasis on graduating seniors. Counselling must also be made available to students who require further help.
To embody its professed commitment to diverse and inclusive excellence, we demand that Sarah Lawrence College be made accessible to low-income and first-generation students from the Global South. The College will broaden its admissions global recruitment efforts to include developing countries in the Global South. The College will send recruitment teams to countries in Latin America, the Middle East, Eastern Europe, Central and Southeast Asia, the Pacific Islands, and Africa.
We demand the College meet the demonstrated need of low-income international students by expanding the funds for the International Scholarship.
The F-1 visa does not allow for international students to secure employment off-campus. International students are also ineligible for work-study. Student employment must accommodate and prioritize international students when considering job applications at the beginning of the year.
Diasporic Studies
Students of color should not be forced to resort to racist white professors in order to have access to their own history. It is crucial that the College offer courses taught about people of color by people of color so that students may engage in and produce meaningful work that represents them authentically.
We demand there be new tenured faculty of color '' at least two in African diasporic studies, one in Asian-American studies, one in Latinx diasporic studies, and one in indigenous/native peoples studies.
We demand there be at least three more courses offered in African diasporic studies taught by Black professors.
We demand that the College offer classes that embody intersectionality, as defined by Kimberl(C) Williams Crenshaw, and address the racial diversity of the LGBTQ+ community instead of centering whiteness.
The aforementioned classes must be taught by professors who are a part of the culture they are teaching about.
Reject Funding or Involvement from the Charles Koch Foundation and Koch-Affiliated Organizations
From 2010-2017, Sarah Lawrence accepted $89,500 from the Charles Koch Charitable Foundation. Professor Sam Abrams is an alumnus of the Institute for Humane Studies (IHS) at George Mason University (GMU), of which Charles Koch has served as chairman of the board for almost four decades. The IHS is linked to the League of the South, a neo-Confederate hate group that proudly ''dared go to Charlottesville in August 2017'' for the infamous white supremacist demonstration that resulted in the murder of 32-year-old anti-racist protester Heather Heyer. With this company, it is unsurprising that the Koch brothers wield their corporate influence to fight against free speech and progress, as documented by activists including the group Transparent GMU and news publications including The New York Times and The Washington Post . The fact that Sarah Lawrence utilizes money from the Charles Koch Foundation, at best, demonstrates a passive condoning of the violent ideology of the Koch brothers and their efforts to maintain the institutionalization of oppression against marginalized people. Accepting such money completely violates SLC's ''progressive'' values and displays a gross indifference towards the suffering of marginalized students and faculty. Sarah Lawrence must confront how the presence of Sam Abrams, an anti-queer, misogynist, and racist who actively targets queer people, women, and people of color and is an alumnus of an institute with direct ties to a neo-Confederate hate group, affects the safety and wellbeing of marginalized students. Additionally, Sarah Lawrence will forfeit donations and interactions from the Charles Koch Foundation and never hire alumni from the League of the South-aligned Institute for Human Studies in the future.
Professor Samuel Abrams and Defending Progressive Education
On October 16, 2018, politics professor Samuel Abrams published an op-ed entitled ''Think Professors Are Liberal? Try School Administrators'' in The New York Times . The article revealed the anti-Blackness, anti-LGBTQ+, and anti-woman bigotry of Abrams. The article specifically targeted programs such as the Our Liberation Summit, which Abrams did not attend, facilitated by the Office of Diversity and Campus Engagement. The Sarah Lawrence community deserves an administration that strives for an inclusive education that reflects the diversity of our community. Abrams' derision of the Black Lives Matter, queer liberation, and women's rights movements displays not only ignorance but outright hostility towards the essential efforts to dismantle white supremacy and other systems of oppression. This threatens the safety and wellbeing of marginalized people within the Sarah Lawrence community by demonstrating that our lives and identities are viewed as ''opinions'' that we can have a ''difference in dialogue'' about, as if we haven't been forced to debate our very existences for our entire lives. We demand that Samuel Abrams' position at the College be put up to tenure review to a panel of the Diaspora Coalition and at least three faculty members of color. In addition, the College must issue a statement condemning the harm that Abrams has caused to the college community, specifically queer, Black, and female students, whilst apologizing for its refusal to protect marginalized students wounded by his op-ed and the ignorant dialogue that followed. Abrams must issue a public apology to the broader SLC community and cease to target Black people, queer people, and women.
The Rehiring of Title IX and Diversity Officers
We demand the positions of Dean of Equity and Inclusion, Director of the Office of Diversity and Campus Engagement, and Assistant Director of the Office of Diversity and Campus Engagement will be filled by three separate people of color by the beginning of the fall 2019 semester. A panel of students of color will be formed and will be instrumental in deciding who fills these positions.
Mental Health Support for Students of Color
We demand the College provide and support at least:
One new Black therapist
One new Asian therapist
One new Latinx therapist
We demand all students have access to unlimited therapy sessions through Health and Wellness.
We demand the College provide transportation to students with weekly therapy in the Westchester area.
We demand the College facilitate annual diversity training during the first two weeks of the fall semester mandatory for faculty and first-year students and available to all students and faculty. The training will be crafted in a democratic manner with the input of students and staff from the Diaspora Coalition.
Scholarships for Students of Color
We demand the College fund a new scholarship program initiative specifically for students of color, with priority given to low-income and first-generation students. This program initiative must include:
An endowed scholarship fund, ensuring that the funding will last for generations of students to come. This funding should come from both institutional monies and donor giving.
The Office of Advancement and the Office of the President must commit to fundraising for this endowment immediately by establishing at least $30,000 by the beginning of the next academic year (fall 2019). Additionally, the students of color scholarship must be listed as a top priority for the next capital campaign. The scholarship shall be awarded to first years and stay at the same or increased amount every year until the graduation of the selected students.
In addition to the scholarship, this program initiative must provide the selected students the commitment of community. This shall include mentorship through pairing with an upperclassman and a staff member from the Office of Diversity and Campus Engagement.
This program should:
House the students together in their first year
Offer a stipend of at least $500 per semester for each student
Provide a free standard meal plan
Plan outings and workshops throughout the academic year
The College must provide full transparency to incoming students looking for information on scholarships. There is no information on the website on the process of scholarship selection nor how one can be considered. The College must add more information on the scholarship process by the next academic semester.
The College must fully meet all demonstrated financial need of accepted students of color. Students of color consistently and overwhelmingly experience financial distress and fail to be accommodated by the Office of Financial Aid and the Office of Student Accounts. This is part of the reason why the college's retention rate for students of color is so low. Both offices should be obligated to provide scholarship resources for those in need of outside help.
The College must guarantee work-study for all students awarded work-study funds for the year. As the funds cannot be accessed without a campus job, it is the duty of the College to provide students the opportunity to earn the money listed on their financial aid package.
Permanent Funding for Identity Groups
The College will provide a set budget of at least $500 per semester to:
Black student unions
Asian student unions
Latinx student unions
Indigenous student unions
LGBTQ+ student unions, including QPOC
Disabled student unions
First-generation college student unions
International student unions
The student body will in no way pay for these funds.
Identity groups will be allowed to request for senate funding in addition to this set budget.
We demand indigenous land acknowledgement at all orientation and commencement ceremonies in addition to a permanent land acknowledgement page on both MySLC and the Sarah Lawrence website. These pages must also include a list of resources for local tribes.
We demand that the following administrators from the College attend the student-facilitated talk-back on March 13, 2019 at 5:30pm in Miller Lecture Hall regarding this document:
President: Cristle Collins Judd
Vice President of Administration: Thomas Blum
Vice President for Finance and Operations: Stephen Schafer
Vice President for Advancement and External Affairs: Patty Goldman
Chair of the Board of Trustees: Mark P. Goodman '83
Dean of Equity and Inclusion: Al Green
Dean of Students: Danny Trujillo
Dean of Studies: Beverly Fox
Dean of Student Affairs: Paige Crandall
Dean of Enrollment: Kevin McKenna
Provost and Dean of Faculty: Kanwal Singh
Associate Vice President for Advancement and Principal Gifts: Ellen Reynolds
Associate Dean of Studies: Polly Waldman
Assistant Dean of Studies/Director of International Admission and Advising: Shirley Be
Director of Financial Aid: Nick Salinas
Director of Admission: Jennifer Gayles
Director of Student Involvement and Leadership: Joshua Luce
Director of Residence Life: Myra McPhee
Director of Human Resources: Danielle Coscia
Director of Donor Relations and Advancement Communications: Dorothee Ahrens
Senior Director of Development: Abigail Feder Kane
Senior Financial Aid Counselor and Coordinator of Student Employment: Catherine Douglas
All active department heads
Assistant Director of Financial Aid: Roberta Daskin
Assistant Director of Admission: Seth Katz
Assistant Director of Student Involvement and Leadership: Valerie Romanello
Assistant Vice President for Campus Operations and Facilities: Maureen Gallagher
Assistant Director of Residence Life: Erica Monnin
All active members of Advisory Committee
All active members of Committee on Diversity
All Admissions Counselors
We demand President Cristle Collins Judd release a public statement by March 30, 2019, the end of spring break, responding to the demands.
We demand the College release a formal annotated response to our demands that will be presented to students in a face-to-face meeting no later than April 5, 2019, the Friday following our return from spring break.
The College's work-study employers will respect students' right to protest during the week of the sit-in and in the future.
The institution will not use the threat of expulsion, removal of positions held in student government, or any other forms of punishment in retaliation to civil disobedience.
We, the Diaspora Coalition and our allies, demand that students not be penalized for participating in sit-in commencing on Monday, March 11, 2019. We expect faculty to understand that student activists attending the sit-in may not be able to attend class. We ask faculty to support the student activism happening this week, which includes the sit in, distribution of demands, and a talk-back taking place on Wednesday, March 13th at 5:30pm in Titsworth Marjorie Miller Leff Lecture Hall. It is our hope that faculty and staff value our voices outside of the classroom and support students' right to protest without repercussion.
We invite and expect our administration, faculty, and student body to stand in solidarity with #SLC50sitin.
The following administrators will sign this document agreeing to attend the talk back on March 13th, the meeting on April 5th, and see that further negotiations are scheduled until all the demands have been processed to their fullest extent.
President: Cristle Collins Judd
Vice President of Administration: Thomas Blum
Dean of Students: Danny Trujillo
Dean of Studies: Beverly Fox
Dean of Student Affairs: Paige Crandall
Dean of Enrollment: Kevin McKenna
Provost and Dean of Faculty: Kanwal Singh
The Purge
Facebook backtracks after removing Warren ads calling for Facebook breakup - POLITICO
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 09:14
The ads, which included a video, directed users to a petition on Elizabeth Warren's campaign website urging them ''to support our plan to break up these big tech companies.'' | Drew Angerer/Getty Images
Facebook removed several ads placed by Sen. Elizabeth Warren's presidential campaign that called for the breakup of Facebook and other tech giants.
But the social network later reversed course after POLITICO reported on the takedown, with the company saying it wanted to allow for "robust debate."
Story Continued Below
The ads, which had identical images and text, touted Warren's recently announced plan to unwind "anti-competitive" tech mergers, including Facebook's acquisition of WhatsApp and Instagram.
''Three companies have vast power over our economy and our democracy. Facebook, Amazon, and Google," read the ads, which Warren's campaign had placed Friday. "We all use them. But in their rise to power, they've bulldozed competition, used our private information for profit, and tilted the playing field in their favor.''
A message on the three ads said: ''This ad was taken down because it goes against Facebook's advertising policies.''
A Facebook spokesperson confirmed the ads had been taken down but said the company is in the process of restoring them.
''We removed the ads because they violated our policies against use of our corporate logo," the spokesperson said. "In the interest of allowing robust debate, we are restoring the ads.''
Warren swiped at Facebook over the removal, citing it as evidence the company has grown too powerful.
"Curious why I think FB has too much power? Let's start with their ability to shut down a debate over whether FB has too much power," she tweeted. "Thanks for restoring my posts. But I want a social media marketplace that isn't dominated by a single censor."
More than a dozen other Facebook ads from Warren about her tech proposal were not affected.
The Massachusetts Democrat has staked out an aggressive stance toward Silicon Valley's biggest companies, going further than many of the other Democratic 2020 candidates.
The affected ads, which included a video, directed users to a petition on Warren's campaign website urging them ''to support our plan to break up these big tech companies.''
The ads were limited in size and reach, with each costing under $100, according to disclosure details listed online.
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Robert Reich: Elizabeth Warren Is Right About Big Tech
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 14:43
Presidential hopeful Senator Elizabeth Warren announced Friday she wants to bust up giants like Facebook, Google, and Amazon.
America's first Gilded Age began in the late nineteenth century with a raft of innovations '' railroads, steel production, oil extraction '' but culminated in mammoth trusts run by ''robber barons'' like JP Morgan, John D. Rockefeller, and William H.(''the public be damned'') Vanderbilt.
The answer then was to bust up the railroad, oil, and steel monopolies.
We're now in a second Gilded Age '' ushered in by semiconductors, software and the internet '' which has spawned a handful of hi-tech behemoths and a new set of barons like Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg, Amazon's Jeff Bezos, and Google's Sergey Brin and Larry Page.
The answer now is the same: Bust up the monopolies.
The current move is bipartisan. At a Senate hearing I testified at last week, arch-conservative Republican Josh Hawley asked me, rhetorically, ''Is there really any wonder that there is increased pressure for antitrust enforcement activity, for privacy activity when these companies behave in the way that they do?''
Hawley added, ''Every day brings some creepy new revelation about these companies' behaviors. Of course the public is going to want there to be action to defend their rights. It's only natural.''
Natural indeed. Nearly 90 percent of all internet searches now go through Google. Facebook and Google together account for 58 percent of all digital ads (where most ad money goes these days).
They're also the first stops for many Americans seeking news (93 percent of Americans receive news online). Amazon is now the first stop for a third of all American consumers seeking to buy anything.
With such size comes the power to stifle innovation. Amazon won't let any business that sells through it to sell any item at a lower price anywhere else. It's even using its control over book sales to give books published by Amazon priority over rival publishers.
Google uses the world's most widely used search engine to promote its own services and Google-generated content over those of competitors, like Yelp. Facebook's purchases of WhatsApp and Instagram killed off two potential rivals.
Contrary to the conventional view of America as a hotbed of entrepreneurship, the rate new job-creating businesses have formed in the United States has been halved since 2004, according to the Census Bureau. Part of the reason: gargantuan entry barriers put up by Big Tech.
Such size also confers political power to get whatever these companies and their top executives want.
Amazon '' the richest corporation in America '' paid nothing in federal taxes last year. Meanwhile, it's holding an auction to extort billions from states and cities eager to have its second headquarters.
It also forced Seattle, it's home headquarters, to back down on a plan to tax big corporations like itself to pay for homeless shelters for a growing population that can't afford the sky-high rents caused in part by Amazon.
Facebook withheld evidence of Russian activity on its platform far longer than previously disclosed. When the news came to light, it employed a political opposition research firm to discredit critics.
Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg, who holds the world's speed record for falling from one of the most admired to the most reviled people on the planet, just unveiled a plan to ''encrypt'' personal information from all his platforms.
The new plan is likely to give Facebook even more comprehensive data about everyone. If you believe it will better guard privacy, you don't remember Zuckerberg's last seven promises to protect privacy.
Google forced the New America Foundation, an influential think tank it helped fund, to fire researchers who were urging antitrust officials to take on Google.
And it's been quietly financed hundreds of university professors to write research papers justifying Google's market dominance.
What to do? Some argue the tech mammoths should be regulated like utilities or common carriers, but this would put government into the impossible position of policing content and overseeing new products and services.
A better alternative is to break them up. That way, information would be distributed through a large number of independent channels without a centralized platform giving all content apparent legitimacy and extraordinary reach. And more startups could flourish.
Like the robber barons of the first Gilded Age, those of the second have amassed fortunes because of their monopolies '' fortunes that give them unparalleled leverage over politicians and the economy.
The combined wealth of Zuckerberg ($62.3 billion), Bezos ($131 billion), Brin ($49.8 billion) and Page ($50.8 billion) is larger than the combined wealth of the bottom half of the American population.
A wealth tax (also proposed by Warren) would help.
Some of the robber barons of the first Gilded Age were generous philanthropists, as are today's. That didn't excuse the damage they did to America.
Let's be clear: Monopolies aren't good for anyone except for the monopolists.
In this new Gilded Age, we need to respond to them as forcefully as we did the first time around. Warren's ideas are a good start.
Robert Reich Contributor
Robert B. Reich is Chancellor's Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley and Senior Fellow at the Blum Center for Developing Economies. He served as Secretary of Labor in the'...
Any Collusion?
Pelosi Comes Out Against Impeachment
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 09:20
March 11, 2019 at 4:15 pm EDT By Taegan Goddard Leave a Comment
Speaker Nancy Pelosi told the Washington Post she's not focused on impeaching President Trump.
Said Pelosi: ''I'm not for impeachment. This is news. I'm going to give you some news right now because I haven't said this to any press person before. But since you asked, and I've been thinking about this: Impeachment is so divisive to the country that unless there's something so compelling and overwhelming and bipartisan, I don't think we should go down that path, because it divides the country. And he's just not worth it.''
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Shut Up Slave!
Police are slammed for performing STRIP SEARCHES on commuters in Sydney's busy Central Station during peak hour as they hunt for drugs
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 09:41
An active police operation is underway at Sydney's Central station for the peak hour rush - with commuters being subjected to strip searches behind screens on the platform as they search for illegal drugs.
At least 15 police and one sniffer dog were seen roaming the platforms at the busy station on Wednesday pulling up terrified commuters they suspected of being in possession of drugs.
Police were seen performing strip searches being temporary tents that have been set up on the platform of Sydney's biggest station.
(C) Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited An active police operation is currently underway at Central station, in Sydney's CBD The moderator of social media page Sniff Off - which informs the public of police drug dog operations - told Daily Mail Australia there were at least 15 officers and their dogs roaming a busy train station during rush hour.
There were also two strip search cubicles in operation on the platform.
Social response toward the investigation has so far been negative, with people questioning why police are conducting the search on a Wednesday afternoon and in such a location.
'Strip search tents' at the railway station. Where am I living?,' one person wrote.
'Strip search tents, is this actually for real? People can't even go to work without the possibility that they may have to strip naked, squat and cough.'
'And at least 2/3's of those people will be innocent,' another said.
(C) Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited Police were also seen performing strip searches behind temporary screens that have been set up Greens NSW MP David Shoebridge has taken to Twitter to have his say about the operation, calling it 'sickening'.
'Imagine being on your way home from work and being stop by police with their drug dogs and strip searched in a tent on a station platform,' Mr Shoebridge wrote.
'This isn't some dystopian future, this is happening right now in Sydney. This is sickening.'
Daily Mail Australia has contacted NSW Police for comment.
Trump Administration Steps Up Air War in Somalia - The New York Times
Mon, 11 Mar 2019 18:16
Image People standing near the wreckage of a recent Shabab-claimed suicide car bomb attack on a hotel in Mogadishu, Somalia. The Shabab has proved resilient against American airstrikes, and continues to carry out regular bombings in East Africa. Credit Credit Feisal Omar/Reuters WASHINGTON '-- The American military has escalated a battle against the Shabab, an extremist group affiliated with Al Qaeda, in Somalia even as President Trump seeks to scale back operations against similar Islamist insurgencies elsewhere in the world, from Syria and Afghanistan to West Africa.
A surge in American airstrikes over the last four months of 2018 pushed the annual death toll of suspected Shabab fighters in Somalia to the third record high in three years. Last year, the strikes killed 326 people in 47 disclosed attacks, Defense Department data show.
[For more stories about the experiences and costs of war, sign up for the weekly At War newsletter.]
And so far this year, the intensity is on a pace to eclipse the 2018 record. During January and February, the United States Africa Command reported killing 225 people in 24 strikes in Somalia. Double-digit death tolls are becoming routine, including a bloody five-day stretch in late February in which the military disclosed that it had killed 35, 20 and 26 people in three separate attacks.
Africa Command maintains that its death toll includes only Shabab militants, even though the extremist group claims regularly that civilians are also killed. The Times could not independently verify the number of civilians killed. The rise in airstrikes has also exacerbated a humanitarian crisis in the country, according to United Nations agencies and nongovernmental organizations working in the region, as civilians are displaced by conflict and extreme weather.
''People need to pay attention to the fact that there is this massive war going on,'' said Brittany Brown, who worked on Somalia policy at the National Security Council in the Obama and Trump administrations and is now the chief of staff of the International Crisis Group, a nonprofit organization focused on deadly conflicts.
The war in Somalia appears to be ''on autopilot,'' she added, and one that is drawing the United States significantly deeper into an armed conflict without much public debate.
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Somalia, a country that occupies a key strategic location in the Horn of Africa, has faced civil war, droughts and an influx of Islamist extremists over the years. The growing United States military engagement stands in stark contrast to the near-abandonment not long after the ''Black Hawk Down'' battle in 1993, which left 18 Americans and hundreds of militia fighters dead.
The intensifying bombing campaign undercuts the Trump administration's intended pivot to confront threats from great powers like China and Russia, and away from long counterinsurgency and counterterrorism campaigns that have been the Pentagon's focus since 2001.
Analysts suggested that the increase in American strikes may also reflect an unspoken effort by American commanders to inflict as much punishment on the Shabab while they can.
''Many of our commanders probably see a renewed urgency to degrade the enemy quickly and forcefully,'' said Luke Hartig, a former senior director for counterterrorism at the National Security Council during the Obama administration.
Gen. Thomas D. Waldhauser, the head of Africa Command, said planned cutbacks elsewhere would not affect what the military is doing in Somalia.
''We'll maintain our capability and capacity there,'' General Waldhauser told the House Armed Services Committee last Thursday. Africa Command is scaling back American forces nearly everywhere else on the continent in a move that poses a particular threat for West Africa, which is grappling with a range of extremist groups.
The Shabab formally pledged its allegiance to Al Qaeda in 2012. But long before that, it fought Western-backed governments in Mogadishu as the group sought to impose its extremist interpretation of Islam across Somalia. In defending the fragile government, the United States has largely relied on proxy forces, including about 20,000 African Union peacekeepers from Uganda, Kenya and other East African nations.
The United States estimates that the Shabab has about 5,000 to 7,000 fighters in Somalia, but the group's ranks are fluid. A State Department official, citing interviews from Shabab deserters, said that the number of hard-core ideologues may be as few as 500.
There are also now roughly 500 American troops in Somalia. Most are Special Operations forces stationed at a small number of bases spread across the country. Their missions include training and advising Somali army and counterterrorism troops and conducting kill-or-capture raids of their own.
The Shabab has proved resilient against the American airstrikes, and continues to carry out regular bombings in East Africa.
A range of current and former American officials said no seismic strategic shift explains the increased airstrikes and higher body count; the mission remains providing security so the fledgling Somali government will have time and space to develop its own effective military and security services.
But they noted a range of contributing factors for the rise in tempo and lethality of the military campaign.
Image Gen. Thomas D. Waldhauser, the head of the military's Africa Command, testifying before Congress last Thursday. He said planned cutbacks elsewhere will not affect what the military is doing in Somalia. Credit Sarah Silbiger/The New York Times Taking a page from counterinsurgency tactics developed in Afghanistan, American forces have helped Somali soldiers build several outposts across Somalia, about 20 percent of which is still controlled by the Shabab. One is named for Staff Sgt. Alexander W. Conrad, of Chandler, Ariz., who was killed in a mortar attack last year while he helped to build it.
The Shabab views the outposts ''as an irritant, masses to go after it, but fails,'' Maj. Gen. Gregg Olson, the Africa Command's director of operations, said in an interview.
In turn, that has put attacking Shabab fighters in the cross hairs of American airstrikes to defend the Somali forces.
Several officials said intelligence operations '-- including aerial surveillance, electronic intercepts and informant networks '-- have improved over the past year.
American troops with the secretive Joint Special Operations Command have built up informant networks that lead to raids and strikes, after which they collect cellphones, laptops and documents to generate information for more.
The drawdown of American military operations elsewhere in the world '-- including in Syria and, to a lesser immediate extent, Afghanistan '-- also has most likely freed up more drones and other gunships for use over Somalia, several former United States officials said.
''We were geared up for counterterrorism efforts in Somalia, and now there are more resources to do it, so we're doing more of it,'' suggested Stephen Schwartz, who served as the United States ambassador to Somalia from 2016 to 2017, although he cautioned that he had no current insider knowledge.
''It could be there is some well-thought-out strategy behind all of this,'' Mr. Schwartz added, ''but I really doubt it.''
The loosening of Obama-era constraints on using force in Somalia, as approved by President Trump in 2017, has also contributed.
Shortly after taking office, Mr. Trump declared Somalia to be an ''area of active hostilities'' subject to war-zone rules. That freed the United States military to carry out offensive operations whenever Shabab militants presented themselves '-- including against foot soldiers without special skills or roles.
Mr. Trump also delegated authority to commanders to carry out strikes without high-level interagency vetting. But Africa Command was initially slow to embrace it, waiting months before it carried out its first strike in 2017 under the new rules.
Now, however, it has opened the throttle, according to military data compiled by Bill Roggio, a senior fellow at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, who has tracked counterterrorism airstrikes for more than a decade on his Long War Journal.
Many of the recent airstrikes have targeted large groups of suspected fighters, killing more than 10 people in a single fierce swoop. Africa Command has disclosed strikes and estimated death tolls in a series of terse news releases, earning scant attention from Congress or the news media.
Along with the European Union and the United Nations, the United States also has continued to invest in so-called soft power assistance to Somalia, providing humanitarian aid such as food to drought victims, and development programs on education and training.
Officials cited signs of recent incremental progress in efforts to help the Somali government build a functional national army. And in December, the United States re-established a permanent diplomatic presence in Somalia for the first time since 1991. The current United States ambassador to Somalia, Donald Yamamoto, lives in Mogadishu, although the mission consists of a windowless bunker at the well-guarded airport.
There is good reason for caution. In 2013, Shabab militants carried out a deadly attack at the Westgate mall in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi. In January, they attacked a luxury hotel and office complex in Nairobi, killing 21 people. And in late February, the Shabab claimed a double bombing and the siege of a hotel in Mogadishu that killed at least 25 people.
General Olson said the military would continue to go after the Shabab as long as that is its mission.
''We go after the network when the network presents itself, whether a single node or a concentration,'' he said. ''We've developed intelligence and are sussing out the relationship between the leadership and those being led; between those being led and those being trained or recruited or massed for an attack.''
''We understand the network better than we have in years past,'' General Olson said.
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Nerve Attenuation Syndrome
William Gibson Discovered The iPhone In 1995 | TechCrunch
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 17:13
John Biggs 8 years
I was just rewatching the 1995 classic Johnny Mnemonic and, nestled amid the overwrought actors and odd storyline, I heard something that stuck out: mention of a Thomson Eyephone'... or iPhone. If that doesn't mean that William Gibson isn't on the cutting edge of future-tech, I don't know who is and I find it charming that he once thought that Thomson would survive past the new millenium.
I also suggest that you grab the ''I need a computer'' audio for your ringtone. It's a gem.
Linksys iPhone - Wikipedia
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 17:12
The logo for the iPhone line of devices.
The Linksys iPhone was a line of internet appliances from Cisco Systems. The first iPhone model '' released by Infogear in 1998[1][2] '' combined the features of a regular phone and a web terminal. The company was later purchased by Cisco and no new products were marketed under the name between 2001 and 2006. At the end of 2006, Cisco rebranded its Linksys VoIP-based phones under the name, shortly before Apple released an iPhone of its own. This led to a trademark dispute between the two companies, which was resolved on February 20, 2007.
InfoGear iPhone [ edit ] The first iPhone was released in 1998 by InfoGear Technology Corporation. In 1997, prior to the release of iPhone, Infogear entered into a partnership with Cidco of Morgan Hill, California.[3] The iPhone was an innovative internet appliance that featured a sliding keyboard and an LCD touchscreen that accessed an embedded web browser and an email client. It was one of the first wave of internet appliances, preceding the I-Opener, 3Com Audrey and a slew of similar devices from various manufacturers including Alcatel and Nortel. Reviewers praised it for offering a simple and "relatively inexpensive" way to access the Internet, but many criticized its size, lack of features, and US $5 per month in addition to the Internet access charge and the purchase price (US $299).[4][5] Infogear was acquired by Cisco Systems in 2000,[6] A new model was introduced in 2001, but the product was soon discontinued.[citation needed ]
On December 18, 2006, Cisco Systems rebranded an existing line of Linksys Voice over IP internet phones, as it introduced some additional models.[7]
Linksys was acquired by Cisco in June 2003, long after the production of Infogear iPhone had ceased.[8] Unlike its name-sake predecessor, the new iPhone devices use an existing network and proprietary protocols, such as Skype. Rebranding did not involve any feature changes or introduction of new proprietary technology.
Netgear continues the iPhone line under new name [ edit ] iPhone technology previously sold by Linksys was previously, but no longer, available from Netgear as the Netgear SPH200D. Handsets for the two are interchangeable. Linksys never sold additional handsets, leaving Linksys CIT400 users with only one handset although the base station for the CIT400/SPH200D supports up to four. The Netgear SPH150D supplemental handset fills that gap.
Apple iPhone and trademark dispute [ edit ] On January 9, 2007, Steve Jobs announced that Apple Inc. would begin selling its mobile smartphone called iPhone in June of that year. Cisco announced shortly after the announcement that Apple had been in negotiations to use the trademark that Cisco acquired with the purchase of Infogear. However, a day later they announced that they were filing a lawsuit against Apple.[9]
Apple and Cisco settled their dispute on February 20, 2007. Both companies will be allowed to use the "iPhone" name in exchange for "exploring interoperability" between Apple's products and Cisco's services and other unspecified terms.[10]
References [ edit ] ^ The forgotten story of the original iPhone released in 1998, Brian McCullough, Internet History Podcast, June 21, 2015 ^ What the first 'iPhone' looked like'... back in 1998, Yoni Heisler,, Aug 11, 2015 ^ Alliances advance iPhone: Cidco, InfoGear strike partnerships to further screen phone's future ^ Telephone meets touch-screen Internet appliance, CNN November 2, 1998 ^ Gadget: iPhone Archived 2007-09-27 at the Wayback Machine, ^ iPhone Support Archived 2007-01-17 at the Wayback Machine, ^ iPhone--Linksys, ^ Linksys Acquired by Cisco Systems, Inc., (from company profile) ^ Cisco (January 10, 2007). "Cisco Sues Apple for Trademark Infringement". . Retrieved 2007-01-28 . ^ Cisco and Apple Reach Agreement on iPhone Trademark Archived 2008-03-25 at the Wayback Machine,
Urban Dictionary: Nerve Attenuation Syndrome
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 19:02
Nerve Attenuation Syndrome or N.A.S. describes the effects of an engineered attack upon the minds of the populace by a control system.
The system uses a command voice to infiltrate the organic collective consciousness and convince individuals to give over their decision making process to an engineered set of memes that build up over time and act as a literal form of brain washing to reprogram human behavior.
The command voice is most likely delivered through more than one method. Likely candidates of delivery are an international microwave network distributed via something like cell towers or electric power grid nodes that can induce a 'voice to skull' effect on a populace.
Likely candidates for targeting and removal are anti-corporate individuals, scientists/atheists, and general creative thought/artists, positive/confident intellectuals, and government workers/supporters.
The signal is designed to train people to actually give up control of their nervous system and thinking by instilling a mistrust of their own observations and opinions through harassment, negativity, isolation, and intimidation.
This phrase was first coined in the 1981 short story "Johnny Mnemonic" by William Gibson.
synonyms: headache, nerve racking, ADD, ADHD, schizophrenia, psychosis, divine intervention, demon possession, sleep paralysis
see: nerve banging
"I just heard a different kind of
siren go through my neighborhood than I've ever heard before, it wasn't police, fire, or ambulance... and a moment later I felt a pulse of energy
pass through my nervous system. My
nerve attenuation syndrome weakened for a moment and I woke up a little more."
Get a Nerve Attenuation Syndrome mug for your bunkmate Nathalie.
Hallucinations and delusions | Parkinson's UK
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 13:08
Non-motor symptoms of Parkinson'sFatigueBladder and bowel problemsSkin and sweatingSleepEating, swallowing and saliva controlSpeech and communication issuesEye problemsFoot carePainMouth and dental issues in Parkinson'sMild memory and thinking problemsAnxietyDementiaDepressionHallucinations and delusionsBook traversal links for Hallucinations and delusionsSome people with Parkinson's may experience hallucinations or delusions. They are more common in advanced Parkinson's.
A hallucination is when you see, hear or feel things that aren't there.
Delusions are unusual thoughts, beliefs or worries that aren't based on reality.
If you start to experience hallucinations or delusions, or if you have had them before, and the symptoms seem to be getting worse, it is important to get advice from your GP, specialist or Parkinson's nurse as soon as possible.
Hallucinations and delusions usually happen in the later stages of Parkinson's. They can affect both younger and older people in the earlier stages of the condition, but this is less common.
Usually, when people with Parkinson's experience hallucinations and delusions, it will be a side effect of their medication rather than a direct symptom of Parkinson's.
Find out more about hallucinations and delusions as a side effect of Parkinson's medication, including:
types of hallucinations and delusions how they can affect you what you should do about hallucinations and delusions tips for family and carers "One day, I came in the room and there were seven people. I said 'Who are you? What are you doing in here?' And they just glared at me. It's strange and a bit spooky at first."
Watch our short video to hear about Derek's experience of hallucinations.
Goat Power
When is Ramadan in 2019? -
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 14:28
Ramadan in 2019 will start on Monday, the 6th of May ( 6/5/2019 ) and will continue for 30 days until Tuesday, the 4th of June.
Note that in the Muslim calander, a holiday begins on the sunset of the previous day, so observing Muslims will celebrate Ramadan on the sunset of Sunday, the 5th of May.
Although Ramadan is always on the same day of the Islamic calendar, the date on the Gregorian calendar varies from year to year, since the Gregorian calendar is a solar calendar and the Islamic calendar is a lunar calendar. This difference means Ramadan moves in the Gregorian calendar approximately 11 days every year. The date of Ramadan may also vary from country to country depending on whether the moon has been sighted or not.
The dates provided here are based on the dates adopted by the Fiqh Council of North America for the celebration of Ramadan. Note that these dates are based on astronomical calculations to affirm each date, and not on the actual sighting of the moon with the naked eyes. This approach is accepted by many, but is still being hotly debated.
Dates of Ramadan by yearWhen is Ramadan in 2006?When is Ramadan in 2007?When is Ramadan in 2008?When is Ramadan in 2009?When is Ramadan in 2010?When is Ramadan in 2011?When is Ramadan in 2012?When is Ramadan in 2013?When is Ramadan in 2014?When is Ramadan in 2015?When is Ramadan in 2016?When is Ramadan in 2017?When is Ramadan in 2018?When is Ramadan in 2019?When is Ramadan in 2020?When is Ramadan in 2021?When is Ramadan in 2022?When is Ramadan in 2023?When is Ramadan in 2024?When is Ramadan in 2025?When is Ramadan in 2026?When is Ramadan in 2027?When is Ramadan in 2028?When is Ramadan in 2029?Additional services:
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When Syria Came to Fresno: Refugees Test Limits of Outstretched Hand - The New York Times
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 14:31
Image An apartment complex in the San Ramon neighborhood of Fresno, Calif., where many Syrian refugees with large families live in cramped two-bedroom apartments. Credit Credit Jason Henry for The New York Times FRESNO, Calif. '-- The police responded to a call about a loud party on East San Ramon Avenue, but it wasn't just any party: A sheep was reportedly being slaughtered in a backyard.
''Muslim refugees were unaware that slaughtering sheep is not allowed in the city,'' the police wrote afterward in their report, which also stated that those involved ''were advised to clean up the blood and mess'' and warned that in the future ''they could be cited.''
The animal, actually a goat, was killed by a Syrian refugee who later skinned, roasted and shared it with his Syrian neighbors in the apartment complex where they all live.
Refugees are typically placed in towns and cities such as Buffalo, N.Y.; Boise, Idaho; and Fayetteville, Ark., where resettlement agencies ease their transition to life in a new country. But they are free to move about the country like anybody else, and they sometimes land in places like Fresno that are not exactly prepared for their arrival.
Since late 2016, more than 200 Syrian refugees originally settled elsewhere in the United States have made a fresh start in Fresno, the largest city in California's agricultural belt. They have been drawn there mainly by cheap housing.
But behind the low rent is a city struggling with high poverty and unemployment, making it more difficult for the refugees to secure jobs. And Fresno has no federally funded agency to help them find work, learn basics like bus routes and understand United States culture and rules, like with the practice of animal slaughter.
Syrian children turned up unexpectedly at Ahwahnee Middle School, needing vaccinations, trauma counseling, English-language instruction and academic support as a result of interrupted schooling. ''It was a shock at first,'' said Jose Guzman, the principal. ''We never had to teach students who speak Arabic.''
Image Nour Kashak in her kitchen in Fresno in June. Credit Jason Henry for The New York Times He hired an Arabic-speaking teaching assistant, while some of his staff communicated with students with the aid of Google Translate.
Without notice, there also was no time to build political and community support for the new arrivals. So while they elicited gestures of kindness from some, they aroused suspicion from others. Some mosques, churches and a synagogue came to the refugees' aid. A local car broker donated a 1999 Toyota Avalon to one of the Syrians, Abdulrazzaq Alghraibi, a father of four who now works on the de-winging line at a poultry plant.
But Muslim refugees represent a polarizing issue. Although all refugees undergo extensive screening before being approved for resettlement, some Fresnans have echoed President Trump's concerns that the vetting isn't good enough.
Among them is Trevor Carey, a conservative talk-show host on PowerTalk 96.7 FM.
''In my years in the valley, I've met some great Syrian people,'' he said on the air during a segment about Muslim refugees. ''Come on, our safety is at stake here. This area they are coming from is embedded with ISIS.''
Image Abdullah Zakaria with his daughters at their apartment in Fresno. Credit Jason Henry for The New York Times That sentiment was shared by Michael Martin, a 28-year-old who works in air-conditioning maintenance. He praised Fresno's diversity, citing its Armenian and Hmong communities. As for the Syrians, ''I think it's a little bit scary because of what is going on'' in their home country, he said over lunch at the Chicken Pie Shop, a popular local diner.
His father, Joe, was not against their presence. ''Anything is fine as long as they act like us,'' he said.
There is a tradition of refugees continuing to migrate once they reach the United States. In the 1990s, about a dozen evangelical Christian families from the former Soviet Union who originally settled in Oregon and Washington followed a leader to Delta Junction, Alaska, and established a community there.
Many Hmong, an ethnic group from Laos that helped the United States during the Vietnam War, left their first American homes and converged on the Twin Cities, in Minnesota, where leaders like Leng ''Vang'' Wong, a former interpreter for the C.I.A., had settled.
Image Abdulrazzaq Alghraibi, Fatimah, and their son, Mohammed, 9, leaving the Stone Soup Fresno offices. Credit Jason Henry for The New York Times At the moment, no refugees can enter the United States for four months unless they already have a close relative here, according to a Supreme Court order that allowed part of Mr. Trump's travel ban to proceed. But in the past two years, more than 20,000 Syrians have been admitted after fleeing civil war and the Islamic State's ruthless grip on parts of the country.
As the Syrian flow intensified, Turlock, a town about 80 miles north of Fresno that has been receiving Christian minorities from Iraq and Iran for more than a decade, was identified as a site with ''decent housing, jobs and a welcoming mayor,'' said Karen Ferguson, executive director of the International Rescue Committee of Northern California.
About 250 Syrians, overwhelmingly Muslim, were sent there. But the agency could not immediately house all of them, stranding some families in hotels for several weeks or longer.
Last fall, a few members of Fresno's 15,000-strong Muslim community '-- Pakistanis, Yemenis, Iranians and Palestinians, among others '-- offered to help. Soon, they were welcoming four Syrian families to apartments that they had found for them.
Image Zachary Darrah, executive director of Fresno Interdenominational Refugee Ministries, or FIRM, spoke to residents of San Joaquin Gardens last month during a church service in Fresno. Credit Jason Henry for The New York Times Word traveled fast to Turlock and elsewhere that rent in Fresno was a relative bargain '-- about $450 a month for a two-bedroom unit in some places '-- and that there were people ready to supply furniture, food, clothing and more.
''Helping one or two families, that's easy,'' said Reza Nekumanesh, director of the Islamic Cultural Center of Fresno. ''But soon, one family after another was arriving '-- from San Diego, out of state.''
''They didn't realize rent is low here for a reason,'' he said.
Abdullah Zakaria, who ran cafes in Syria, fled to Jordan with his family in 2013 after a bomb struck his house in Homs and burned his eldest child, Tasneem, now 7, whose back still bears scars. They could not find work in Turlock, so they moved to Fresno. Mr. Zakaria and his wife, Aida, are trying to start a business selling kibbehs, shawarmas and sfihas to Fresno State University students and others.
''Fresno is bigger city,'' Mr. Zakaria said. ''I want to open restaurant.''
In a blue-collar neighborhood once dubbed ''Sin City,'' more than a dozen Syrian families with up to nine members apiece are crammed into two-bedroom units in two apartment blocks on East San Ramon Avenue, where the goat roast occurred in February.
Image Reza Nekumanesh, director of the Islamic Cultural Center of Fresno, aids refugees as much as he can. Credit Jason Henry for The New York Times Some have found jobs, including at a carwash and a poultry plant. Nasser Alobeid, who worked as a security guard in Syria, is still jobless, and he and his wife, Neveen Alassad, get by with a $1,100 monthly welfare check, food stamps and help from the local community.
''Nasser doesn't speak English,'' Ms. Alassad, a mother of five, said in broken English while Syrian children poured into a concrete courtyard to play.
Having left a resettlement agency's fold, the refugees no longer had access to interpreters, employment training and English classes. Many couldn't afford the security deposit to rent an apartment.
Help came from across the religious spectrum. The Islamic Cultural Center began paying deposits and utility bills. Wesley United Methodist Church distributed vouchers for its thrift store. Jim Call, a member of the Mormon community, collected donations to buy dining sets and TVs. Congregants from Temple Beth Israel also stepped up.
Image Housing near the San Ramon neighborhood. Cheap rents have been a draw for Syrian refugees. Credit Jason Henry for The New York Times Fresno's new Syrians also are relying on people like Nabih Dagher, whose Dunia International Market sells halal meat, pita bread and other Middle Eastern staples. On a recent afternoon, Mr. Dagher flipped through a notebook in which each page was filled with the name of a Syrian family and the sum owed him from each visit, $56.50 to $449.64.
''I give each family $20, $50 groceries free,'' said Mr. Dagher, a Syrian Christian who has been in the United States for 15 years. ''After that, I said you have to pay.''
In March, the Fresno Board of Supervisors approved a $375,000 grant over four and a half years to Fresno Interdenominational Refugee Ministries, or FIRM, a local nonprofit. The money is paying for four part-time Arabic speakers but doesn't cover the full cost of serving the newcomers, whose needs are ''insane,'' said Zachary Darrah, FIRM's executive director.
Mr. Darrah, a Baptist pastor, has also made it his mission to sell Fresno on the Syrians. Last month he led a service in an upscale retirement community, where he noted that the Syrians arriving in Fresno are ''moderate or secular Muslims.''
Image Nabih Dagher at his Dunia Mediterranean Market in Fresno. He supports local Arab residents by allowing them to run a tab for purchases. Credit Jason Henry for The New York Times ''Everyone is our neighbor, even Muslims,'' he told the worshipers. ''Our God said it doesn't matter.''
Some nodded; others shook their heads. ''As a Christian, I believe in what the Lord says'' about welcoming strangers, said one worshiper, Doris Rahm. But she added, ''I have concerns if they are not vetted properly.''
At another gathering, Mr. Darrah said, ''A guy told me he had a great idea, find some land far from Fresno and send the Syrians there because they're a danger to the community.'' Mr. Darrah said he then told the man that Fresno during World War II had an internment camp for Japanese-Americans, a blemish on its past.
But there have been no reports of anti-Muslim violence or vandalism. And Syrians keep arriving. Among them is Anas Hammad, a baker and father of two, who was originally settled in Michigan.
Mr. Alghraibi, the new owner of the old Toyota, has invited friends living in Tennessee who had been his neighbors in a refugee camp in Turkey.
''I've gotten calls from Indiana, Florida, Texas,'' said Mr. Darrah. ''We can't stop families from coming here. ''
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Smartphone Addicts' New Tactic to Break Their Habit: Buy a Second Phone - WSJ
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 14:19
Dan Dolar was ready to take a break from the distractions of his smartphone. So he bought another phone.
The 47-year-old IT worker, who lives in Manteca, Calif., now typically carries his new 3.8-inch Palm ''companion device'' around with him on weekends, leaving his bigger Samsung Galaxy Note 9 at home.
The new gadget helps when he's ''living that dad life,'' he said, while reducing the potential distractions. Without his big smartphone, he said, ''I'm not compelled to get that dopamine rush.''
Smartphone-fatigued consumers are renegotiating their relationships with their devices. A growing contingent is embracing a new crop of minimalist phones, priced around $300 to $350, to wean themselves off premium models that keep them constantly connected.
Some are concerned that social media-usage is robbing them of interpersonal connections and making them less attentive. Others are annoyed by recent data privacy scandals at large internet and social-media companies'--or they want the simple practicality of carrying a smaller phone.
''It's totally a First World problem, but it's so much more convenient,'' Mr. Dolar said of his Palm. The $350 device shares a number with his primary smartphone and can host the same apps as his main phone, just on a smaller screen.
After launching in October, about 68,000 of the new Palm devices were shipped in the final quarter of last year, according to research firm Canalys. That is still a fraction of the roughly 45.8 million smartphones shipped in the U.S. during that period, according to market researcher Gartner Inc.
Cecilia D'Urso uses a 4.6-inch-long phone from Swiss devicemaker Punkt, which has a small, dark screen that allows only basic phone calls and texts. The 22-year-old art student in Turin, Italy, started using it after feeling stressed out by social media and chat notifications on her Huawei smartphone.
''Every second of my life I was available and online on every platform,'' Ms. D'Urso said. She now uses her old smartphone only when she needs to post her work to Instagram.
When the first Punkt model came out in 2015, the average user age was 40 to 45 years old, said founder Petter Neby. The average user age on its most recent model, which costs $349 and was released last fall, is 22 to 35. Mr. Neby said that's in part because younger users raised in the age of social media are now taking a step back from those services. Punkt said it has sold tens of thousands of its mobile phones since the launch of its first such device in 2015.
The phone doesn't include an internet browser or a way to add apps, but it can turn into a Wi-Fi hot spot to bring internet access to a laptop or tablet.
Major smartphone makers are still pushing more powerful mobile devices with big screens and a host of cameras. At the telecom industry's premier trade show in Barcelona last month, Huawei and Samsung both showed off smartphones with foldable screens and price tags of more than $1,000.
There are signs that the world's appetite for the latest, flashiest smartphone is waning as the devices become more commoditized and other connected items, such as smartwatches and smart home speakers, duplicate some of their functionality. Smartphone shipments world-wide have been falling since late 2017.
Faced with public anger over the effects of technology on social relationships and young people, companies including Apple Inc. and Facebook Inc. have also released new screen-time limiting features and applications. Instagram users can set up notifications when they have spent a predetermined amount of time on the service.
In another tactic to reduce screen time, some users have turned to simple clamshell flip phones, for $30 to $50, that just allow calls and texts.
Filmmakers J¶rg Tittel and Alex Helfrecht in London recently left all their phones at home for a weekend at a spa, in an effort to separate themselves from their devices.
Mr. Tittel said the couple talked to each other. Ms. Helfrecht read an entire novel in Old French, working out the translations herself rather than looking them up online.
Mr. Tittel uses a Punkt phone for personal use and an iPhone occasionally for work. ''I'm enjoying the fact that I'm not a slave to technology,'' he said of his minimalist phone.
Makers of the new devices are still grappling with the line between simplicity and functionality.
The first device from Brooklyn, N.Y.-based Light officially launched in January 2017 with funding from a Kickstarter campaign. Designed by two former Google employees to be used as little as possible, the credit-card-sized devices could only make phone calls.
Light said it sold about 15,000 of the phones and had another 18,000 unfulfilled orders because the company shifted its efforts toward creating the next model. That one, due to be released this summer, will cost $300 and include a ride-sharing application, the ability to upload and play music, an alarm, and GPS for giving simple directions.
The company has raised $8 million from investors including Foxconn Technology Group, a Taiwanese supplier to Apple.
Kaiwei Tang, co-founder and chief executive of Light, equated having multiple phones to having different clothes and shoes for different occasions. Personally, he hasn't given up using his iPhone, which he's had for at least five years and still uses for work.
''I'll be honest. It's not easy,'' he said of leaving home without his smartphone.
Write to Sarah Krouse at
EPIC - EPIC Challenges Facial Recognition at Airport, Files FOIA Lawsuit for Agency Procedures
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 18:27
Airport security EPIC v CBP Facial Recognition
EPIC Challenges Facial Recognition at Airport, Files FOIA Lawsuit for Agency ProceduresEPIC has filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit to determine whether the U.S. government is allowing travelers to opt-out of facial recognition at airports. The "alternative screening procedures" should allow travelers to provide identification documents, such as a passport, and avoid facial recognition, which "is not mandatory for U.S. citizens" according to the CBP. But research by EPIC indicates that Custom and Border Protection has modified the program, making it increasingly difficult for travelers to opt-out. This week, Buzzfeed featured documents EPIC obtained about this flawed facial recognition program, which the Administration is seeking to establish at all U.S. airports. EPIC has urged Congress to suspend the CBP Biometric Entry-Exit program until privacy safeguards and meaningful opt-out procedures are established. The case is EPIC v. CBP, No. 19-cv-689 (D.D.C. March 12, 2019).
Web inventor urges users to seek 'complete control' of data
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 09:38
World Wide Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee on Monday slammed the increasing commodification of personal information and appealed for internet users to strive to maintain "complete control" of their data.
Berners-Lee, credited with creating the web in 1989, is on a mission to save his invention from a range of problems increasingly dominating online life, including misinformation and a lack of data protection.
"You should have complete control of your data. It's not oil. It's not a commodity," he told a small group of journalists gathered at Europe's physics lab CERN, where he first came up with the idea for the web 30 years ago.
When it comes to personal data, "you should not be able to sell it for money," he said, "because it's a right".
Berners-Lee, who last year launched a development platform called "Solid" aimed at giving users control of their data, described a frightening future if we do not rise to the challenge of privacy protection.
"There is a possible future you can imagine (in which) your browser keeps track of everything that you buy," he said.
In this scenario, "your browser actually has more information then Amazon does", he said, warning against complacency in expecting no harm will come from this loss of control over one's own data.
"We shouldn't assume that the world is going to stay like it is," he said.
People needed to do more to protect themselves and their data and not to simply expect that governments will look out for their best interests, he argued.
Berners-Lee told a Washington Post event last week that he launched the Solid projet in response to concerns about personal data being bought and sold without the consent of users.
- 'Don't fail the web -
The platform aimed "to separate the apps from the data storage" so users could decide where and how they would share their personal information, he said.
He acknowledged Monday that enforcible laws would be needed to protect the most sensitive personal data.
"Sometimes it has to be legislation which says personal data, you know, genetic data, should never be used," he said.
In addition to his work advocating for data protection, Berners-Lee has launched a "Contract for the Web", aimed at ensuring the integrity of online information.
In a letter published Monday, he hailed the opportunities the web had created, giving marginalised groups a voice and making daily life easier.
But he warned, "it has also created opportunity for scammers, given a voice to those who spread hatred, and made all kinds of crimes easier to commit".
He was nevertheless optimistic that the problems could be fixed.
"Given how much the web has changed in the past 30 years, it would be defeatist and unimaginative to assume that the web as we know it can't be changed for the better in the next 30," he wrote.
"If we give up on building a better web now, then the web will not have failed us. We will have failed the web."
Internet users must fight to keep control of their data, says the inventor of the World Wide Web, British scientist Tim Berners-Lee
Scientists say Apple AirPods and other wireless headphones may be linked to cancer - TheBlaze
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 10:15
Apple's wireless AirPods may cause cancer, according to hundreds of scientists from all over the world.
More than 250 scientists have signed a petition urging the United Nations and World Health Organization to develop stronger guidelines regarding the potential cancer risk and other health effects caused by non-ionizing electromagnetic fields, or EMFs.
Last year, Apple sold more than 28 million pairs of AirPods and more than 16 million the year prior, according to the Daily Mail. The popular AirPods connect wirelessly to a user's phone or computer via Bluetooth technology. Bluetooth technology uses low-power radio waves.
The petition warns against all types of radio frequency radiation, including WiFi, cellular data, and Bluetooth devices.
What's the story?Some animal studies have suggested there is a link between radio frequency radiation and cancer.
"Numerous recent scientific publications have shown that EMF affects living organisms at levels well below most international and national guidelines," according to the petition.
Some experts believe that AirPods may be especially dangerous since the devices sit deep inside the ear canal where they emit radiation to fragile parts of the ear.
The scientists also noted other possible health hazards, including an increase in harmful free radicals, genetic damages, structural and functional changes of the reproductive system, learning and memory deficits, and neurological disorders.
Do other researchers disagree? Some researchers disagree with the authors of the petition.
Bluetooth technology communicates to a cellular device that's usually not more than a few feet away, which means that,"it's transmitting at quite a low power level," University of Pennsylvania bioengineering professor Kenneth Foster told the Los Angeles Times in a 2016 interview about wireless headphones.
A person's exposure to EMF radiation is "absolutely minimal '' smaller by a huge amount that the exposure of putting a phone to your ear," Foster said.
One of the greatest risks may be hearing loss from listening to music too loudly on your headphones, but many experts agree that the technology doesn't increase one's risk of developing cancer, according to the report.
What else?In 2002 and 2011, the International Agency for Research on Cancer classified EMF and ELF (extremely low frequency) fields as possibly carcinogenic.
The scientists are calling for greater oversight and additional warnings for all types of technology that emit radio waves.
"The various agencies setting safety standards have failed to impose sufficient guidelines to protect the general public, particularly children who are more vulnerable to the effects of EMF," the petition said. "By not taking action, the WHO is failing to fulfill its role as the preeminent international public health agency."
Facebook and Instagram Suffer Lengthy Outages - WSJ
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 12:54
March 14, 2019 1:02 a.m. ET Facebook Inc.'s popular Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp apps were inaccessible for millions of users for much of Wednesday and into Thursday.
A Facebook status page for developers listed the outage as lasting 11 hours early Thursday on the East Coast, making it one of the longer disruptions of recent years.
While internet companies occasionally...
Facebook Inc.'s popular Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp apps were inaccessible for millions of users for much of Wednesday and into Thursday.
A Facebook status page for developers listed the outage as lasting 11 hours early Thursday on the East Coast, making it one of the longer disruptions of recent years.
While internet companies occasionally experience outages caused by problems ranging from natural disasters to surges of web traffic, it is rare for such an established company to go down for so long. The outage could force Facebook to issue refunds to advertisers'--many of which use its platforms as a core means of reaching consumers'--and further damage a brand already dented by scandals surrounding privacy and data protection.
Facebook's woes quickly became top news on Twitter Inc.'s rival network, where the day's top trending topics included #FacebookDown.
''To all my friends who work as digital marketers/social media specialists: take a day off and have a good rest,'' one user posted to Twitter.
Facebook's primary communication about the outage also took place on Twitter. The company didn't identify a cause, but said it wasn't related to a distributed denial-of-service attack, in which nefarious actors coordinate to bring down a service.
''We're working to resolve the issue as soon as possible,'' Facebook said in a tweet.
Write to Georgia Wells at
North Korean diplomats in Spain: CIA implicated in attack on North Korean embassy in Madrid | In English | EL PAS
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 20:54
Investigators from the Spanish police and National Intelligence Center (CNI) have linked an attack on the North Korean embassy in Madrid on February 22 to the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).
Sources believe the goal of the attack embassy was to get information on the former North Korean ambassador to Spain
At least two of the 10 assailants who broke into the embassy and interrogated diplomatic staff have been identified and have connections to the US intelligence agency. The CIA has denied any involvement but government sources say their response was ''unconvincing.''
If it is proven that the CIA was behind the attack, it could lead to a diplomatic spat between Madrid and Washington. Government sources say that it would be ''unacceptable'' for an ally to take such action. Not only would it mean that the US agency had operated on Spanish soil without asking for authorization or informing the authorities, it would also be a violation of the international conventions that protect diplomatic delegations.
What's more, unlike other intelligence activities '' such as cyberattacks, which are characterized by their discretion, the attack on the North Korean embassy was especially violent. On February 22 at 3pm, 10 masked men carrying alleged imitation weapons broke into the embassy, located north of the capital in the residential area of Aravaca. They tied up the eight people inside and put bags on their heads. The victims were beaten and interrogated. A woman managed to escape from a window on the second floor and her screams for help were heard by a neighbor, who contacted the police.
Officers arrived at the scene but when they tried to enter the embassy a man opened the door to them and told them that there was nothing going on. Minutes later, two luxury vehicles sped out of the embassy. The cars used for the getaway belonged to the diplomatic mission and were later abandoned in a nearby street.
The assailants tied up the eight people inside the embassy and put bags on their heads
Police found the eight victims inside. They had been held hostage for two hours, had had bags placed over their heads, had been beaten and were scared. Two of them required medical attention.
Investigators from the General Information Office (CGI) and CNI ruled out the idea that the attack was the work of common criminals. The operation was perfectly planned as if it were carried out by a ''military cell,'' said sources close to the investigation. The assailants knew what they were looking for, taking only computers and mobile phones.
The highly secretive investigation will be heard at Spain's High Court, the Audiencia Nacional, which could order the arrest of the identified assailants. Government sources, however, admit it would be difficult to prove the CIA was involved in court.
Kim Hyok CholSources believe that the goal of the attack on the North Korean embassy was to get information on Kim Hyok Chol, the former North Korean ambassador to Spain.
Former North Korean ambassador to Spain, Kim Hyok Chol, in a file photo from 2015. CARLOS ROSILLO Kim Hyok Chol was expelled from Spain on September 19, 2017 by the then-Spanish Foreign Minister Alfonso Dastis given that the nuclear testing that the country was carrying out at the time was in serious breach of United Nations Security Council resolutions.
Kim Hyok Chol, who was declared persona non grata by Spain and was invited to leave the country before the end of the month, is currently one of Kim Jong-un's highly trusted diplomats, and one of the architects of the failed nuclear summit between US President Donald Trump and Kim Jon-un in Vietnam. The meeting, aimed at securing North Korea's nuclear disarmament, ended in failure without any agreement on a timetable for disarmament or on future negotiations.
In February, Kim Hyok Chol also led the North Korean delegation that negotiated a nuclear disarmament plan with US special envoy Stephen Biegun in exchange for sanctions to be lifted.
English version by Melissa Kitson.
Rep. Ocasio-Cortez backed modern monetary theory, no economists agree - Business Insider
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 02:07
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. J. Scott Applewhite/AP Images Modern monetary theory (MMT) is becoming a larger part of the economic conversation. The theory posits that government deficits are less concerning if a country controls its own currency and issues debt in that currency. MMT says that the amount a government can spend is limited by real assets and the debt's effect on the broader economy. MMT has received a huge amount of pushback. In a new survey, not a single mainstream economist agreed with the basic tenants of MMT. Modern monetary theory (MMT) is having a moment.
The once fringe idea has been vaulted into the national conversation as progressive economists and some politicians seize hold of the economic theory. Even Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell has weighed in on MMT.
However, according to a new survey, MMT may be getting attention, but it is not getting much support among some of the country's top economists.
Put (very) simply, MMT posits that a country that controls its own currency can continue to pay down its debt as long as it is denominated in that currency. So since the US prints dollars and issues debt in dollars, it can pay down its debts and does not need to rely on taxes to fund debt issuance.
Instead, the theory says, a country in the aforementioned situation is limited by the availability of real assets. So while we can't just ignore the national debt, unlike a household budget, the debt number '-- such as the US's record $22 trillion debt load '-- doesn't matter until inflation and economic effects show up.
Explained to Marketplace by the economist Stephanie Kelton, an MMT proponent, Congress would use fiscal policy to control how much money goes into the economy. To borrow Marketplace's metaphor, Congress would be a sink faucet, money would be the water, and the stoppered sink bowl would be the economy. To deal with inflation (an overflow out of the bowl) you can lessen the flow of water into the bowl. Taxes would also act as the stopper letting money out of the economy sink bowl.
The idea has gained a following among progressive economists and some politicians. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez told Business Insider in January that MMT should be "a larger part of our conversation."
Read more: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez says the theory that deficit spending is good for the economy should 'absolutely' be part of the conversation
But the idea has also faced intense pushback from economists and pundits across the political spectrum, and a new survey showed that no mainstream economist is ready to sign on to the idea just yet.
In the latest survey of 42 of America's top economists by the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, not a single respondent agreed with the basic tenants of MMT:
Thirty-six percent of economists disagreed, and 52% strongly disagreed with the statement, "Countries that borrow in their own currency should not worry about government deficits because they can always create money to finance their debt." (Two percent had no opinion.) Twenty-six percent of economists disagreed, and 57% of economists strongly disagreed with the statement, "Countries that borrow in their own currency can finance as much real government spending as they want by creating money." (Seven percent had no opinion.) A number of the responding economists said that continued debt issuance would lead to persistent inflation problems and were concerned about the long-term sustainability of MMT.
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War on Vaping
Most Flavors of E-Cigarettes Set to Be Banned From Retail Stores
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 03:50
Video by NewsyThe U.S. Food and Drug Administration moved forward with its much-anticipated plan to limit sales of most flavored e-cigarettes in an effort to curb what it calls an epidemic of youth vaping.
The agency released a draft guideline for the industry on Wednesday, just weeks before Commissioner Scott Gottlieb is set to step down. The move is one of Gottlieb's signature priorities after antismoking advocates blamed his earlier steps to ease restrictions for e-cigarettes for the rise in underage use.
The proposal calls for enhancing enforcement against flavored e-cigarette sales in retail locations where a minor can enter at any time, such as a convenience store or gas station. The restrictions won't apply to tobacco, mint or menthol-flavored e-cigarettes. In the FDA's view, those flavors are geared toward adults who are trying to quit smoking.
The American Heart Association called the exemption for mint and menthol flavors a ''major oversight.'' Chief Executive Officer Nancy Brown said in a statement that the organization's Tobacco Regulation and Addiction Center found that menthol was the second-most popular e-cigarette flavor among teens. The advocacy group urged the FDA to remove all flavored products from the market.
The FDA is also moving up by a year to August 2021 the deadline for companies that make e-cigarettes that came to market after February 2007 to submit applications for marketing clearance from the FDA. That could mean some devices will come off the market. The public will have 30 days to comment on the guideline, which will take effect 30 days after it is finalized.
Juul Labs Inc., the vaping industry leader whose thumb-drive-size devices are popular with teens, said in November it would stop selling most flavored nicotine pods in retail stores. Shares of tobacco giant Altria Group Inc., which recently took a $12.8 billion stake in Juul, rose 0.7 percent to $56.17 at 3:52 p.m. in New York.
Read more: Juul said to plan halt on some vaping devices as FDA readies cuts
The proposal would also subject flavored cigars that came to market after February 2007 to enhanced enforcement if they don't come off the market once the guidance is finalized. They would have to seek clearance from the FDA to restart sales.
The FDA has the ''strong support'' of President Donald Trump and Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, Gottlieb said in a statement. Health advocates were concerned that Gottlieb's departure would threaten the likelihood of e-cigarette restrictions being finalized. Azar said Tuesday that Ned Sharpless, head of the National Cancer Institute, would be acting commissioner after Gottlieb leaves later this month. Sharpless has expressed support for Gottlieb's vaping restrictions.
(C) Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg A person exhales vapor. For more articles like this, please visit us at
VIDEO - Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez | SXSW 2019 - YouTube
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 14:58
VIDEO - Alex Jones: Trump's Betrayal Of Americans' Rights Heartbreaking!
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 14:48
President Trump hasn't delivered on many of his core promises Alex Jones | - March 13, 2019 Many in the Trump base are growing restless with the president's inaction on everything from border security to big tech censorship. Alex Jones sends a message to the president and offers solutions directly '-- but Trump needs to act now!
Infowars version with live comments:
Watch Alex Jones Heartbroken Over Trump's Betrayal Of The American People from infowars_LIVE on
ðŸ' #AlexJones Heartbroken Over Trump's Betrayal Of The American People!
'-- Brian Wilson (@RedPilledTV) March 13, 2019
VIDEO - Ripon Parents Say School's Cell Tower Is Causing Cancer '' CBS Sacramento
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 14:34
RIPON (CBS13) '-- A fourth child has been diagnosed with cancer at a San Joaquin County elementary school, and parents believe it's because of radiation caused by a cell phone tower.
The towers are spread throughout the community, but it's this particular one that parents say needs to go.
''We had a doctor tell us that it's 100 percent environmental, the kind of tumor that he has,'' said Monica Ferrulli.
Her son Mason was the second child to be diagnosed with cancer in just three years at Weston Elementary. He was 10-years-old and walked by this cell phone tower daily.
''It's indescribable, it's really tough,'' she said.
''It's one of the hardest things that I've been through,'' said Joe Prime.
WATCH: Caught On Camera: Mom Holds Down 13-Year-Old, Urges Daughter To Fight
Prime's son Kyle was the first, diagnosed with kidney cancer in 2016. And two more kids were diagnosed this year.
''It just seems like coincidence is no longer a reason for all this illness,'' Prime said.
They believe it's this cell phone tower that's harming their kids.
''Kids shouldn't be guinea pigs and we shouldn't be taking chances with the children's lives,'' Prime said.
The district has had several tests done saying the tower is safe and meets federal regulations. But some families weren't convinced and hired an expert.
''I wouldn't send my kids there at all, it absolutely is dangerous,'' said Eric Windheim, an electromagnetic radiation specialist. ''Children are still developing and their cells are still being divided. It's the worst possible time in their life to be exposed.''
He says it's not just a cell tower, it also transmits wireless frequencies.
ALSO: Study: Smoking While Pregnant Doubles Risk Of Sudden Death For Babies
''Instead of only going 300 yards like regular Wi-Fi, Y-Max can go 30 miles,'' he said.
Parents want the mast removed, but the district won't budge. Parents say the district gets a kickback of $2,000 a month to have the tower for a telephone company, but the district so far has not commented.
''It's a real disappointment that it's taking moms of sick children and dads of sick children to come out and say something needs to be done,'' Prime said.
Ferrulli's son Mason has also since relapsed and is undergoing brain cancer treatments while a fourth child from has recently been diagnosed and taken out of school.
They say it's not just a battle now for their children, but a fight these parents say they won't give up.
''There's a lot of kids that we love that still go to the school, so we are fighting for them,'' Ferrulli said.
The district sent out a letter to parents saying that the electric magnetic frequencies are far below federal standards and have completed a thorough investigation and do not have any plans of removing the cell phone tower on campus.
ALSO: Swipe below to see a few items on's list of safe things that were once considered dangerous. Full list
Clothes The writers of the 1901 Boston Daily Globe article ''Don't Wear Clothes: That is, if You Would be Entirely Healthy..." wrote: ''If the doctors are to be believed, the wearing of clothes is more dangerous to human life than their utter absence would be.'' Doctors consulted for the article said that wearing cotton and linen as well as waistcoats and garters were "a permanent menace to life and health."
Licking Stamps In the early part of the 20th century, long before stamps became stickers, The New York Times warned against the dangers of licking stamps. (photo credit: iStock) Gum We were always warned not to swallow gum because it could get stuck in your intestines for seven years. This is false. It'll pass through you like all other food, but it's still not a good thing to do. (photo credit: iStock)
The Color Purple Origin: Europe and Asia Interior decorators in the early 1900s wouldn't use purple. A Boston Globe article from 1903'--titled ''Dangerous Tints: Some Colors Will Drive a Person Mad if the Eyes Are Continually Looking at Them.'' (photo credit: Thinkstock)
Dancing In 1926, the Washington Post reported on a girl who perished after dancing the Charleston. (photo credit: iStock)
Tomato On the wrong platter, the tomato had the power to kill. Some European aristocrats became sick and died after eating tomatoes, earning the fruit the title ''poison apple.'' The tomato itself wasn't deadly'--but its high acidity caused it to ''leach lead'' from the pewter plate, resulting in lead poisoning. (photo credit: iStock)
Public Transportation Straps Hanging onto public transportation straps were said to put too much physical strain on women's muscles and their internal organs. (photo credit: iStock) Girls Playing Competitive Sports The the 1920s, people used to think that in order for girls to stay desirable and get married, they need to refrain from practicing competitive sports (photo credit: iStock)
Dungeons & Dragons In the 1980s, the popular role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons, or D&D, came under fire when suicides and murders were loosely linked to the game. Here's a full list of complaints against the game. (photo credit: iStock) Sitting Too Close to the TV Long before flatscreen TVs, they used to emit radiation that could affect viewers' eyesight if they were exposed for a long time. in 1967, a ''factory error'' GE TVs to emit 10 to 100,000 times the amount of radiation health officials deemed acceptable. The problem was quickly corrected. Radiation is no longer a worry, but watching screens for prolonged periods can still strain your eyes. TVs are the least of our problems.
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VIDEO - $27,000 Worth Of Goats Have Gone Missing In California's Fresno County : NPR
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 14:26
A woman's actions led police in Fresno County, Calif., to pay more attention to a spike in the theft of goats since January.
Fresno County, Calif., is experiencing a rash of goat theft.
Here's how Fresno TV station KFSN ABC30's Cory James reported the story a few days ago.
CORY JAMES, BYLINE: Goat theft is becoming a growing crime in the Central Valley. Most of the thefts happening in Easton and going...
SHAPIRO: The criminal investigation ratcheted up after Kristy Picquette reported 11 goats stolen last Thursday. She then contacted the media to bring attention to the thefts.
KRISTY PICQUETTE: Originally it wasn't a high priority until, I think, the news outlets started asking them questions like, what are you doing to help all these families find their animals?
CORNISH: All told, more than 60 goats have vanished from farms in the county in the last two months. Police estimate the total value of those animals at $27,000. And now they're taking this crime wave seriously.
TONY BOTTI: The beginning of this week, we really threw a lot of resources at this.
SHAPIRO: That is Fresno County Sheriff's Department spokesman Tony Botti.
BOTTI: Numerous detectives on that team are treating this as a top priority right now. They've scoured the area for surveillance video, which has been few and far between. We just have really come up dry on leads.
SHAPIRO: Spokesman Botti says he can't recall such a widespread goat-related crime wave as this one.
BOTTI: What it tells us is that there's a market for goats right now. What's being taken are the females. Some of these females are even pregnant, so they're getting a two-for-one when they steal these goats. And what we know is that females are sought after for both milk and meat purposes.
CORNISH: Police found four of Kristy Picquette's stolen goats. They were wandering on a road. Now she's determined to find the rest of her herd.
PICQUETTE: Today I plan on going out and driving around and searching within a 5- to 10-mile radius.
CORNISH: Her sons, age 12 and 14, have been raising the goats as a 4-H project.
PICQUETTE: And it's been a lot of hard work and a lot of blood, sweat and tears that my kids have put into these projects. They're not just livestock. Goats are very personable, very lovable. So these goats were a part of our family. You know, we cared for them day-in, day-out. It's just heartbreaking and devastating for a 12- and 14-year-old.
SHAPIRO: Police say owners have provided good descriptions of the missing animals, and they think there may be one person or crew behind the thefts. In the absence of solid leads, the sheriff's department's Tony Botti advises the public in Fresno to stay vigilant and do their best to protect their herds.
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VIDEO - Tucker Carlson Tonight on Fox News 3/13/19[FULL] - Tucker Carlson Fox News on March 13, 2019 - YouTube
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 13:52
VIDEO - YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki on Kara Swisher's Recode Decode podcast - Recode
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 12:20
On the latest episode of Recode Decode, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki joined Recode's Kara Swisher onstage at the Lesbians Who Tech summit in San Francisco. Wojcicki talked about how YouTube is trying to keep young users safe by changing some of its policies, how she felt about the Google walkout last fall, and how the company is using AI to police toxic comments and which videos get recommended by the YouTube algorithm.
''We have to use humans and machines,'' Wojcicki said. ''And it's the combination of using humans to generate basically what we'll call the golden set or the initial set, the set that our machines can learn from. And then it's the machines that go out and actually extend all this amazing knowledge that the humans have, and to be able to do that at scale.''
You can listen to Recode Decode wherever you get your podcasts, including Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Pocket Casts, and Overcast.
Below, we've shared a lightly edited full transcript of Kara's conversation with Susan.
Kara Swisher: Susan and I have known each other, we just figured out, for about 20 years.
Susan Wojcicki: Yep.
We met a long time ago. I'll tell this story very quickly. Her and it was Larry Page ... Who else was with us?
David Drummond.
David Drummond, who was the ...
Megan ... Came to New York to talk to book publishers about putting book stuff on Google in the very early days, and there was an electrical outage that ...
Yes, on the entire eastern seaboard.
And so they had to stay in my mom's apartment on the floor, and ended up spending the night on the floor, which Larry Page, even for an hour, is a lot. And we had a really great talk.
Yeah, in the dark.
In the dark about where the internet was going.
No electricity.
Yeah. So it was kind of a fascinating time to get to know each other. And since then, obviously, a lot has changed. So I want to just say, Susan is one of my favorite people in Silicon Valley. That said ...
You're going to ask me lots of hard questions.
Yes, I am. That said, it's really a difficult time for Silicon Valley right now, and I want to talk about some big issues about where YouTube is, where Google is, and the culpability of technology in the disaster that we find ourselves in. But she's super fun at a party.
Anyway, so let's start with that. This week, yesterday, you've had the latest controversy around YouTube, and there's a controversy a day. Not just YouTube, but Facebook and others ... Was around pedophiles and the use of YouTube as a tool for pedophiles. So why don't you talk a bit about what you all have done, and then I'll have some questions about what happened in this situation.
Sure. Sure. So, first of all, I just want to say that we take kids' safety incredibly seriously, and I'd say also the last two years have really been focused on responsibility of our platforms, and everything we've done has been through those lenses of how can we make sure that what we're doing, the way we're growing, is through responsibly.
And so in particular, with this specific incident that happened around child safety, which I take very seriously. I'm a mom. I actually have five children from four to 19, so I understand kids. At least, as a parent I understand it, and really want to do the right thing.
So as soon as we were made aware of these issues that were happening, and we had been working on child safety since we first launched YouTube Kids and became aware, but we became aware of some comments. The videos were okay. The videos were not violative, but the comments with those videos were, and as soon as we were made aware of them ... The number was in the low thousands ... We removed comments off of tens of millions of videos. We basically did that almost instantly, just in an abundance of caution, to make sure that we were able to stop it.
And then in the last week, and just yesterday, we spent time looking at our policies, and we announced some really significant changes, one of which is that we are no longer going to allow comments on videos that are featuring young minors anymore, and older minors that are engaged in risky behavior. And we also launched a new classifier that has 2X the potential to find comments that we think will be problematic.
Okay. Couple questions.
''Made aware.'' Why didn't you know that? When I have a platform of my making or something, I know what's happening on my platform. I know what's happening in the comments. Silicon Valley in general has been sort of doing this. It's not YouTube as much as Facebook, but it's the excessive ''I'm sorry'' tour. Like, oops, sorry. Oops, sorry. Oops, sorry. And it's the questions, like ''made aware.'' ''We were made aware.'' ''We didn't realize it.''
Talk about what goes into these platforms, and I realize the amount of video going over them. I realize how big it is. I realize the technical problem going in, but sometimes it feels as if they don't have any sense of anyone ... It seems like they live a life that's very safe. It's typically white, young men, and they don't understand the lack of safety for so many other people, not just children. So talk about that.
Yeah. Well, so I will say we have been very focused on child safety. It wasn't like we were suddenly made aware and then we started focusing on child safety or comments. We have been doing that for the last couple years. The reason we were actually able to launch a classifier that had double the capacity is because we had been working on that to make sure that we were able to remove those comments. So all of this has been ongoing work.
The policy change to say we are no longer going to allow comments on minors, featuring young minors is ... We're a platform that is really balancing between freedom of speech and also managing with our community guidelines. I think there are going to be many young people out there that are going to be upset because they're going to feel like they're posting videos and they no longer have the ability to use comments in the way that other creators can to be able to get feedback on their videos about what's useful, what went well, what should their next video be about, what was successful.
And so this change took away some of the ability of people who are innocent, young people who are innocent who are posting, or their parents who are posting videos. In the end, that was a trade-off that we made because we felt like we wanted to make sure that protecting children was our No. 1 priority.
So doing a sweeping thing versus consulting, say, the parents, you can't decide between what ...
Parents can always decide. So parents can always turn off the comments. That's a functionality that everybody has. We also have classifiers for people to search through them. We search through them, turn them off if we find anything that's violative in the comments just automatically, and so we give tools to our creators. But it's a process where we're trying to always get better, but in this specific case, we had to make a choice between giving people who are innocent and creating videos themselves and then making a decision about their safety.
Great, but I get back to the idea that comments are just vile on YouTube. Anyone who's a woman gets ...
I have a channel.
Yes, you have a channel. They're vile. When you look at them, don't you say, ''Why is this even occurring? Why am I even allowing this to happen?''
Well, first of all, we have community guidelines, and YouTube has had community guidelines since the very beginning, and those community guidelines include things like hate speech, and promotion to violence, and all kinds of other core areas that we believe in, but comments is a really important part of the platform for creators and fans, and they can always turn it off if they want to.
Here's the thing. ''They can always turn it off.'' That's really not ... Like, it's off or on. It's not that you are monitoring your platform in a way that's responsible.
We do. We do. We do run classifiers. We look at the comments. We actually remove hundreds of millions of comments every quarter that we think are problematic, so we are monitoring it. But you have to realize the volume that we have is very substantial, and we're working to give creators more tools as well for them also to be able to manage it.
When you talk about the volume, there is the volume, but y'all created it, you know what I mean? Like, I'm sorry '-- and it's not you in particular, but you all '-- sometimes it feels like you have all reaped the benefit, but not the responsibility of having a platform, you know what I mean? And again, I think that a lot of the focus has been on Facebook on this, because it looks like, in their case, it's a lot of sloppy management. That they just didn't put the rules in place, or the tools in place, or things like that, and I do ...
Again, I get that it's a massive problem, so what are the solutions to this? Because one of the solutions is regulatory. If all of a sudden tomorrow Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act was removed from you all, you'd have to figure it out rather quickly, right? You don't have a broad immunity. What would you do?
Well, for the last two years, we have been really, really focused on responsibility, and everything that we do ... Whenever we talk about growth, we always talk about responsible growth. Every change that we make, we're thinking through the lens of responsibility. And if you look at the number of changes that we've made, it's substantial.
I'm happy to talk about more, in all the different areas, whether it's ... And you have to realize there are many areas. We just touched briefly on child safety. There's misinformation, there's foreign government interference, there's hate. There are many different areas that we're focused on, and we've made a lot of progress. And I want to say there's more progress to be made, I 100 percent acknowledge it.
But we, in the last year, have built very significant teams to be able to address this, and to address it not just from a people standpoint, but, this is a technical audience, from a technical point of view, of building up classifiers and machines to be able to identify problems and remove that content.
So talk about the technical solutions, because that's always been the ... ''AI is going to fix it,'' whatever, and Casey Newton just wrote a great piece in The Verge about Facebook, people who go through Facebook videos, and they all want, the people who watch the conspiracy videos suddenly believe in conspiracies, they're being badly affected, they're having sex in the stairwells, it's like crazy. They watch this stuff and they get warped.
Obviously, humans are not going to be the way you're going to figure this out, but you have to put humans to the test. Talk about this, what could be done.
Well, we have to use humans and machines. And it's the combination of using humans to generate basically what we'll call the golden set or the initial set, the set that our machines can learn from. And then it's the machines that go out and actually extend all this amazing knowledge that the humans have, and to be able to do that at scale.
So we have 500 hours being uploaded every minute to YouTube, and the only way to solve this, at the end of the day, is going to be with a combination of human and machines. And if we actually started releasing a transparency report, and if you look at the transparency report, you can see how the machines have ramped up in the last year. And in Q ... we're about to release Q4 report, but in Q3, we removed over... almost 8 million videos. And of those, 75 percent of them were removed with machines, and of that 75 percent the majority didn't even have a single view. And so that shows you that when you can do this at scale, it really makes a difference.
But recommendations, for example, we just made a change to how we handle recommendations, where we have readers, the readers go through '-- we make sure they're representative from all parts of the US, we publish the guidelines '-- those readers then identify a set of videos that they think are, could be, they might technically meet the requirements of following our community guidelines, but they're close. And there's a lot of content that, there's 1 percent that brushes up against the community guidelines. So what we do is we identify this with, a set of them, with humans, and then we use machines and machine learning to expand, and based on that then we are basically very unlikely to recommend that.
I'll get to recommendations, I have a personal beef with you about that.
Okay. I can't wait to hear.
My son, who is 13 years old, started watching Ben Shapiro videos. And he's like the gateway drug to the next group. And then it goes right to Jordan Peterson, then it goes down and in three clicks he was in Neo-Nazi stuff. It was astonishing. And then I had to listen to it at dinner. And I was sort of like, ''I'm going to kill Susan Wojcicki first.''
Okay. Here I am.
But it was sort of like, I was sort of like, it feels like, as I said, I think you've heard me say this, it feels like all you tech companies have built cities, these beautiful cities, but you decided not to initially put in police, fire, garbage, street signs, and stuff like that, and so it feels like The Purge every night. It's a good joke, but it is, I'm sort of like, and then I've got this kid who's like, ''Well Ben Shapiro's sort of smart.'' I'm like, ''No he's not! Not even slightly! He's clever but he's an idiot.''
Anyway, it's just exhausting. But it has a huge effect on him. Do you feel like the people, on a bigger thing '-- and it's not your total responsibility, Susan '-- but do you feel like the people in Silicon Valley have a sense of this, of the impact they have, and are capable of dealing with it? Or will regulatory measures just have to come into place? Because it's already starting in Europe, it's starting in California here with privacy bills, do you feel like you're all able to do that?
We have already made a huge difference, and we will continue. And that will have a big impact on how our platforms work. And we actually use this analogy of a city too, where we feel that we were initially starting out as a smaller city, and people kind of all knew each other on the internet, and then very quickly, we grew to this major metropolitan city. And our goal is, we've really ramped up, Google has committed to having 10,000 people committed to dealing with controversial content, which we staffed last year. We have tightened our guidelines, we have made very significant changes in how we handle our policies, like the recommendations.
So getting to your son ...
He's lost.
No, we can work on your son here, I have a son too and I get some of these discussions also at the dinner table. I think what you're describing is '-- and the way we think about it, too '-- look, there's a set of content that has to meet the community guidelines. Ben Shapiro is going to meet the community guidelines. I don't think you're suggesting that we remove him from the platform. Are you?
I would, but I can't. No, no.
You know, last time I saw you, I was like, ''Get Alex Jones off that platform,'' and you're like, ''Well the community guidelines,'' and then you got him off.
No, he's not on the platform.
So I was right, but ...
It was the terms of service, actually.
I was the terms of service. He broke the terms of service.
He broke our terms of service, yes.
But what I mean is, I'm getting to the larger picture, and then I do want to get to issues around diversity and other things.
Do you feel like you all have the capabilities? Because it sometimes feels like, again, it's a small group of people that's deciding on a large ... is there enough diversity, is there ... within your management structure to do that, to make these decisions?
Well, diversity is a huge and important part of YouTube, and that's what I love about YouTube is the fact that we've been able to tell so many stories. And that's why in many ways we want to make sure that we're protecting the freedom of speech but also enforcing the community guidelines at the same time. And I do think we'll make very significant progress. I think we have made significant progress, and we will continue to do that.
I'm talking about in your management structure, do you feel like, you all live in a zip code of Palo Alto or whatever, do you feel like there's ...
No, actually half of YouTube lives in San Francisco.
Well, that's good.
But do you feel like there's been enough ... I mean, for a long while, Susan, it was you and Sheryl [Sandberg] that were it.
Yeah. Well, so actually I just ran some stats before we ...
That's just women. I'm not talking about people of color and different ages and ...
Sure. I think it's incredibly important. I just looked at my management team, and I've been really focused on diversity at YouTube and bringing more leaders and more women and more people of color and underrepresented minorities to YouTube, I 100 percent agree this is essential. And I'm saying it from many perspectives. I think it's important from a business perspective, because to have that point of view of representing everyone and understanding, and drawing the best talent.
I just looked at my management team. So when I got there, the number of directors at YouTube was about 15 percent in terms of women. Now, it is double, around 30 percent. So I'm not saying that we're at 50 percent, which like, women are 50 percent of the population, but in my leadership, that number has doubled.
What about the rest of the ...
But how do you press that at the rest of Google, because here you are doing this, and I want to also get to people of color, and ...
Well, YouTube is going to keep growing.
So my goal is, I think YouTube is a company within Google, and so the goal for me is to think about how do I, and I have control of YouTube as a CEO, so my goal is let's make YouTube really diverse, and show what it is to have a diverse tech company, and then deploy different techniques, whether it's bringing in people who are supporting underrepresented communities, increasing our recruiting at colleges we might not have gone to beforehand, just making sure that it is a really inclusive place and the people that are there feel supported. And that also leaves a pathway for other tech companies, it leaves a pathway for Google, etc.
Now you've been around a long time, do you think it's changed a lot? Because it doesn't feel like it has. I mean, let's be honest.
I think it has changed.
Actually I think you've been helpful in changing it.
Yes, I know that, but I ... I can only say, ''You fucking assholes'' so many times before it loses ...
That's helpful.
It's helpful, but at some time, do you imagine it shifting? Because whenever I feel like it has, it feels like I see the same group of people. And want happens is, I think for example at Facebook, so I'll use another company, because I think you're a more obstreperous group at Google, the cohesion within the group at Facebook led directly to what has happened there. They always ragged about getting along, and I was like, ''Well, who's the pain in the ass here?'' and they did say, ''You, Kara,'' but I don't work there, and I'm not a billionaire either. So what has to change within tech to do that?
Well, I wrote this Vanity Fair piece called, ''Breaking up the Silicon Valley Boys Club.'' And the first point I made was, it needs to come from the CEO level. And I've really seen, the CEO has to make it a priority. They have to say, ''This really matters, I'm going to give it the resources, I'm going to meet with the underrepresented groups, I'm going to focus on having a diverse management team.''
I realize I've been at Google for 20 years, right? And so, I think when I first started, if I compare it to now in today's world, I think, A) there's much more focus on how diversity really matters from a business standpoint, I think the technology is more diverse, like we see it reaching more people, and I also think the culture of any kind of discrimination or sexism, people are much more aware of that and much less willing to tolerate it, I think on both sides, both men, women, leadership, and employees. I think part of that has been, sadly, we've had #MeToo and all these different examples of companies that have not done a good job, and that has been really ...
Including Google.
Yes, including Google. But I'll say the positive ... Although these were very negative events, and I'm so sad when I see that they happen, but the positive is it's raised awareness of how companies cannot operate this and the consequences if they do. That is really important, to bring awareness that this is just not acceptable behavior in Silicon Valley.
All right. We're going to finish up talking about ... I don't have a timer here so I don't know the minutes, but if someone has ... There's no timer here so I can just keep going on. Two things I want to talk about, disinformation and regulation and the Google walkout. These are three things I want to get to.
Okay. Okay, great.
So the Google walkout, there's people here ... I did a great podcast with a bunch of them. How did you see that within Google among the top ... You're on the top management team at Google. You've just ended forced arbitration, correct?
Yes. Yes.
How did you look at that? Do you think ...
First of all ...
How many people here are from Google that were part of that? Do you all realize it's a bigger deal or you were like, ''It's just some noisy employees?''
No, no. It was a big deal. It was a big deal. First of all, seeing the news was really upsetting. I think that was the sentiment of the entire management team, that it was really upsetting. The way I approach things is, ''How can we make things better?'' What I appreciate about Google is that we saw that people said, ''I want to make this a better company. I'm upset. I want to go. I want to make change. I'm asking for change.'' That means that it's a company that people care about and that they want to make it a better place. So as a management team, we wanted to give people the leeway to tell their stories, to hear what wasn't going well. We said, ''Sure, if people want to go to the walkout, they should go to the walkout, and we're going to listen to the stories, and we're going to listen about how we can do better.''
I don't want to say that everything is solved. It's not. Right? There's always going to be more to do. But if you look at the changes that we made really quickly, there were a lot of changes that were made quickly. The changes were, first of all, we started with not having forced arbitration around sexual harassment. That was the first change. We revamped the process of how it's reported. I think people told their stories. And even though we had a process, we realized that process can be better and we made different changes there. We said we would report on it. We said, ''Let's have mandatory training.'' We renewed our commitment to diversity. And there's more. There's ongoing work.
All right. Will you all, do you think, do you imagine, I know you're not the person in charge of this, put an employee on the board of Google?
Yeah, so I'm not the person in charge of this.
Will you advocate for it? Do you think it's a good idea?
Eh, I mean, I don't know enough. I have never been on a board where there's a employee.
No, it's all white guys. I know.
No, there's diversity.
Your board is pretty good. Your board is ...
Our board is pretty good. I'm also on the board of Salesforce and I think they have really good diversity there. That's been great to see and great to see that commitment. So I don't know. I mean, I'm not on the board and ...
What do you think about the idea of an employee on the board?
Well, it depends who the employee is, right? I mean, I'm an employee. I think it matters who the employee is. I think it's to make ... I mean, boards usually review plans. They don't necessarily come up with a plan to be able to make that change. So I think having focus at the Google level, at the Alphabet level, and as the team has currently been doing, is probably the right place to be able to be able to make a lot of change. I don't want to say there aren't benefits of having employee ... I don't know. I've never been on a board with an employee, so I don't ... I just don't know enough about that.
The last thing '-- I'm not going to be able to get to privacy because I've got a short amount of time '-- is contractors.
Contractors, yes.
Contractors around '... This is important to, a lot of people here are contractors.
Yes, yes, yes. We have temps, contractors, and vendors, TVCs.
Should they be treated the same way and not be these sort of second-class citizens of Silicon Valley? It's increasing in employment, not just at Google, but everywhere.
Yeah, yeah. Yeah. First of all, the company, and many companies in Silicon Valley, need to employ TVCs to be able to scale and to be able to ramp up to an expertise that the company itself may not have. Right? That could be anything from the bus drivers and people who are, I don't know, working across security ...
Yeah, and...
... or are lawyers who are advising us on very complicated areas where we don't have full expertise. It's a broad range of expertise that we have there.
We do have a supplier code of conduct. We want to make sure that all of the suppliers are implementing and treating the people that we employ, and that when we do employ them, that they meet a certain level in terms of our supplier code of conduct. I think that is a really important leverage point to make sure that that causes them as a vendor to make sure that they're meeting those right requirements, to make sure that the TVCs, the temps, vendors, and contractors that we're hiring, are getting fair and great working conditions.
All right. Do you believe Silicon Valley, this is the year of reckoning? This is my last question. This sort of has been a year of reckoning. Do you feel like the leaders get it? You know, I've always said to you, and I think you agree with me, that Silicon Valley has always been a mirror-tocracy rather than meritocracy. Do you believe they get it, that perhaps they did not hang the moon and they really do have to make these serious changes? Do you think that, since you're at the very top of it?
I think they get it. I mean, it's been a year where we have been ... I think any good leader needs to step back and say, ''How can we do this better?'' There was a period of time where I ... I'd say maybe this was two years ago, where we just said, ''Look, something has to change here and we have to make a change.'' I went to my team and we said, ''Look in our what we call trust and safety area and how we handle this from a product standpoint. We need to have senior people. We need to have dedicated teams and they need to be big teams with the best people on them. We have to have 100 percent commitment to responsibility and to solving these challenges.''
I've been now for 20 years at Google and these have been hard years. These have not been easy years. We have a lot of challenges and they tend to always happen when someone is out or when we're on vacation. But it doesn't matter. You have to come back, wherever you are in the world. You need to be there. You need to be on it. We've been working around the clock to solve these issues. I'm not saying we're done. I'm not saying we've solved everything. But we have 100 percent commitment to solve them. That commitment will lead to progress and that will lead to better products for everybody and I'm committed to doing it.
Great. Susan Wojcicki. [applause]
Okay. Thank you. Thank you.
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VIDEO - Smart City | Sustainability | City of San Diego Official Website
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 12:09
Technology for Good - San Diego as a Smart CityThe City of San Diego invites you to learn about data being generated by our new streetlight sensors, what it can and can't do, how privacy is being protected, and collect ideas from our residents and businesses on how to improve the system.What: A community meeting about data and technology in the City.
Where: Malcolm X Library Multipurpose Room, 5148 Market St, San Diego, CA 92114
When: Wednesday March 13, 2019, 5:30-7pm
Who: Citizens with an interest in data, technology, app development, etc.
With what began as a cost-savings effort to replace high energy use streetlights with more efficient LED lights, the City of San Diego is now deploying the world's largest smart city sensor platform. The system is transforming the City's existing street lighting infrastructure into a connected digital infrastructure which will lead to energy savings and new technological opportunities.
The anonymous data collected by the sensor nodes can be used to develop applications and systems that benefit the City and the community. These sensor nodes generate metadata (static data on parking, vehicle counts, pedestrian counts, temperature, humidity, pressure). The nodes connect to technology partner GE's CityIQ cloud database to make the metadata collected by the sensors available. This open data platform possibilities range from pedestrian safety and directing drivers to open parking spaces to mobility planning and optimization, to helping first responders during an emergency and urban and real estate development planning. Our hope is that new applications will be built using this technology to help improve city services and initiatives.
How to Access the Metadata for Community Innovators and Other Interested Parties
Anyone who would like to access metadata (static data on parking, vehicle counts, pedestrian counts, temperature, humidity, pressure) from the City's intelligent streetlight sensors may use the publicly available application programming interface (API) key. The API key, along with a client (e.g., user) manual and other relevant information, is available below.
To begin using the APIs, please review the GE End User License Agreement (EULA) by clicking on the following link and providing the credentials listed below. Id: PublicAccess*Client Secret: y*6*r9JRkbq2tq*Please note that the Client Secret will be changed and re-posted here every 3 months. If you are a developer or would like longer-term access, please contact [email protected] for an individual API key.
To obtain CityIQ API documentation please visit
To learn more about CityIQ visit
A Note on Privacy
While this project is a tremendous technological benefit to the city and our citizens, we recognize and value the importance of privacy. Raw video and image data are not accessible to general city staff or any members of the public. These raw data are only retained by GE locally on the sensor (not in their cloud database) for 5 days then overwritten/deleted. The primary purpose of video and image information is to be used by a software program to generate metadata such as vehicle counts. Special and limited access to video/image data exist exclusively for the San Diego Police Department. Authorized personnel in SDPD may request access to specific video/images within the 5-day period at the discretion of the Chief of Police for criminal investigations only.
See below for the current privacy policy ensuring general City staff do not access or share video or image data. As this is a new frontier in the technology world and in the city operations world, we expect to evolve this policy as we receive input from users of the metadata and citizens.
What Metadata Looks Like to Users
The image below is how all publicly available metadata appear.
Further Information
View the Department Instruction restricting the use of sensor data. Information on the City of San Diego Open Data Policy - more about what makes San Diego such a SMART City!
Making San Diego the World's Smartest CityIntelligent Lighting in San Diego
"Fostering innovation and improving infrastructure are important to enhancing the lives of all San Diegans. This new technology will give the City and developers the opportunity to make our neighborhoods safer and smarter."
San Diego Mayor Kevin L. Faulconer
Intelligent Sensors Approximately 4,200 intelligent sensors are being installed to transform the City's streetlights into smart infrastructure that will help optimize traffic and parking, plus enhance public safety, environmental awareness and overall livability for San Diego residents. View interactive map of all Smart Streetlight locations.
These intelligent nodes can see, hear and feel the heartbeat of a city. The node connects city officials and citizens to real-time data, allowing for endless applications. From easier parking and decreased traffic congestion, enhanced public safety and environmental monitoring, enhanced bicycle route planning, to enhanced urban and real estate development planning, this platform can improve the quality of life in our city and boost economic growth.
Energy Efficient Outdoor Lights In addition to the intelligent sensor installation, approximately 25 percent of San Diego's outdoor lights will be upgraded to reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. The City of San Diego has retrofitted approximately 38,000 light fixtures with energy efficient lighting of which, 3,500 are currently equipped with advance lighting control systems. In addition, the City is installing another 14,000 new Adaptive Control LED fixtures across the city in 2018, which is expected to save San Diego an estimated $2.8 million per year in energy costs that can be invested back into other uses such as maintaining our roads and parks. It also reduces night sky impact and uplighting by at least 90 percent.
Each fixture comes equipped with an advanced controls system called LightGrid which allows city managers to dim, brighten and check maintenance on the lights remotely to reduce energy waste and maintenance costs.
The projects are paid for using energy savings, rebates, federal grants, the State of California, and private, low interest financing.
Benefits By installing a network of energy-efficient LED lights equipped with sensor technology and advanced controls, the City will utilize more accurate data collection to develop services and policies to improve the quality of life for residents and businesses. The data collected by the intelligent outdoor network is aggregated to illustrate trends and provide insights with Machine to Machine learning and Internet of Things. No personally identifiable information is collected. The City and private developers can only use the data for purposes such as improving traffic, parking, pedestrian use, cyclist navigation and weather.
The program will lead to a safer and vibrant city because the City's new digital smart city infrastructure is a highly innovative approach that provides a multi-application, horizontal platform for solving challenges in public safety, emergencies, pedestrian safety, mobility, economic development and much more.
Cost SavingsThe Intelligent Outdoor Lighting Project makes San Diego one of America's most energy-efficient cities and saves $2.8 million in annual energy costs due to the more efficient lighting.
The City will avoid or minimize future costs of installing one-off point solutions i.e. in-ground parking sensors, pedestrian detection infrared, inductive loop surveillance at intersections, CCTV video cameras, and more.
In the long term, the compounding app economy, cost avoidance for single-purpose technology deployment, real-estate development planning models, and small businesses and retail store location optimization tools have the potential to bring increased revenue and jobs to the region.
Potential Future Applications:Improved Parking
The City of San Diego's smart city digital infrastructure will make it easier for residents to find parking, higher utilization of parking spots, and streamlined parking management. Based on experiences with prior deployments of similar technology solutions, the City expects a 40 percent reduction in time spent looking for parking
Improved Traffic Flow
San Diego's smart sensors will provide valuable data to enhance traffic flow. Studies conducted by application providers indicate that there's potential to improve traffic by 10-20 percent by optimizing city management of traffic and providing en-route guidance improvements. Less traffic also means lower greenhouse gas emissions. The impact of this is significant, and reduced traffic will improve air quality and associated health and productivity benefits.
Bike Lanes
Bicycle data will help planners ensure they are building bike lanes where needed to enhance mobility throughout the city. In addition, traffic has a significant correlation to real estate prices and improved traffic should lead to higher real estate values in a number of San Diego neighborhoods.
Improved Public Safety
In the long run, San Diego's smart city sensors are expected to act as a deterrent to crime as the prevalence of optical and audio sensors has been shown to directly impact public safety. Video data from digital smart city infrastructure will make it easier to identify, and, therefore, arrest criminals. Similar technology has been applied in many other cities across the nation, with the median reduction in gunshots recorded as 20 percent across cities that saw reductions.
New App Creation
Real-time sensor data will be open to app developers with a goal of creating apps that solve specific challenges from City departments such as transportation, police, economic development, public works, and more, as well as to make lives better for San Diego residents, visitors and business owners. More than 40 such apps were created in 2017 without access to the valuable data that will be created by this program.
The Intelligent Outdoor Lighting Project is based on an open platform, meaning it collects and makes data available to private software developers who can innovate new solutions to residents and businesses challenges, not the City, which is more efficient and a better use of taxpayer dollars.
No personally identifiable information is collected so the City and private developers only have access to data such as traffic, parking, pedestrian use, cyclists and weather
Data Asset ValueWhile economic uses of this type of data are difficult to ascertain, some clear use cases that generate significant value are made possible by the data. For example, improved crime data will allow insurance companies to improve their risk modeling and accurate foot traffic data will improve retail real estate pricing and outdoor advertising optimization. It is expected that the value of these entirely new types of data sets will be large in volume and wide in scope.
Ordinances Ordinance Number O-20186
Ordinance Number O-20235
Article 2: General Development Regulations
Part 7: Street Lighting and Traffic Signal Systems, Section 700 - Materials
NewsNational Geographic Channel's Worlds Smart Cities: San DiegoGCN - San Diego preps largest smart city platform
Digital Trends - From EV fleets to LED streetlights, San Diego is America's premier smart city
Forbes - San Diego Aims to Set the Pace for Smart City Networks
VIDEO - Joe Rogan Experience #1245 - Andrew Yang - YouTube
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 12:01
VIDEO - News Brief: FAA Grounds 737 Max, Mueller Team Member Leaves : NPR
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 11:40
News Brief: FAA Grounds 737 Max, Mueller Team Member Leaves The FAA has grounded all Boeing 737 Max aircraft in the U.S. as investigators probe the cause of the crash in Ethiopia. Also, new information suggests the special counsel's investigation is done.
News Brief: FAA Grounds 737 Max, Mueller Team Member Leaves Download Embed <iframe src="" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
The FAA has grounded all Boeing 737 Max aircraft in the U.S. as investigators probe the cause of the crash in Ethiopia. Also, new information suggests the special counsel's investigation is done.
VIDEO - Michael Daley backs student strike on climate action | Sky News Australia
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 11:39
13/03/2019 | 5min
NSW Opposition leader Michael Daley says the school strikes on climate action on March 23 are an opportunity for students to 'realise their own personal power'.Mr Daley says the message from school children needs to be heard by 'grownups', to listen to their disappointment and criticism of 'our lack of leadership'. Liberal Democrats candidate for NSW David Leyonjhelm says the government should not be involved with trying to do anything about climate change, as the rest of the world is increasing their emissions more than Australia.
VIDEO - City Journal's 10 Blocks: Victor Davis Hanson on Trump
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 03:58
City Journal's 10 BlocksCity Journal's 10 Blocks, a weekly podcast hosted by editor Brian C. Anderson, features discussions on urban policy and culture with City Journal editors, contributors, and special guests. Forthcoming episodes will be devoted to topics such as: predictive policing, the Bronx renaissance, reform of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, homelessness in Portland, Oregon, and more. City Journal is a quarterly print and regular online magazine published by the Manhattan Institute.
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VIDEO - I'm Not Afraid Of Anyone, Particularly President Trump: Elizabeth Warren | Morning Joe | MSNBC - YouTube
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 03:57
VIDEO - Exchange between Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Wells Fargo CEO (C-SPAN) - YouTube
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 03:55
VIDEO - All-American Male on Twitter: "@adamcurry better snap these sound bytes up...!'... "
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 03:52
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VIDEO - What does bomb cyclone mean? Is this Colorado blizzard a bomb cyclone?
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 03:43
According to 9NEWS, the combination of snow and wind is going to make travel 'extraordinarily difficult' 9NEWS, Fort Collins Coloradoan
Editor's note: This weather story has been made free for everyone to view as a public service. To support the work of the Coloradoan, and to ensure we can keep providing this service in the future, subscribe today.
We updated this story at 10 a.m. Wednesday as atmospheric pressure shifted and today's blizzard reached "bomb cyclone" status.
As a powerful blizzard heads to Colorado on Wednesday, people have started calling it a "bomb cyclone." Are they right?
A bomb cyclone is an actual meteorological phenomenon that describes a storm with plummeting atmospheric pressure. We have a bomb cyclone on our hands when pressure drops by 24 millibars in 24 hours, which has officially happened at both Denver International Airport and Northern Colorado Regional Airport.
Colorado Public Radio devoted a whole website to answering the bomb cyclone question. The station is updating the page every 5 minutes.
Low-pressure storms like this are rare in Colorado and known for creating fierce winds and intense snowfall.
Fort Collins, Loveland, Hereford and Nunn are under a blizzard warning from 10 a.m. to midnight. The National Weather Service predicts 5 to 10 inches of snow and wind gusts up to 75 mph in the warning area.
The weather service advises travels across Colorado's mountains and eastern plains consider canceling their plans because conditions will "deteriorate quickly" late this morning or early afternoon.
Road closures, power outages and extensive tree damage are all likely today.
'–ºNorthern Colorado snow closures: CSU, Poudre and Thompson school districts cancel school on Wednesday
'–ºHere's which Fort Collins streets will be plowed first when it snows (and other snow tips)
'–ºMap: Tell us how the road conditions are in your Fort Collins neighborhood
Jacy Marmaduke covers environment and other topics for the Coloradoan. Follow her on Twitter @jacymarmaduke. Support stories like this one with a digital subscription to the Coloradoan.
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VIDEO - Lisa Page transcripts reveal details of anti-Trump 'insurance policy,' concerns over full-blown probe | Fox News
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 13:58
House Judiciary Committee Republicans on Tuesday released hundreds of pages of transcripts from last year's closed-door interview with ex-FBI attorney Lisa Page, revealing new details about the bureau's controversial internal discussions regarding an ''insurance policy'' against then-candidate Donald Trump.
Page first entered the spotlight in December 2017, when it was revealed by the Justice Department inspector general that she and then-FBI Special Agent Peter Strzok exchanged numerous anti-Trump text messages. The two were involved in the FBI's initial counterintelligence investigation into Russian meddling and potential collusion with Trump campaign associates during the 2016 election, and later served on Special Counsel Robert Mueller's team.
Among their texts was one concerning the so-called "insurance policy." During her interview with the Judiciary Committee in July 2018, Page was questioned at length about that text -- and essentially confirmed this referred to the Russia investigation while explaining that officials were proceeding with caution, concerned about the implications of the case while not wanting to go at "total breakneck speed" and risk burning sources as they presumed Trump wouldn't be elected anyway.
Further, she confirmed investigators only had a "paucity" of evidence at the start.
Then-Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., kicked off that section of questioning by asking about the text sent from Strzok to Page in August 2016 which read: ''I want to believe the path you threw out in Andy's [McCabe's] office'--that there's no way he gets elected'--but I'm afraid we can't take the risk. It's like an insurance policy in the unlikely event you die before you're 40.''
The former FBI lawyer explained how the FBI was trying to strike a balance with the investigation into the Trump campaign'--which agents called ''Crossfire Hurricane.''
''So, upon the opening of the crossfire hurricane investigation, we had a number of discussions up through and including the Director regularly in which we were trying to find an answer to the question, right, which is, is there someone associated with the [Trump] campaign who is working with the Russians in order to obtain damaging information about Hillary Clinton,'' Page said. ''And given that it is August, we were very aware of the speed and sensitivity that we needed to operate under.''
Page continued that, ''if the answer is this is a guy just being puffery at a meeting with other people, great, then we don't need to worry about this, and we can all move on with our lives; if this is, in fact, the Russians have coopted an individual with, you know, maybe wittingly or unwittingly, that's incredibly grave, and we need to know that as quickly as possible.''
Page explained that the text message reflected their ''continuing check-in'' as to ''how quickly to operate.''
''[W]e don't need to go at a total breakneck speed because so long as he doesn't become President, there isn't the same threat to national security, right,'' Page explained, while saying that if Trump were not elected president, the bureau would still investigate.
''But if he becomes President, that totally changes the game because now he is the President of the United States,'' Page told lawmakers. ''He's going to immediately start receiving classified briefings. He's going to be exposed to the most sensitive secrets imaginable. And if there is somebody on his team who wittingly or unwittingly is working with the Russians, that is super serious.''
Page made clear, though, that those involved did not think Trump would beat Clinton: ''So this reflects: Let's be reasonable, let's not, you know, throw the kitchen sink at this because he's probably not going to be elected, and so then we don't have quite as horrific a national security threat than if we do if he gets elected.''
Page also spoke to how little information the bureau was starting with, saying the FBI ''knew so little'' about whether the allegations were ''true or not true,'' and had "a paucity of evidence because we are just starting down the path" of vetting the allegations.
She later said that all they needed was an allegation, and claimed ''it is entirely common, particularly in a counterintelligence investigation, that you would only have'--you would have a small amount of evidence'' in launching a probe.
The transcripts were released as Mueller continues his investigation, which Trump assails as a "witch hunt" on a regular basis but could have an impact on where congressional Democrats go with their own investigations -- or whether they pursue impeachment, something House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has come out against for the time being.
Page, who served a short detail on Mueller's team, returned to her post at the FBI in 2017, and ultimately left the bureau in May 2018. Strzok was removed from Mueller's team after the texts were discovered and was reassigned to the FBI's Human Resources Division before being fired in August 2018.
Former FBI Deputy Director McCabe, meanwhile, recently said he did not recall ever discussing the "insurance policy" with Strzok or Page.
VIDEO - #23 China Wants to Dominate the Internet | Dominique Lazanski - YouTube
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 13:14
VIDEO - BNO News on Twitter: "TEXAS: Hacker activated sirens in DeSoto and Lancaster at 2:30 a.m. last night, causing them to wail for up to 40 minutes, officials say"
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 09:50
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VIDEO - Secretary Pompeo Delivers Keynote Remarks at CERA Energy Week
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 09:38
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VIDEO - Department of State on Twitter: "Live now: @SecPompeo delivers keynote remarks at #CERAWeek2019's ''Reshaping the Energy Future'' conference in Houston, Texas."
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 09:38
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VIDEO - Lori Loughlin Once Explained the Importance of Sending Her Kids to College (Exclusive) | Entertainment Tonight
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 09:32
Lori Loughlin always had dreams of sending her children to college.
The Fuller House star -- who, along with her husband, Mossimo Giannulli -- was among over 40 people who were indicted in a massive college admissions cheating scam on Tuesday -- spoke with ET back in 2016 about the importance of furthering her kids' education.
"I want them to be happy," said Loughlin, who shares two daughters, Isabella, 20, and Olivia, 19, with Giannulli. "I want to be supportive of everything they want to do, but I do want them to have somewhat of a normal [life]. Finish out high school, college experience, maybe because I didn't have that, I really want that for them."
"And I also say to them, try to have something else right now, because there's so much crossover in the business," she added. "So try to do something else where you have a little more control over your own destiny. For me, when I started my career, it was always, 'Here's your audition, go in, do the best job you can.' And nine times out of 10 you didn't get the job."
Loughlin continued on, explaining the various interests her daughters had at the time.
"Livie is really interested in beauty and makeup and hopes to have her own makeup line or beauty line one day," she revealed. "Bella loves fashion. I can see her designing something. So I'm just trying to encourage them to have something else."
Last August, Olivia (aka Olivia Jade) posted a video to her YouTube account in which she talked about "all the tea you need to know about me," which touched on everything from boys to college to YouTubers.
"I don't know how much of school I'm gonna attend," she said in the video. "But I'm gonna go in and talk to my deans and everyone, and hope that I can try and balance it all. But I do want the experience of, like, game days, partying'...I don't really care about school, as you guys all know."
After receiving major backlash from viewers, Olivia posted an apology video, titled "I'm Sorry," just a few days later.
"I said something super ignorant and stupid, basically. And it totally came across that I'm ungrateful for college '-- I'm going to a really nice school," she said. "And it just kind of made it seem like I don't care, I just want to brush it off, I'm just gonna be successful at YouTube and not have to worry about school. I'm really disappointed in myself."
As ET previously reported, Loughlin and Giannulli allegedly paid money to have their daughters deemed as recruits for the University of Southern California's crew team, though, according to court documents, they never actually participated in the sport.
Felicity Huffman, star of Desperate Housewives, was also indicted, and a spokeswoman for the FBI confirmed to ET that she was arrested Tuesday morning without incident at her Los Angeles-area home. Meanwhile, there is an arrest warrant out for Loughlin, who was out of town and not at her house when authorities showed up. Huffman is scheduled to appear at U.S. District Court in Los Angeles around 2 p.m. PT on Tuesday afternoon.
Stay tuned to for all the latest updates on the investigation, which the FBI has deemed "Operation Varsity Blues."
Felicity Huffman's Husband, William H. Macy, Once Spoke About the Stress of 'College Application Time'
Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin Among Over 40 Indicted in College Admissions Bribery Scam
Lori Loughlin Reveals the Beauty, Diet and Exercise Secrets That Keep Her Flawless at 53 (Exclusive)
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Wed, 13 Mar 2019 09:24
VIDEO - CSPAN on Twitter: ".@RepAOC @AOC: "So, hypothetically, if there was a leak from the Dakota Access Pipeline, why shouldn't Wells Fargo pay for the cleanup of it, since it paid for the construction of the pipeline itself?" @WellsFargo CEO Timothy Sl
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 03:19
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VIDEO - Caleb Hull on Twitter: "AOC: "Why was the bank involved in the caging of children?" Wells Fargo CEO: "I don't know how to answer that question because we weren't." AOC: "Ok, I'll move on."'..."
Wed, 13 Mar 2019 03:09
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VIDEO - What REALLY Happened to Ethiopian Airlines Flight?ðŸ¤-- - YouTube
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 19:03
VIDEO - NUPLAZID TV Commercial, 'Seeing Things' -
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 17:40
Ad ID: 1986050 60s 2018 ( Active )
Products: NUPLAZID
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About NUPLAZID TV Commercial, 'Seeing Things'Nuplazid is a prescribed oral medication that is intended to treat hallucinations and delusions that are associated with Parkinson's disease when taken regularly as ordered.
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VIDEO - Cher Calls for Laws to Control Men's Bodies: 'Must Be Circumcised, & Show Papers or Penis'
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 15:02
Left-wing pop icon Cher suggested in a recent social media post that women create laws over men's bodies like banning the use of Viagra and giving the death penalty for those men who use massage parlors.''REPUBLICANS BELIEVE THEY'VE GOT GOD GIVEN RIGHT 2 DICTATE WHAT WE DO WITH OUR BODIES,'' Cher exclaimed.
'-- Cher (@cher) March 9, 2019
Cher has been on a roll with deranged social media posts recently. She suggested earlier this month that President Donald Trump supports are child molesters and ''wife beaters.''
'-- Cher (@cher) March 1, 2019
During an event for International Women's Day, the ''I Found Someone'' singer lauded Nancy Pelosi for her work in fighting against ''old white men.''
''Since the day our founding fathers signed the Declaration of Independence, our country has been run almost exclusively by old white men.'' she said.
''Thankfully because of Nancy and other strong women, this is changing.''
VIDEO - Veteran MD Drops Bombshell About 5G Technology Dangers At 5G Hearing - YouTube
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 09:58
VIDEO - SICK! Nancy Pelosi SCOLDS Americans For Being Against Dem Measure Allowing Illegals Right To Vote
Mon, 11 Mar 2019 19:55
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi scolded Americans late last week for being against a Democrat measure that allows illegal aliens the right to vote.
During a press conference in Austin, Texas, Pelosi argued that America must not suppress the vote of newly arrived legal immigrants, including those who arrive in caravans at the U.S.-Mexico border.
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Pelosi actually appeared to admit that the Democrats overall immigration goal is to ensure millions of new arrivals who come to the U.S. every year are eligible to vote in America's elections.
''When we talk about newcomers, we have to recognize the constant reinvigoration of America that they are, that we all have been '' our families,'' Pelosi began.
''And that, unless you're blessed to be Native American '' which is a blessing in itself that we respect '' but that constant reinvigoration of hope, determination, optimism, courage, to make the future better for the next generation, those are American traits,'' she added.
She continued: ''And these newcomers make America more American. And we want them, when they come here, to be fully part of our system. And that means not suppressing the vote of our newcomers to America.''
Did you catch that?
Pelosi argued that immigrants, not American citizens, make the nation ''more American.''
VOTER POLL: Should Abortion Be Banned FOREVER?
She went on to argue that these ''newcomers'' should be able to participate in voting, which presumably includes the hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens and border crossers who arrive at the southern border every year.
''We, in California, see people coming from a different direction, but the same welcome. You see them coming, many from the south, southern border, but should be the same welcome,'' Pelosi said.
Her scathing comments came just a few days after she claimed that President Donald Trump being office is like getting kicked by a mule.
While speaking with a local news outlet in Alabama, a reporter asked Pelosi, ''Women across the country were traumatized at the loss for Hillary Clinton. Do you remember what that night was like for you personally?''
''It was like getting kicked in the back by a mule constantly,'' Pelosi said.
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''It was physical'-- it was so unbelievable that not only would Hillary Clinton not succeed in winning, but that Donald Trump would be president of the United States,'' she added.
Pelosi continued, ''I thought that was just impossible to happen. But it did.''
Last week, Pelosi suffered several face spasms and brain glitches when trying to argue that Trump's national emergency declaration is ''unpatriotic.''
URGENT POLL: Does Trump have your vote in 2020?
Aside from something clearly being wrong with Pelosi, her comments on argument that Trump's national emergency declaration being unpatriotic will not sit well with many Americans who want the southern border secured.
Pelosi is completely obsessed with the going after the president and will say whatever she can for attention.
And now she's attacking Americans if they don't support the Democrats obvious plan to allow more illegals the right to vote.
[RELATED: Justice Kavanaugh Stuns Millions '' He's Doing It]
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VIDEO - Sword & Scale on Twitter: "Sword and Scale is coming to an end thanks to @amahnke and @rabiasquared. PLUS episodes will still be regularly released at Here's the full story:"
Mon, 11 Mar 2019 17:08
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VIDEO - Greenpeace Founder: Global Warming Hoax Pushed by Corrupt Scientists
Sun, 10 Mar 2019 23:42
NASA/AFP/Chris LARSENGreenpeace co-founder and former president of Greenpeace Canada Patrick Moore described the cynical and corrupt machinations fueling the narrative of anthropocentric global warming and ''climate change'' in a Wednesday interview on SiriusXM's Breitbart News Tonight with hosts Rebecca Mansour and Joel Pollak. Moore explained how fear and guilt are leveraged by proponents of climate change:
Fear has been used all through history to gain control of people's minds and wallets and all else, and the climate catastrophe is strictly a fear campaign '-- well, fear and guilt '-- you're afraid you're killing your children because you're driving them in your SUV and emitting carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and you feel guilty for doing that. There's no stronger motivation than those two.
Scientists are co-opted and corrupted by politicians and bureaucracies invested in advancing the narrative of ''climate change'' in order to further centralize political power and control, explained Moore.
Moore noted how ''green'' companies parasitize taxpayers via favorable regulations and subsidies ostensibly justified by the aforementioned narrative's claimed threats, all while enjoying propagandistic protection across news media''
And so you've got the green movement creating stories that instill fear in the public. You've got the media echo chamber '-- fake news '-- repeating it over and over and over again to everybody that they're killing their children. And then you've got the green politicians who are buying scientists with government money to produce fear for them in the form of scientific-looking materials. And then you've got the green businesses, the rent-seekers, and the crony capitalists who are taking advantage of massive subsidies, huge tax write-offs, and government mandates requiring their technologies to make a fortune on this. And then, of course, you've got the scientists who are willingly, they're basically hooked on government grants.
When they talk about the 99 percent consensus [among scientists] on climate change, that's a completely ridiculous and false number. But most of the scientists '-- put it in quotes, scientists '-- who are pushing this catastrophic theory are getting paid by public money, they are not being paid by General Electric or Dupont or 3M to do this research, where private companies expect to get something useful from their research that might produce a better product and make them a profit in the end because people want it '-- build a better mousetrap type of idea. But most of what these so-called scientists are doing is simply producing more fear so that politicians can use it to control people's minds and get their votes because some of the people are convinced, 'Oh, this politician can save my kid from certain doom.'
The narrative of anthropogenic global warming or ''climate change'' is an existential threat to reason, warned Moore:
It is the biggest lie since people thought the Earth was at the center of the universe. This is Galileo-type stuff. If you remember, Galileo discovered that the sun was at the center of the solar system and the Earth revolved around it. He was sentenced to death by the Catholic Church, and only because he recanted was he allowed to live in house arrest for the rest of his life.
So this was around the beginning of what we call the Enlightenment, when science became the way in which we gained knowledge instead of using superstition and instead of using invisible demons and whatever else, we started to understand that you have to have observation of actual events and then you have to repeat those observations over and over again, and that is basically the scientific method.
''But this abomination that is occurring today in the climate issue is the biggest threat to the Enlightenment that has occurred since Galileo,'' declared Moore. ''Nothing else comes close to it. This is as bad a thing that has happened o science in the history of science.''
Moore concluded, ''It's taking over science with superstition and a kind of toxic combination of religion and political ideology. There is no truth to this. It is a complete hoax and scam.''
Breitbart News Tonight broadcasts live on SiriusXM Patriot channel 125 weeknights from 9:00 p.m. to midnight Eastern or 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Pacific.
Follow Robert Kraychik on Twitter @rkraychik.

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