753: Office of Suck It Up

Adam Curry & John C. Dvorak

3h 12m
September 3rd, 2015
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Executive Producers: Sir Influence of Sugar City-Order of the Palindrome, Sir Lead, Sir Gene Naftulyev Earl of Texas, Sir James Spitzer Baron of Jamaica Plain

Associate Executive Producers: Sir Nick of the Southside, Suzi Hooyboer, Sir Keith Bradshaw, Steven Schneider

Cover Artist: Sir DH Slammer

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Eight of Diamonds
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 07:07
All 8's are power, but with the 8 of Diamonds, their need for power is in the material realm.The 8 of Diamond people are very independent - at times domineering and exacting. Their sense of balance is naturally directed toward values and material assets, and they usually know when and what to buy, and what it is worth - exactly.
Eight of Diamond are the manifestation of the creative principal, the Sun. They have the ability to overcome all obstacles and conquer all enemies. As a rule, trust and confidence may be freely given them. They are wise guardians of the goods of the dead, and wise conservers of the interests of the living. They will serve honestly and faithfully, often at their own expense.
EIGHT OF DIAMONDS BIRTHDAYS:January 19 (Capricorn), February 17 (Aquarius), March 15 (Pisces), April 13 (Aries), May 11 (Taurus), June 9 (Gemini,) July 7 (Cancer), August 5 (Leo), September 3 (Virgo,) October 1 (Libra)FAMOUS EIGHT OF DIAMONDS:Dolly Parton, Edgar Allan Poe, Paris Hilton, Denise Richards, Sly Stone, Al Green, Thomas Jefferson, Salvador Dali, Martha Graham, Johnny Depp, Ringo Starr, John Huston, Charlie Sheen, Randy Quaid,Jimmy Carter.
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Obamabot Dinner
Dave Stuart - Carolyn - Margot - Mark & Laurie & Tina
Obama did great things, is NPR lying to me?
Bill Clinton left us with huge surplus
Neil Armstrong left a dime on the moon
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Overview | Giant Magellan Telescope
Mon, 31 Aug 2015 22:38
Light from the edge of the universe will first reflect off of the seven primary mirrors, then reflect again off of the seven smaller secondary mirrors, and finally, down through the center primary mirror to the advanced CCD (charge coupled device) imaging cameras. There, the concentrated light will be measured to determine how far away objects are and what they are made of.
The GMT primary mirrors are made at the Steward Observatory Mirror Lab (SOML) in Tucson, Arizona. They are a marvel of modern engineering and glassmaking; each segment is curved to a very precise shape and polished to within a wavelength of light'--approximately one-millionth of an inch. Although the GMT mirrors will represent a much larger array than any telescope, the total weight of the glass is far less than one might expect. This is accomplished by using a honeycomb mold, whereby the finished glass is mostly hollow. The glass mold is placed inside a giant rotating oven where it is ''spin cast,'' giving the glass a natural parabolic shape. This greatly reduces the amount of grinding required to shape the glass and also reduces weight. Finally, since the giant mirrors are essentially hollow, they can be cooled with fans to help equalize them to the night air temperature, thus minimizing distortion from heat.
One of the most sophisticated engineering aspects of the telescope is what is known as ''adaptive optics.'' The telescope's secondary mirrors are actually flexible. Under each secondary mirror surface, there are hundreds of actuators that will constantly adjust the mirrors to counteract atmospheric turbulence. These actuators, controlled by advanced computers, will transform twinkling stars into clear steady points of light. It is in this way that the GMT will offer images that are 10 times sharper than the Hubble Space Telescope.
University of Texas at Austin, International Partners Approve Start of Construction for Giant Magellan Telescope | McDonald Observatory
Mon, 31 Aug 2015 22:36
AUSTIN '-- The Giant Magellan Telescope (GMT) has announced a major milestone recently with 11 international partners including The University of Texas at Austin unanimously approving its construction, securing the future of the project with more than $500 million to begin work on the world's most powerful optical telescope. The decision initiates final design and fabrication of the GMT, which is poised to become the largest optical telescope in existence.
''We are excited to work with 10 other world-class partners to develop a telescope that will address the most important issues in astronomy today,'' said Dean of Natural Sciences Dr. Linda Hicke. A global scientific collaboration, the GMT has institutional partners in Australia, Brazil, Korea, the United States, and in host nation Chile.
GMT is integral to the future of astronomy at The University of Texas at Austin. ''The Giant Magellan Telescope will transform our research and education programs in astronomy, and will complement our facilities at McDonald Observatory in West Texas,'' said McDonald Observatory Director Dr. Taft Armandroff.
The 25-meter telescope aims to be the first of the new generation of extremely large telescopes, with more than six times the collecting area of the current largest optical telescopes in existence. The GMT will enable astronomers to look deeper into space and further back in time than ever before, producing images up to 10 times sharper than those produced by the Hubble Space Telescope. It is expected to see first light in 2021 and be fully operational by 2024.
A ground-based telescope planned for construction at the Las Campanas Observatory in northern Chile, the GMT will give scientists a powerful new tool to better understand how stars and galaxies formed shortly after the Big Bang, to measure the masses of black holes billions of light years from Earth, and to discover planets orbiting other stars in the Milky Way galaxy. It will reveal the faintest objects ever seen in space, including extremely distant and ancient galaxies, whose light has been travelling to Earth since shortly after the Big Bang, 13.8 billion years ago.
''The decision by our partner institutions and the Board of Directors to start construction is a crucial milestone on our journey to making these amazing discoveries through state-of-the-art science, technology, and engineering,'' said Dr. Wendy Freedman of the University of Chicago, former chair of the Giant Magellan Telescope Organization (GMTO) Board of Directors.
The construction approval means work will begin on the telescope's core structure and the scientific instruments that lie at the heart of the $1 billion project.
''The University of Texas at Austin plans to help develop the telescope's high-technology instrumentation,'' Armandroff said.
Early preparation for construction has included groundwork at the mountain-top site at Las Campanas and various stages of fabrication of four of the telescope's seven 8.4-meter (27-foot) primary mirror segments.
Each mirror segment weighs 17 tons and takes one year to cast and cool, followed by more than three years of surface generation and meticulous polishing at the Richard F. Caris Mirror Lab of the Steward Observatory of the University of Arizona in Tucson, Ariz. Taken together, the total light-collecting area of the mirrors will be 25.4-meters (82 feet).
The Giant Magellan Telescope Organization (GMTO) manages the GMT project on behalf of its international partners: Astronomy Australia Ltd., The Australian National University, Carnegie Institution for Science, Funda§£o de Amparo Pesquisa do Estado de S£o Paulo, Harvard University, Korea Astronomy and Space Science Institute, Smithsonian Institution, Texas A&M University, the University of Arizona, the University of Chicago, and The University of Texas at Austin. Funding for the project comes from the partner institutions, governments, and private donors.
Connect with the Giant Magellan Telescope Organization on social media: gplus.to/gmtelescope, twitter.com/GMTelescope, facebook.com/GMTelescope, and visit http://www.gmto.org.
'-- END '--
Note to Editors: To access a video news package including interviews with GMTO partners and b-roll, as well as images and video graphics of the Giant Magellan Telescope, please visit: www.gmto.org/gallery.
Media contacts:
Rebecca Johnson, Press Officer
McDonald Observatory, The University of Texas at Austin512-475-6763
Davin Malasarn, Dir. of External AffairsGiant Magellan Telescope Organization626-204-0529
Science contacts:
Dr. Taft Armandroff, Director
McDonald Observatory, The University of Texas at Austin512-471-3300
Dr. Wendy Freedman, Chair, Board of DirectorsGiant Magellan Telescope Organization773-834-5651
David Stuart (Mayanist) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Mon, 31 Aug 2015 22:03
David Stuart (born 1965) is an archaeologist and epigrapher specializing in the study of ancient Mesoamerica, especially Maya civilization. He is widely recognized for his work in deciphering the Maya hieroglyphic script, starting at a young age. He is currently Schele Professor of Mesoamerican Art and Writing in the Department of Art and Art History at the University of Texas at Austin.
Early lifeEditHe is the son of the archaeologist George E. Stuart and the writer Gene S. Stuart. He spent much of his childhood accompanying his parents on archaeological digs and expeditions in Mexico and Guatemala. He developed a close interest in Maya hieroglyphs and decipherment at a young age, reading scholarly works beginning at age 10. Shortly thereafter he made original contributions to the field and began working closely with the Mayanist Linda Schele. He gave his first scholarly paper at the age of 12, at the 1978 Mesa Redonda.
His work on the decipherment of Maya hieroglyphs led to a MacArthur Fellowship in 1984, at the age of 18. He is the youngest-ever recipient of that award. Stuart has continued to make major contributions in the field of epigraphy, particularly related to the decipherment of the Maya script used by the pre-ColumbianMaya civilization of Mesoamerica. See for example Coe (1992), p. 231 et seq. His insights into the structure and content of Maya hieroglyphic writing was highlighted in the award-winning documentary film "Breaking the Maya Code" (Night Fire Films, 2008).
Stuart received his Ph.D in Anthropology from Vanderbilt University in 1995. At that time he was appointed the Bartlett Curator of Maya Hieroglyphs at the Peabody Museum at Harvard University, and was a Senior Lecturer at Harvard's Department of Anthropology before beginning at the University of Texas at Austin in 2004. Over the years Stuart has conducted field research at numerous archaeological sites, including Coba, Palenque, Yaxchilan, Piedras Negras, Copan, Dos Pilas, La Corona, Calakmul, San Bartolo and Xultun. His work often focuses on the documentation of Maya sculpture and inscriptions. He remains actively engaged as a member of several excavation projects in Guatemala and Honduras.
His publications include Ten Phonetic Syllables (1987), which laid much of the groundwork for the now-accepted methodology of Maya hieroglyphic decipherment. In 2003 he published a volume in the ongoing Corpus of Maya Hieroglyphic Inscriptions series (Peabody Museum, Harvard University), devoted to drawings and photographs of sculpture from Piedras Negras, Guatemala. He co-authored Palenque: Eternal City of the Maya (Thames and Hudson, 2008) with his father, George Stuart. His most recent work, The Order of Days (Random House - Harmony, 2011) explores the important role of time and cosmology classic Maya civilization, while also debunking the 2012 phenomenon claim that the Maya viewed the year 2012 as the end of their elaborate calendar.
Stuart is currently the Director of The Mesoamerica Center at The University of Texas at Austin, which fosters multi-disciplinary studies on ancient American art and culture. He also oversees the activities of the Casa Herrera, UT's academic research center in Antigua, Guatemala, devoted to studies in the art, archaeology and culture of Mesoamerica.
BibliographyEditTen Phonetic Syllables (1987)Piedras Negras, Vol. 9, part 1, in Corpus of Maya Hieroglyphic Inscriptions series (Peabody Museum, Harvard University), 2003, with Ian GrahamPalenque: Eternal City of the Maya (Thames and Hudson, 2008) with George StuartThe Order of Days: The Maya World and the Truth about 2012 (Random House - Harmony, 2011)ReferencesEditExternal linksEdit
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MTV VMA's
Opening airbrushed abs Nikki Menage
ALL MARY JANE SHOW
Kanye speech fucked the recording
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Presidential Proclamation -- National Wilderness Month, 2015
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 18:31
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
August 31, 2015
NATIONAL WILDERNESS MONTH, 2015
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BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
A PROCLAMATION
The beauty of America's wilderness has always been central to our character as a Nation. Our untrammeled lands and waters are part of a rich legacy that is carried forward from one generation to the next, reflecting a spirit of conservation deeply rooted in the quintessential American belief that each of us has an equal share in these special places and an equal responsibility to protect them. Every day, individuals across our country embody this idea by maintaining our trails and parks, working to restore cherished sites, and inspiring communities to preserve the areas they treasure.
Since I took office, I have been committed to protecting the pristine areas that enrich our lives and our country. That is why I have set aside more lands and waters than any other President in our history, including by designating more than 2 million new acres of wilderness. And to ensure our children have the chance to experience the wonder within our protected lands, my Administration launched the Every Kid in a Park initiative, which provides free admission to public lands for all fourth graders and their families -- enabling more young Americans to discover the land with which our Nation has been blessed.
For more than a half-century, the Land and Water Conservation Fund has helped to protect these iconic places and make it easier for families to spend time outside. The Fund has advanced over 40,000 local projects by making critical investments, including in National Parks, baseball fields, battlefields, and community green spaces. I continue to call on the Congress to act to ensure this vital tool of environmental stewardship and community development does not expire by fully and permanently funding the Land and Water Conservation Fund, and as President, I will keep working to make it easier for all families to enjoy our great outdoors no matter where they live.
Our National Parks, wildlife refuges, forests, and public lands are also essential for expanding economic opportunity, creating jobs, and fueling local economies. My Administration is committed to partnering with cities and States to make sure they have the resources they need to protect these outdoor spaces in the face of extreme weather events that imperil our security and the livelihood of our communities. Climate change threatens our lands and waters, as well as the health and well-being of future generations. That is why we have taken commonsense actions to combat climate change, ensure the resilience of our neighborhoods, and protect our natural resources for our children and grandchildren.
During National Wilderness Month, let us recommit to preserving the places that remind us of who we are and of all that our Nation is. Let us renew our resolve to protect America's incomparable natural splendor in our time so it can endure as a birthright of every citizen and shape the lives and dreams of generations to come.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim September 2015 as National Wilderness Month. I invite all Americans to visit and enjoy our wilderness areas, to learn about their vast history, and to aid in the protection of our precious national treasures.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirty-first day of August, in the year of our Lord two thousand fifteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fortieth.
BARACK OBAMA
Presidential Proclamation -- National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month, 2015
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 16:37
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
August 31, 2015
NATIONAL ALCOHOL AND DRUG ADDICTION RECOVERY MONTH, 2015
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BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
A PROCLAMATION
Every day, resilient Americans with substance use disorders summon extraordinary courage and strength and commit to living healthy and productive lives through recovery. From big cities to small towns to Indian Country, substance use disorders affect the lives of millions of Americans. This month, we reaffirm our unwavering commitment to all those who are seeking or in need of treatment, and we recognize the key role families, friends, and health care providers play in supporting those on the path to a better tomorrow.
This year's theme is "Join the Voices for Recovery: Visible, Vocal, Valuable!" It encourages us all to do our part to eliminate negative public attitudes associated with substance use disorders and treatment. People in recovery are part of our communities -- they are our family and friends, colleagues and neighbors -- and by supporting them and raising awareness of the challenges they face, we can help eradicate prejudice and discrimination associated with substance use disorders, as well as with co-occurring mental disorders. Prevention and treatment work, and people recover -- and we must ensure all those seeking help feel empowered, encouraged, and confident in their ability to take control of their future. Americans looking for help for themselves or their loved ones can call 1-800-662-HELP or use the "Treatment Locator" tool at www.SAMHSA.gov.
My Administration remains dedicated to pursuing evidence-based strategies to address substance use disorders as part of our National Drug Control Strategy. Seeking to widen pathways to recovery, our strategy supports the integration of substance use treatment into primary health care settings and the expansion of support services in places such as high schools, institutions of higher education, and throughout the criminal justice system. In the wake of public health crises related to non-medical use of prescription drugs and heroin in communities across our Nation, my Administration has pledged considerable resources to help Federal, State, and local authorities boost prevention efforts, improve public health and safety, and increase access to treatment in communities across the country. And the Affordable Care Act has extended substance use disorder and mental health benefits and Federal parity protections to millions of Americans.
Behavioral health is essential to overall health, and recovery is a process through which individuals are able to improve their wellness, live increasingly self-directed lives, and strive to fulfill their greatest potential. During National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month, we reaffirm our belief that recovery and limitless opportunity are within reach of every single American battling substance use disorders, and we continue our work to achieve this reality.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim September 2015 as National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month. I call upon the people of the United States to observe this month with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirty-first day of August, in the year of our Lord two thousand fifteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fortieth.
BARACK OBAMA
Presidential Proclamation -- National Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month, 2015
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 18:31
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
August 31, 2015
NATIONAL OVARIAN CANCER AWARENESS MONTH, 2015
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BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
A PROCLAMATION
This year, more than 14,000 women will lose their lives to ovarian cancer -- the most deadly of all female reproductive system cancers -- and more than 21,000 of our mothers, daughters, wives, and sisters will be diagnosed with this terrible disease. Every day across our country, families, friends, and communities come together to support and empower those who are fighting for their lives, offering encouragement and bringing hope for a cancer-free future. During National Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month, our Nation pauses to lift up all those who know the pain of this disease, honor those we have lost, and renew our commitment to fighting ovarian cancer through more effective prevention, detection, and treatment.
Ovarian cancer is difficult to detect early -- there is no simple and reliable way to screen for it and symptoms are often not clear until later stages. By recognizing possible warning signs and unexplained changes, women can increase their likelihood of detecting ovarian cancer in its early stages when treatment is most effective and the chances for recovery are greatest. To bolster these efforts, my Administration has continued to invest in innovative research to improve early detection and treatment of ovarian cancer, and we are working hard to increase public awareness among women about all types of gynecological cancers. To learn more about risk factors and symptoms, Americans can visit www.Cancer.gov/Ovarian.
I encourage all women to speak with their health care providers about ovarian cancer. Under the Affordable Care Act, most health plans are now required to cover well-woman visits without copays or deductibles -- providing millions of women with the opportunity to access critical care and talk with health care professionals about risks they may face. Provisions in the law also eliminate annual and lifetime dollar limits on coverage and prohibit insurance companies from denying participation in an approved clinical trial for cancer or another life-threatening disease. The law also forbids insurers from denying coverage due to a pre-existing condition, such as cancer or a family history of cancer.
This month, we stand with all those who continue to fight this devastating disease and with those who have lost loved ones because of it. Along with the advocates, medical researchers, and health care providers who tirelessly battle this disease every day, we rededicate ourselves to the urgent work of increasing awareness and improving care for those with ovarian cancer -- and we continue forging a future free from cancer in all its forms.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim September 2015 as National Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month. I call upon citizens, government agencies, organizations, health care providers, and research institutions to raise ovarian cancer awareness and continue helping Americans live longer, healthier lives.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirty-first day of August, in the year of our Lord two thousand fifteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fortieth.
BARACK OBAMA
Presidential Proclamation -- National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, 2015
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 17:09
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
August 31, 2015
NATIONAL CHILDHOOD CANCER AWARENESS MONTH, 2015
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BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
A PROCLAMATION
Pediatric cancer affects thousands of young Americans each year. It is the leading cause of disease-related death for children, and this year, more than 10,000 of our Nation's youth will be diagnosed with this tragic disease. Every September, America honors all those who have been affected by this life-threatening illness: young girls and boys whose childhoods have been cut short, the loved ones who know the pain pediatric cancer causes, and the communities across our country that rally to support their friends and neighbors during difficult times. As a Nation, we come together to stand with those who have experienced devastating loss, and we renew our commitment to advance research, improve treatment, and ensure a brighter, healthier future for all young Americans.
Over the past 35 years, mortality rates for some types of pediatric cancer have declined by more than 50 percent, and thanks to major advancements in research and treatment efforts, our Nation has significantly improved its understanding and response to this disease. Today, innovative studies are leading to real breakthroughs -- reminding us of the importance of supporting scientific discovery and moving our Nation closer to finding cures. Despite these gains, the specific causes of pediatric cancer remain largely unknown, and much work still remains to be done.
My Administration is committed to advancing the fight against childhood cancer by supporting the vital studies that will continue to build on this progress. Last year, I signed the Gabriella Miller Kids First Research Act, which established the 10-Year Pediatric Research Initiative Fund, and I will keep urging the Congress to continue investing the millions of dollars available in this fund to support medical innovation and life-changing breakthroughs. I was also proud to appoint a pediatric oncologist to the National Cancer Advisory Board earlier this year. And this past January, I announced my Administration's Precision Medicine Initiative, which invests in research to better understand cancer and other diseases, helping the United States lead a new era of medicine -- one that delivers the right treatment at the right moment.
Childhood cancer is devastating, and as families face the enormous burdens it brings, they deserve the security that comes with access to quality, affordable health care. Under the Affordable Care Act, children cannot be denied health insurance due to pre-existing conditions such as cancer. Provisions in the law also eliminate annual and lifetime dollar limits on coverage and prohibit insurance companies from denying participation in an approved clinical trial for cancer or another life-threatening disease.
Pediatric cancer limits the dreams of too many of our Nation's daughters and sons and deprives our country of their enormous potential. During National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, we remember the many children who have been taken from us too soon, and we extend our support to all those who continue to battle this illness with incredible strength and courage. Let us honor those on the front lines -- the health care providers, researchers, community organizations, and advocacy groups -- who work tirelessly to ensure our Nation's youth have every opportunity to grow and thrive, and let us renew our commitment to forging a future free from cancer in all its forms.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim September 2015 as National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. I encourage all citizens, government agencies, private businesses, non-profit organizations, and other groups to join in activities that will increase awareness and prevention of childhood cancer.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirty-first day of August, in the year of our Lord two thousand fifteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fortieth.
BARACK OBAMA
Presidential Proclamation -- National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, 2015
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 18:31
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
August 31, 2015
NATIONAL CHILDHOOD OBESITY AWARENESS MONTH, 2015
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BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
A PROCLAMATION
Five years ago, our Nation came together to put an end to the preventable epidemic of childhood obesity and observed National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month for the first time. Since then, childhood obesity rates have stopped rising, and we have seen an encouraging drop in obesity rates among children ages 2 to 5 years old. Despite this progress, more work remains to ensure every young person can lead a prosperous and productive life -- more than 30 percent of American children are still overweight or obese. This month, we pause to remember our commitment to our Nation's youth and renew our focus on improving the health and well-being of our country's most precious resource.
This year marks the fifth anniversary of First Lady Michelle Obama's Let's Move! initiative, which has partnered with parents, community leaders, and professionals across the public and private sectors to encourage and expand access to the physical activities and nutritious foods that help our kids grow up healthy. Millions of children are now attending schools and day care centers that serve healthier food and ensure kids get the 60 minutes of physical activity a day they need. Across America, city, town, and county governments are supporting these efforts -- building communities where kids can safely walk or bike to school, participate in a summer meal program, or join a local athletic league. And we are proud that our Nation's businesses have joined in the fight by working to create healthier kids' menus at restaurants and cut trillions of calories from the food and beverage products children consume. All Americans can do their part to combat childhood obesity, and I invite everyone to visit www.LetsMove.gov to learn more about our accomplishments and find additional resources on how to help children eat well and stay active.
To solve the problem of childhood obesity within a generation, we must ensure the advances we have made are not reversed, including by upholding science-based nutrition standards for school meals. By improving nutritional quality in federally supported school lunches and breakfasts, we are not only ensuring children have access to the nourishing food they need to make healthy choices and succeed in school, but we are also providing the foundation for a stronger, healthier society. As a Nation, we can expand on this progress by working to make sure the same quality food is accessible to all children at home, no matter who they are or where they live. This will require our country to continue focusing on the local availability and affordability of healthy foods -- an effort I am committed to supporting as President. Additionally, my Administration is fighting to ensure families have opportunities to be active and get outside together, and that is why we launched our Every Kid in a Park initiative, which provides all fourth graders and their families with free access to our National Parks and other Federal lands for an entire year.
During National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month and throughout the entire year, let us each commit to reaching toward a healthy lifestyle so we can serve as examples of healthy eating and active living for our Nation's children. Eliminating childhood obesity will require every American to play their part, and together we can work toward building healthy, active communities where all children can realize their dreams and meet their full potential.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim September 2015 as National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month. I encourage all Americans to learn about and engage in activities that promote healthy eating and greater physical activity by all our Nation's children.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirty-first day of August, in the year of our Lord two thousand fifteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fortieth.
BARACK OBAMA
Presidential Proclamation -- National Preparedness Month, 2015
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 16:39
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
August 31, 2015
NATIONAL PREPAREDNESS MONTH, 2015
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BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
A PROCLAMATION
Every year, communities across our country face emergencies -- from unforeseen natural disasters to deliberate acts -- that test our Nation's grit and challenge us to overcome tragedy. While my Administration is working to keep all Americans safe, each of us can do our part. Together, we can protect our families and help our communities by planning for emergencies and for the unexpected. Every September, we celebrate our Nation's spirit of resilience by rededicating ourselves to the important task of being prepared in the face of any crisis.
Emergencies come in many forms -- from house fires to accidents to hurricanes -- and can strike anywhere in America. We cannot always control how, when, or where they occur, but we can prepare practical responses before disasters strike. By discussing with our families, friends, and neighbors how we will protect ourselves and our communities, we can contribute to and share in a stronger, more resilient society. The theme of this year's National Preparedness Month is "Don't Wait. Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today." This month, I encourage all Americans to bolster their readiness in the event of a crisis. To learn more about the disasters common to where you live, the resources available in your area, and how to prepare, visit www.Ready.gov or www.Listo.gov.
When emergencies happen, our Nation must ensure that communities have the support and resources they need to respond and recover. Since taking office, I have worked hard to expedite the recovery and rebuilding efforts in areas impacted by disaster. As we commemorate the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, my Administration remains focused on addressing the needs of survivors, investing in hard-hit neighborhoods, and ensuring those affected are able to rebuild with greater confidence, optimism, and resilience. My Administration has always been dedicated to coordinating readiness and relief efforts between Federal agencies, organizations, corporations, and local partners -- because together, with a united approach, we can lift up communities and help them emerge stronger.
No challenge poses a greater threat to our future than climate change. Cities along our Eastern seaboard now flood at high tide, and in the West, wildfire season now lasts most of the year. Some communities are parched by the worst drought in generations, while others have been drenched by unprecedented rainfall. Our climate is changing quickly, and it poses a threat to our Nation's safety and security. That is why we must work toward a sound environment today, and why my Administration is committed to pursuing clean energy through initiatives like the Clean Power Plan. Additionally, as part of my Climate Action Plan, we are committed to building infrastructure that can withstand more frequent and powerful natural disasters and to supporting our communities -- including low-income, minority, and tribal communities -- as they prepare for these impacts. Together, by ensuring everyone understands the dangers of climate change and by making responsible choices, we can secure a cleaner, safer world for future generations.
On September 30, people from cities and towns in all corners of our Nation will join with the Federal Government to take action as part of America's PrepareAthon! I urge Americans to make a plan and participate in this important opportunity to increase their own preparedness. During National Preparedness Month, let us all renew our commitment to ready ourselves, our families, and our communities for any challenge.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim September 2015 as National Preparedness Month. I encourage all Americans to recognize the importance of preparedness and work together to enhance our resilience and readiness.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirty-first day of August, in the year of our Lord two thousand fifteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fortieth.
BARACK OBAMA
Presidential Proclamation -- National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month, 2015
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 16:39
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
August 31, 2015
NATIONAL PROSTATE CANCER AWARENESS MONTH, 2015
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BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA A PROCLAMATION
Every year, America pauses to raise awareness of prostate cancer and reaffirm our resolve to defeat it. One of the most common cancers among American men, prostate cancer will kill more than 27,500 of our Nation's fathers, husbands, sons, and brothers this year, and more than 220,000 Americans will be diagnosed with it in 2015 alone. With each diagnosis comes pain and heartache, and for too many it leads to extreme hardship and unimaginable loss. As a country, we stand with all those who are fighting prostate cancer, their families, and every person who knows the challenges it brings, and we renew our commitment to combating this devastating disease.
Decades of innovative research have helped to reduce prostate cancer's mortality through more effective prevention, detection, and treatment. And while the exact causes of prostate cancer remain unknown, medical research has identified well-established risk factors with which men should be familiar, such as age, family history, and race. By working to raise awareness of prostate cancer, we can help men make more informed decisions about their health -- including choices which may help prevent cancer, such as avoiding smoking, maintaining a healthy diet and weight, and exercising regularly. I encourage all men, especially those at higher risk, to speak with a health care professional to learn how prostate cancer could affect them. Everyone can learn more by visiting www.Cancer.gov/Prostate.
My Administration is committed to ensuring that Americans have every opportunity to live long and healthy lives. Cancer should not be a death sentence, nor should it condemn individuals to a life of poverty just because they do not have access to the quality, affordable care they need. That is why we fought so hard for the Affordable Care Act -- a law which has helped more than 16 million uninsured Americans gain the security they deserve. The law also prevents insurance companies from denying coverage due to a pre-existing condition, such as cancer, and it eliminates annual and lifetime dollar limits on coverage that could disrupt prostate cancer treatments.
We will also continue to support the types of groundbreaking research that have made a difference for so many cancer patients. Earlier this year, I announced my plan to invest in research to better understand cancer and other diseases, thereby determining how best to treat each patient. This Precision Medicine Initiative aims to accelerate biomedical discoveries and revolutionize how our Nation combats disease.
During National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month, we honor all those we have lost, and we redouble our efforts to beat prostate cancer once and for all. Together, with our Nation's advocates, medical researchers, health care providers, and all those who have been touched by cancer, let us resolve to continue our work toward a future free from cancer in all its forms.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim September 2015 as National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month. I encourage all citizens, government agencies, private businesses, non-profit organizations, and other groups to join in activities that will increase awareness and prevention of prostate cancer.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirty-first day of August, in the year of our Lord two thousand fifteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fortieth.
BARACK OBAMA
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Experience Texas Wine and Food at Tour de Vin 2015
Thu, 27 Aug 2015 22:47
Tour de Vin 2015 is right around the corner
Twin Liquors at Hancock Center hosted a sneak peek wine tasting event last week for the upcoming Tour de Vin, an annual festival from the Wine & Food Foundation of Texas. Vendors and wineries gave a preview of some of the wines they'll be presenting during Tour de Vin at the Fair Market on September 17th. The pre-tasting event featured mostly California wines, but Tour de Vin will include several wines from Texas and around the world.
Wines that stood out at the pretasting that you'll see at the main event include the 2012 Catena malbec and the trebbiano from Duchman Family Winery. Both have a length that exceeds their price points.
New This Year: Contest and Wine AppTour de Vin pre-tasting event
This year, the Wine & Food Foundation will hold a ''Box or Bottle'' contest at Tour de Vin, and attendees will try to guess a wine's packaging based on taste.
Festival-goers will also have the option to install a wine list application on their smartphones made especially for the event. We've all tasted a wine at least once and thought, ''I have to remember this,'' only to forget the name the next day. This won't be the case after this year's Tour de Vin. The application will help festival-goers remember a wine and find where to find it at Austin stores and restaurants.
This year, the Wine & Food Foundation plans to have booths set up in a manner that not only highlights specific types of wines, but also organizes wines by occasion. For example, birthday wines or weeknight wines will be curated and placed together for tasting.
Texas Wineries to AttendDuchman Family Winery trebbiano and aglianico wines
Texas wineries that will be featured at Tour de Vin include Duchman Family Winery (Driftwood), Fall Creek (Driftwood), Messina Hof (Fredericksburg) and McPherson Cellars (Lubbock).
A representative from Duchman Family Winery attended the pre-tasting event and provided samples of their Trebbiano and Anglianico wines. Duchman has an affinity for Italian grapes and makes wines from Italian grape varieties grown right here in Texas.
Up and Coming Local Chefs to Prepare Exclusive BitesLocal chefs to offer bites during Tour de Vin 2015
Up and coming local chefs will prepare special hors d'oeuvres for Tour de Vin 2015. Chefs who will be preparing this year's vittles include Andrew Wisehart from Gardner and Contigo, Ek Timrerek from Kin & Comfort, Jacob Weaver from Juliet, Jodi Elliott from Bribery Bakery and Joe Anguiano from VOX Table.
Where to Buy TicketsTour de Vin will take place Thursday, September 17, 2015 at Fair Market on East 5th Street. Tickets are on sale online for $70 (members $55).
Beneficiaries of this year's event include Dell Children's Hospital, the Sustainable Food Center and Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Viticulture & Fruit Lab for biological research that protects Texas grapes.
@natalien_n wants to know:
What is your favorite Texas wine?
***We always have unique content on the Austinot, and we love to give things away. You know, like CDs, event tickets and other cool stuff. We only send out our Best of the Austinot newsletter two times/month. It's where we give you a recap of our best articles and give stuff away. Interested? Subscribe to Best of the Austinot here!
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The Zen TV Experiment [adam.nz]
Fri, 21 Aug 2015 13:49
Written by Adbusters in May 2002 and pinched from adbusters.org.How Many of You Know How to Watch Television?''How many of you know how to watch television?'' I asked my class one day. After a few bewildered and silent moments, slowly, one by one, everyone haltingly raised their hands. We soon acknowledged that we were all ''experts,'' as Harold Garfinkel would say, in the practice of ''watching television.''
The purpose of our un-TV experiment was to provoke us into seeing television as opposed to merely looking, and to stop the world as the first step to seeing. Here we engage in stopping the world by stopping the television.
For the experiment, students were asked to watch TV consciously. Insofar as this is sort of ''Zen and the art of TV watching,'' I said to them, ''I want you to watch TV with acute awareness, mindfulness and precision. This experiment is about observing television scientifically, with Beginner's Mind, rather than watching television passively with programmed mind. Ordinarily, if you are watching TV you can't also observe and experience the experience of watching TV. When we watch TV we rarely pay attention to the details of the event. In fact, we rarely pay attention.''
Count the Technical EventsIn this particular experimental odyssey, we are going to be exploring how we subject ourselves on a daily basis to the overwhelming sirens' song of TV entertainment (the great electronic cyclops) and, like Homer's Odysseus, we will need to strap ourselves to the mast''in this case, the mast of counting technical events. For 10 minutes simply count the technical events that occur while you are watching any show. This is a TET or Technical Events Test as Jerry Mander discusses it in Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television. What is a technical event? We've all seen TV cameras in banks and jewelry stores. A stationary video camera simply recording what's in front of it is what I will call ''pure TV.'' Anything other than pure TV is a technical event: the camera zooms up, that's a technical event; you are watching someone's profile talking and suddenly you are switched to another person responding, that's a technical event; a car is driving down the road and you also hear music playing, that's a technical event. Simply count the number of times there is a cut, zoom, superimposition, voice-over, appearance of words on the screen, fade in/out, etc.
Now proceed with these experiments:
Watch any TV show for 15 minutes without turning on the sound.
Watch any news program for 15 minutes without turning on the sound.
Watch television for one half hour without turning it on.
The time requirements in these experiments are extremely important. I would urge you, the reader, to undertake the experiment personally rather than merely going on to read the results.
Anger and Resistance: What's the Meaning of This?!In examining the results of this experiment, one of the first things that consistently comes up is students' anger and resentment at being made to do such a thing''an anger and resentment very different from what comes up, say, in regard to the reading load or the writing requirements of the course. This anger, I think, is quite good and useful''not per se, but insofar as students notice their anger and then inquire into and examine the sources of that anger. For, in studying society, we often unconsciously assume we are studying ''them''''but we are not. We are studying ourselves and we resist that, we dislike that. It makes us uncomfortable and it makes us angry. Socrates wasn't given a medal and a tickertape parade after all. As the Russian existentialist philosopher Shestov said, ''It is not man who pursues truth, but truth man.''
One expression of this anger that comes up repeatedly is ''I wasted 30 minutes of my time.'' Is it possible that this is a very valuable waste of time? Is it possible that ''wasting time'' is a very valuable thing to do in studying society? Pursuing this experience puts us smack in the middle of the infamous Protestant Ethic in a very direct and personal way. We are almost re-creating through verstehen Max Weber's deep intellectual perplexity and fascination with what he saw as Benjamin Franklin's codification of the Protestant Ethic: ''Remember that time is money.'' After some discussion it invariably turns out that all the students admit to having wasted a lot more than a half hour in front of the TV set. So why this anger about watching TV for 30 minutes without turning it on?
Labor in the Mode of RelaxationWhen you turn the TV on, in effect, you turn the world off. The TV is only two feet high or so, yet we are fooled into thinking we are watching life-sized things. How is it that everything on it appears real and life-like?
Technical events produce the illusion of being natural and realistic. They produce the feeling of being non-produced (a good cut is one you don't notice, as the editors say). In the same way, we are unaware that the practice of watching TV is a practice because we have never experienced it as a phenomenon in its own right. Doing the Technical Events Test forces us to notice that watching TV is a practice, an active, ongoing achievement that we accomplish ''for another first time through'' each time. We see what the texture of the experience of watching TV consists of. We are shocked into seeing what it is we've been doing all these years.
Counting the technical events brings about what Thomas Kuhn would call a ''paradigm shift.'' When you focus on the technical events you can't focus on the plot or storyline. You learn very quickly how difficult it is to divide your attention. Either you watch the program or you count the technical events. You are unable to do both at the same time. In terms of the phenomenology of perception, this is a little like the famous demonstration of either seeing-the-vase or seeing-two-profiles, but not seeing both simultaneously in any sustained manner.
In doing the TET, we notice the discrete segments of independent footage that are presented with a rapid-fire quality. As we watch, we, the ''passive'' viewers, apparently put together, synthesize and integrate the scenes: we link, we knit, we chain, we retain the past and anticipate the future. We methodically weave them all together into a coherent narrative. A high-speed filling-in-the-blanks and connecting-the-dots occurs. Our actively synthesizing mind, our labor, goes on while we sit back, relax and absorb. This high-speed integration of often wildly disconnected phenomena (angles, scenes, persons, music) is experienced in the mode of blank and passive absorption. It would seem that our minds are in high gear without our knowing. Mander addresses this pointedly:
This difference between internally generated and imposed imagery is at the heart of whether it is accurate to say that television relaxes the mind.
Relaxation implies renewal. One runs hard, then rests. While resting the muscles first experience calm and then, as new oxygen enters them, renewal.
When you are a watching, absorbing techno-guru, your mind may be in alpha, but it is certainly not ''empty mind.'' Images are pouring into it. Your mind is not quiet or calm or empty. It may be nearer to dead, or zombie-ized. It is occupied. No renewal can come from this condition. For renewal, the mind would have to be at rest, or once rested, it would have to be seeking new kinds of stimulation, new exercise. Television offers neither rest nor stimulation.
Television inhibits your ability to think, but it does not lead to freedom of mind, relaxation or renewal. It leads to a more exhausted mind. You may have time out from prior obsessive thought patterns, but that's as far as television goes. The mind is never empty, the mind is filled. What's worse, it is filled with someone else's obsessive thoughts and images.
TV and the Social Construction of RealityThe Technical Events Test dramatically reveals the functions of the political institution of television in (a) training us to shorten our attention span, (b) making ordinary life appear dull, (C) injecting a hypnotic quality into our ordinary awareness and (d) coercing us into its reality.
Television is the quintessential short-term medium. Like jugglers, television lives for the split second. Its relationship to viewers is measured in tiny fractions. Solemn hierarchies of men and women react to overnight program ratings with something approaching nervous breakdowns, because one percentage point can mean $30 million a year. The result of this manic concern is to design programming that will serve attention-getting rather than the humanistic substance that will stay with the viewer. The ratings race serves the advertisers, not the audience.
It is easier to shorten attention spans and increase distraction than to lengthen attention spans, increase concentration, and calm, quiet and still the mind. There is an old Zen analogy that the way to calm, clear and quiet the mind is similar to the way to clear a muddy pool''not by action, by doing, by stirring it up, but by stillness, by letting it be, by letting it settle itself. The function of TV is to create, maintain and constantly reinforce what''in the Zen tradition''is often called ''monkey-mind.'' The question to ask is: What is the good of a jumpy, volatile, scattered and hyper monkey-mind?
Hypnosis UnlimitedSince the emergence of long-term space flight in orbit above the earth, a new physiological phenomenon has arisen among our astronauts. They found that as a result of long-term weightlessness, some rather drastic physical changes began to occur in their bodies. They experienced a marked and dramatic reduction of muscle size. Even their hearts became markedly smaller. The astronauts also experienced a loss of co-ordination abilities '' such as the ability to focus on and follow moving objects with their eyes. All of this seems to be due to taking the human organism outside the experience of gravity. In order to preserve their earthbound physiology in conditions of weightlessness, astronauts need to do two to three hours of custom-designed exercises per day. Perhaps watching TV produces the equivalent mental condition of weightlessness for the human mind, together with the attending shrinkages and deteriorations. The normal, invisible, all-pervasive pressure of mental gravity, of our ordinary, active, inncessntly thinking mind is suspended when we turn on the television.
Coercing Us Into RealityOur culture and education conspire to condition us, to create a reliance on media to reinforce our actions, feelings and self-perceptions. When we seek media confirmation we acknowledge and assume that our personal experiences are not qualified as reality any longer. We lose the drive to pursue direct experience as well as the drive to participate in co-creating reality. We no longer do, we watch, and reality is someone else's creation. As Todd Gitlin has said, it's not until an event (institution, thought, principle, movement, etc.) crosses the media threshold that it takes on a solid reality for us. Stretched out across our world is the media membrane, over the threshold of which''and only over the threshold''lies legitimate, confirmed reality, and though we don't have to believe what the media tell us, we can't know what they don't tell us.
TV Without SoundJust as Charles Tart talks about us being caught up in a consensus trance, we can talk about a narrative trance, a narrative-consciousness. We have been programmed to become narrative subjects, subjected to the developmental narrative mode, intertwined with the storyline. In the TET we're suspending our narrative consciousness and hence de-stabilizing the narrative subject. We identify not with a character, nor with the omniscient author, but with the camera. During usual viewing, however, our eyes do not see what is actually there because our narrative-trained mind overrides our eyes. We don't see with our eyes, we see with our programming, and we are programmed to see stories. TV programs are made so that we don't notice the ''technical events,'' the details '' so that we don't pay attention. We are programmed to be unaware of the programming, the non-narrative structure and possibilities of that structure. To watch TV programs is to be lifeless and unresisting. This is the state that allows the commercials to take full effect and operate our minds for us.
The Nature of the NewsAs a usual daily routine, only the unusually tragic or triumphant is shown''not the ordinary routines and day-to-day reality of our lives. It is true that the news show has fewer technical events. There is a good reason for this. With fewer technical events the news show appears realistic relative to other shows in the TV environment. Further, it appears super-realistic relative to the commercial shows in this environment. As earlier, we witnessed the joining of technical events in a coherent narrative. Here, we witness the reduction of worldly events into a narrative.
The problem is not that TV presents us with entertaining subject matter, but that TV presents all subject matter as entertaining. This transcends TV and spills over into our post-TV life experiences. TV trains us to orient toward and tune in to the entertainment quality of any experience, event, person. We look for that which is entertaining about any phenomenon rather than qualities of depth, social significance, spiritual resonance, beauty, etc. In this sense TV doesn't imitate life, but social life now aspires to imitate TV.
Further, we become greedy. Not greedy in the traditional sense in reference to material wealth, rather, we experience a greed to be entertained. It's not just a need for entertainment, but a downright greed for entertainment, and it becomes a 24-hour obsession. In the absence of entertainment, we usually entertain ourselves with plans for future entertainment.
As one formula puts it, Media Power = Political Power Squared The TV has shown us that politicians can't be trusted but TV can. That is, according to Joshua Meyrowitz in No Sense of Place, implicit in showing us this about politicians is the message, ''We who are showing you this, the TV, can be trusted.'' We can trust TV, and the institution of TV, to reveal how politicians and the institution of politics can't be trusted.
Discoveries About SelfTV has become such a mechanical friend, such a substitute for social interaction, that one's solitude becomes acutely magnified, doubly experienced and doubly reinforced if one is deprived of its glowing, life-like presence (as if one wouldn't still be alone if it were on). If one is alone in one's room and turns on the TV, one actually doesn't feel alone anymore. It's as if companionship is experienced, as if communication is two-way. We have achieved a new level of isolation, solipsism and withdrawal. ''It's just an object when it's turned off,'' hundreds of students have bemoaned. When it is turned off it more clearly reveals itself as an object, as an appliance''rather than as a friend, a companion. It is shocking after all these years to discover this. Mander captures the phenomenology of the situation well:
Television is watched in darkened rooms '... it is a requirement of television viewing that the set be the brightest image in the environment or it cannot be seen well. To increase the effect, background sounds are dimmed out just as the light is. An effort is made to eliminate household noises. The point, of course, is to further the focus on the television set. Awareness of the outer environment gets in the way'... . Dimming out your own body is another part of the process. People choose a position for viewing that allows the maximum comfort and least motion '... thinking processes also dim. Overall, while we are watching television, our bodies are in a quieter condition over a longer period of time than in any other of life's nonsleeping experiences. This is true even for the eyes '... the eyes move less while watching television than in any other experience of daily life.
Almost every household's living room is arranged around the television set. As a weight room is arranged for weight training, our living rooms are arranged for TV training. The furniture is purposely arranged for the transcendent practice of ''watching TV,'' rather than for the immanent, human practice of communication or interaction. The interior design of the average American living room with its lines of attention, hierarchy, and transcendent TV is very similar to the interior design of the average American church with its transcendent altar, lines of homage and gestures of genuflection.
TV and the Illusion of KnowingMarshall McLuhan says TV opens out onto an electronic global village. It would seem, rather, that it gives us only the illusion of being. It reinforces security by presenting danger, ignorance by presenting news, lethargy by presenting excitement, isolation by promising participation. The media confines reality to itself. And it limits knowledge by giving the illusion of knowledge. In the same way that the most effective way to deflect, diffuse and terminate a social movement is to announce that it has been achieved (the feminist movement must contend with this on an almost daily basis), the most effective way to deflect inquiry is to present it as fulfilled. TV acts in this guise as a thinking presentation device which offers non-experience as experience and not-knowingness as knowing.
In the words of Mat Maxwell, ''Television becomes the world for people'... . The world becomes television.'' The overall and cumulative effect of the media is to heighten our insensitivity to reality. Rather than breaking the chains of ignorance, political domination and illusion in our Platonic cave, something insidiously similar yet different is going on. Instead of actually turning away from the shadows to see the realities, instead of actually leaving the darkness of the cave and going up into the sunlight, we merely watch an image of ourselves doing this, we fantasize about doing it and think it's the same.
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Theodore Kasczinski "Industrial Society and Its Future"
Smith Mundt Act - A reminder that you are living in a Smith-Mudt Act repealed media landscape
NDAA and Overturning of Smith-Mundt Act
The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013 (NDAA) allows for materials produced by the State Department and the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) to be released within U.S. borders and strikes down a long-time ban on the dissemination of such material in the country.[14][15][16]
Propaganda in the United States - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Sun, 21 Sep 2014 15:00
Propaganda in the United States is propaganda spread by government and media entities within the United States. Propaganda is information, ideas, or rumors deliberately spread widely to influence opinions. Propaganda is not only in advertising; it is also in radio, newspaper, posters, books, and anything else that might be sent out to the widespread public.
Domestic[edit]World War I[edit]The first large-scale use of propaganda by the U.S. government came during World War I. The government enlisted the help of citizens and children to help promote war bonds and stamps to help stimulate the economy. To keep the prices of war supplies down, the U.S. government produced posters that encouraged people to reduce waste and grow their own vegetables in "victory gardens." The public skepticism that was generated by the heavy-handed tactics of the Committee on Public Information would lead the postwar government to officially abandon the use of propaganda.[1]
World War II[edit]During World War II the U.S. officially had no propaganda, but the Roosevelt government used means to circumvent this official line. One such propaganda tool was the publicly owned but government funded Writers' War Board (WWB). The activities of the WWB were so extensive that it has been called the "greatest propaganda machine in history".[1]Why We Fight is a famous series of US government propaganda films made to justify US involvement in World War II.
In 1944 (lasting until 1948) prominent US policy makers launched a domestic propaganda campaign aimed at convincing the U.S. public to agree to a harsh peace for the German people, for example by removing the common view of the German people and the Nazi party as separate entities.[2] The core in this campaign was the Writers' War Board which was closely associated with the Roosevelt administration.[2]
Another means was the United States Office of War Information that Roosevelt established in June 1942, whose mandate was to promote understanding of the war policies under the director Elmer Davies. It dealt with posters, press, movies, exhibitions, and produced often slanted material conforming to US wartime purposes. Other large and influential non-governmental organizations during the war and immediate post war period were the Society for the Prevention of World War III and the Council on Books in Wartime.
Cold War[edit]During the Cold War, the U.S. government produced vast amounts of propaganda against communism and the Soviet bloc. Much of this propaganda was directed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation under J. Edgar Hoover, who himself wrote the anti-communist tract Masters of Deceit. The FBI's COINTELPRO arm solicited journalists to produce fake news items discrediting communists and affiliated groups, such as H. Bruce Franklin and the Venceremos Organization.
War on Drugs[edit]The National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign, originally established by the National Narcotics Leadership Act of 1988,[3][4] but now conducted by the Office of National Drug Control Policy under the Drug-Free Media Campaign Act of 1998,[5] is a domestic propaganda campaign designed to "influence the attitudes of the public and the news media with respect to drug abuse" and for "reducing and preventing drug abuse among young people in the United States".[6][7] The Media Campaign cooperates with the Partnership for a Drug-Free America and other government and non-government organizations.[8]
Iraq War[edit]In early 2002, the U.S. Department of Defense launched an information operation, colloquially referred to as the Pentagon military analyst program.[9] The goal of the operation is "to spread the administrations's talking points on Iraq by briefing ... retired commanders for network and cable television appearances," where they have been presented as independent analysts.[10] On 22 May 2008, after this program was revealed in the New York Times, the House passed an amendment that would make permanent a domestic propaganda ban that until now has been enacted annually in the military authorization bill.[11]
The Shared values initiative was a public relations campaign that was intended to sell a "new" America to Muslims around the world by showing that American Muslims were living happily and freely, without persecution, in post-9/11 America.[12] Funded by the United States Department of State, the campaign created a public relations front group known as Council of American Muslims for Understanding (CAMU). The campaign was divided in phases; the first of which consisted of five mini-documentaries for television, radio, and print with shared values messages for key Muslim countries.[13]
NDAA and Overturning of Smith-Mundt Act[edit]The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013 (NDAA) allows for materials produced by the State Department and the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) to be released within U.S. borders and strikes down a long-time ban on the dissemination of such material in the country.[14][15][16]
Ad Council[edit]The Ad Council, an American non-profit organization that distributes public service announcements on behalf of various private and federal government agency sponsors, has been labeled as "little more than a domestic propaganda arm of the federal government" given the Ad Council's historically close collaboration with the President of the United States and the federal government.[17]
International[edit]Through several international broadcasting operations, the US disseminates American cultural information, official positions on international affairs, and daily summaries of international news. These operations fall under the International Broadcasting Bureau, the successor of the United States Information Agency, established in 1953. IBB's operations include Voice of America, Radio Liberty, Alhurra and other programs. They broadcast mainly to countries where the United States finds that information about international events is limited, either due to poor infrastructure or government censorship. The Smith-Mundt Act prohibits the Voice of America from disseminating information to US citizens that was produced specifically for a foreign audience.
During the Cold War the US ran covert propaganda campaigns in countries that appeared likely to become Soviet satellites, such as Italy, Afghanistan, and Chile.
Recently The Pentagon announced the creation of a new unit aimed at spreading propaganda about supposedly "inaccurate" stories being spread about the Iraq War. These "inaccuracies" have been blamed on the enemy trying to decrease support for the war. Donald Rumsfeld has been quoted as saying these stories are something that keeps him up at night.[18]
Psychological operations[edit]The US military defines psychological operations, or PSYOP, as:
planned operations to convey selected information and indicators to foreign audiences to influence the emotions, motives, objective reasoning, and ultimately the behavior of foreign governments, organizations, groups, and individuals.[19]
The Smith-Mundt Act, adopted in 1948, explicitly forbids information and psychological operations aimed at the US public.[20][21][22] Nevertheless, the current easy access to news and information from around the globe, makes it difficult to guarantee PSYOP programs do not reach the US public. Or, in the words of Army Col. James A. Treadwell, who commanded the U.S. military psyops unit in Iraq in 2003, in the Washington Post:
There's always going to be a certain amount of bleed-over with the global information environment.[23]
Agence France Presse reported on U.S. propaganda campaigns that:
The Pentagon acknowledged in a newly declassified document that the US public is increasingly exposed to propaganda disseminated overseas in psychological operations.[24]
Former US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld approved the document referred to, which is titled "Information Operations Roadmap." [22][24] The document acknowledges the Smith-Mundt Act, but fails to offer any way of limiting the effect PSYOP programs have on domestic audiences.[20][21][25]
Several incidents in 2003 were documented by Sam Gardiner, a retired Air Force colonel, which he saw as information-warfare campaigns that were intended for "foreign populations and the American public." Truth from These Podia,[26] as the treatise was called, reported that the way the Iraq war was fought resembled a political campaign, stressing the message instead of the truth.[22]
See also[edit]References[edit]^ abThomas Howell, The Writers' War Board: U.S. Domestic Propaganda in World War II, Historian, Volume 59 Issue 4, Pages 795 - 813^ abSteven Casey, (2005), The Campaign to sell a harsh peace for Germany to the American public, 1944 - 1948, [online]. London: LSE Research Online. [Available online at http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/archive/00000736] Originally published in History, 90 (297). pp. 62-92 (2005) Blackwell Publishing^National Narcotics Leadership Act of 1988 of the Anti''Drug Abuse Act of 1988, Pub.L. 100''753, 102 Stat. 4181, enacted November 18, 1988^Gamboa, Anthony H. (January 4, 2005), B-303495, Office of National Drug Control Policy '-- Video News Release, Government Accountability Office, footnote 6, page 3 ^Drug-Free Media Campaign Act of 1998 (Omnibus Consolidated and Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, 1999), Pub.L. 105''277, 112 Stat. 268, enacted October 21, 1998^Gamboa, Anthony H. (January 4, 2005), B-303495, Office of National Drug Control Policy '-- Video News Release, Government Accountability Office, pp. 9''10 ^Drug-Free Media Campaign Act of 1998 of the Omnibus Consolidated and Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, 1999, Pub.L. 105''277, 112 Stat. 268, enacted October 21, 1998^Office of National Drug Control Policy Reauthorization Act of 2006, Pub.L. 109''469, 120 Stat. 3501, enacted December 29, 2006, codified at 21 U.S.C. § 1753^Barstow, David (2008-04-20). "Message Machine: Behind Analysts, the Pentagon's Hidden Hand". New York Times. ^Sessions, David (2008-04-20). "Onward T.V. Soldiers: The New York Times exposes a multi-armed Pentagon message machine". Slate. ^Barstow, David (2008-05-24). "2 Inquiries Set on Pentagon Publicity Effort". New York Times. ^Rampton, Sheldon (October 17, 2007). "Shared Values Revisited". Center for Media and Democracy. ^"U.S. Reaches Out to Muslim World with Shared Values Initiative". America.gov. January 16, 2003.
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PR
Ryno The Bearded in EU
I just wanted to remind you that our big show is coming up Friday night. I am really excited I am a week and a half into my journey through Europe and everything has been fantastic.
I am already missing the great people I have met on the trip.
But anyways we have 4 bands playing starting at 8PM. There have been some line up changes and I plan on putting together a big post for the show while on the train to Amsterdam tomorrow.
We already have some No Agenda regulars talking about coming and a mention on the show could go a long way to bringing in some more.
Anyways. Over the last 2 days I have discovered French women love an American accent. Now if I wasn't a dumb ass I could of used that to my advantage. That and it is 4:30 local time and I stayed up to meeting great people.
ITM Adam!
--
Ryno
ryno.cc
Migrants
Drowned Syrian toddler embodies heartbreak of migrant crisis - LA Times
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 02:54
Heartbreaking images that emerged Wednesday of a drowned Syrian toddler's body on a Turkish beach went viral, shared by thousands of social media users around the world.
The 3-year-old boy and his 5-year-old brother were reported by Turkish media to have been among 12 refugees who drowned when their boat apparently capsized while trying to make the short but treacherous journey to the Greek island of Kos.
Photos carried by Turkey's Dogan news agency showed the child face-down in on the beach, wearing a red T-shirt, blue shorts and sneakers with Velcro closings, and subsequently a Turkish police officer cradling the small corpse.
Europe is coping with an enormous human wave of refugees, many of them from Syria, and images of recent days have shown people struggling through gaps in border fences, sleeping in train stations or trudging wearily through fields. And the world was horrified last week by news that the decomposing bodies of 71 migrants had been found in a truck on a roadside in Austria, apparently suffocated.
But even against this backdrop of dramatic suffering, the dead toddler's photo struck a nerve.
About 2,000 people per day are making the short crossing from Turkey to the Greek islands, with thousands more crossing the Mediterranean from North Africa. European Union states report more than 500,000 migrants and refugees have crossed the Mediterranean so far this year, and 2,600 of them have died trying to make it.
READ MORE
The conflicts and failures behind the European migrant crisis
Germany's embrace of refugees spurs backlash
At a Macedonian way station, Syrian and other migrants focus on the path ahead
Copyright (C) 2015, Los Angeles Times
LiveLeak.com - Speech of Joseph McCarthy, Wheeling, West Virginia, February 9, 1950
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 04:04
Ladies and gentlemen, tonight as we celebrate the one hundred forty-first birthday of one of the greatest men in American history, I would like to be able to talk about what a glorious day today is in the history of the world. As we celebrate the birth of this man who with his whole heart and soul hated war, I would like to be able to speak of peace in our time'--of war being outlawed'--and of world-wide disarmament. These would be truly appropriate things to be able to mention as we celebrate the birthday of Abraham Lincoln.
Five years after a world war has been won, men's hearts should anticipate a long peace'--and men's minds should be free from the heavy weight that comes with war. But this is not such a period'--for this is not a period of peace. This is a time of ''the cold war.'' This is a time when all the world is split into two vast, increasingly hostile armed camps'--a time of a great armament race.
Today we can almost physically hear the mutterings and rumblings of an invigorated god of war. You can see it, feel it, and hear it all the way from the Indochina hills, from the shores of Formosa, right over into the very heart of Europe itself.
The one encouraging thing is that the ''mad moment'' has not yet arrived for the firing of the gun or the exploding of the bomb which will set civilization about the final task of destroying itself. There is still a hope for peace if we finally decide that no longer can we safely blind our eyes and close our ears to those facts which are shaping up more and more clearly . . . and that is that we are now engaged in a show-down fight . . . not the usual war between nations for land areas or other material gains, but a war between two diametrically opposed ideologies.
The great difference between our western Christian world and the atheistic Communist world is not political, gentlemen, it is moral. For instance, the Marxian idea of confiscating the land and factories and running the entire economy as a single enterprise is momentous. Likewise, Lenin's invention of the one-party police state as a way to make Marx's idea work is hardly less momentous.
Stalin's resolute putting across of these two ideas, of course, did much to divide the world. With only these differences, however, the east and the west could most certainly still live in peace.
The real, basic difference, however, lies in the religion of immoralism . . . invented by Marx, preached feverishly by Lenin, and carried to unimaginable extremes by Stalin. This religion of immoralism, if the Red half of the world triumphs'--and well it may, gentlemen'--this religion of immoralism will more deeply wound and damage mankind than any conceivable economic or political system.
Karl Marx dismissed God as a hoax, and Lenin and Stalin have added in clear-cut, unmistakable language their resolve that no nation, no people who believe in a god, can exist side by side with their communistic state.
Karl Marx, for example, expelled people from his Communist Party for mentioning such things as love, justice, humanity or morality. He called this ''soulful ravings'' and ''sloppy sentimentality.'' . . .
Today we are engaged in a final, all-out battle between communistic atheism and Christianity. The modern champions of communism have selected this as the time, and ladies and gentlemen, the chips are down'--they are truly down.
Lest there be any doubt that the time has been chosen, let us go directly to the leader of communism today'--Joseph Stalin. Here is what he said'--not back in 1928, not before the war, not during the war'--but 2 years after the last war was ended: ''To think that the Communist revolution can be carried out peacefully, within the framework of a Christian democracy, means one has either gone out of one's mind and lost all normal understanding, or has grossly and openly repudiated the Communist revolution.'' . . .
Ladies and gentlemen, can there be anyone tonight who is so blind as to say that the war is not on? Can there by anyone who fails to realize that the Communist world has said the time is now? . . . that this is the time for the show-down between the democratic Christian world and the communistic atheistic world?
Unless we face this fact, we shall pay the price that must be paid by those who wait too long.
Six years ago, . . . there was within the Soviet orbit, 180,000,000 people. Lined up on the antitotalitarian side there were in the world at that time, roughly 1,625,000,000 people. Today, only six years later, there are 800,000,000 people under the absolute domination of Soviet Russia'--an increase of over 400 percent. On our side, the figure has shrunk to around 500,000,000. In other words, in less than six years, the odds have changed from 9 to 1 in our favor to 8 to 5 against us.
This indicates the swiftness of the tempo of Communist victories and American defeats in the cold war. As one of our outstanding historical figures once said, ''When a great democracy is destroyed, it will not be from enemies from without, but rather because of enemies from within.'' . . .
The reason why we find ourselves in a position of impotency is not because our only powerful potential enemy has sent men to invade our shores . . . but rather because of the traitorous actions of those who have been treated so well by this Nation. It has not been the less fortunate, or members of minority groups who have been traitorous to this Nation, but rather those who have had all the benefits that the wealthiest Nation on earth has had to offer . . . the finest homes, the finest college education and the finest jobs in government we can give.
This is glaringly true in the State Department. There the bright young men who are born with silver spoons in their mouths are the ones who have been most traitorous. . . .
I have here in my hand a list of 205 . . . a list of names that were made known to the Secretary of State as being members of the Communist Party and who nevertheless are still working and shaping policy in the State Department. . . .
As you know, very recently the Secretary of State proclaimed his loyalty to a man guilty of what has always been considered as the most abominable of all crimes'--being a traitor to the people who gave him a position of great trust'--high treason. . . .
He has lighted the spark which is resulting in a moral uprising and will end only when the whole sorry mess of twisted, warped thinkers are swept from the national scene so that we may have a new birth of honesty and decency in government.
Migrants shut Eurostar trains to UK; dead wash up on Turkish beach
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 02:58
CALAIS, France/BUDAPEST Hundreds of migrants poured overnight onto the high-speed railway linking Paris with London near the French port of Calais, stranding passengers in darkness aboard Eurostar trains.
Thousands of miles away, the bodies of other migrants washed up on a Turkish beach. Photos of a drowned toddler face down in the surf spread quickly across the Internet, yet another searing image from Europe's worst migration crisis since the 1990s Balkan wars.
Outside a Budapest train station, an angry crowd camped out demanding to board trains for Germany, as Europe's asylum system crumbled under the strain of the influx.
Hundreds of thousands of refugees fleeing wars, as well as economic migrants escaping poverty, have arrived in the European Union, confounding EU leaders and feeding the rise of right wing populists.
Thousands have drowned in the Mediterranean and many others have died traveling over land, including 71 people found in the back of an abandoned truck in Austria last week.
The EU's executive European Commission promised to unveil a new policy next week to make it easier to process asylum claims, send those from safe countries home and distribute bona fide refugees among the bloc's 28 members.
Meanwhile, authorities have struggled to enforce rules which ordinarily allow free movement within most of the EU but restrict travel by undocumented migrants.
Hundreds took to the tracks around France's Calais-Frethun station, the latest target for those trying to reach Britain, which many regard as a better place to live than countries on the continent.
Rail operator SNCF was forced to halt services near the entrance to the Channel Tunnel. Three Eurostar trains were blocked overnight and eventually continued to London early on Wednesday, while two returned to their departure stations.
Passengers on one London-bound train, which stopped less than a mile (1.6 km) from the tunnel, were told at one point to keep quiet and listen for people on the roof. A helicopter with a searchlight circled as guards walked the tracks.
With the power out, passengers sat in stifling darkness for nearly four hours. A woman in business class wept.
Eurostar later pulled the train back to Calais, where passengers disembarked for fresh air and bottled water.
About 3,000 to 4,000 migrants from the Middle East, Asia and Africa camp near Calais, dodging police as they try to board trains and trucks heading to Britain through the tunnel or on ferries. They have disrupted passenger and freight transport between Britain and France throughout the summer.
A spokeswoman for Eurotunnel, which operates the railway tunnel beneath the channel, said that as security has been tightened at Calais port and the tunnel entrance, migrants have targeted Calais-Frethun, about 5 km (three miles) inland, beyond a zone controlled by Eurotunnel.
CONFUSION
In Hungary, hundreds of migrants protested for a second day in front of Budapest's Keleti Railway Terminus, after they were blocked by police from boarding trains bound for Germany. The police said they must go to camps set up in Hungary instead.
Germany, which is prepared to take by far the greatest number of refugees, has begun accepting asylum claims from Syrians regardless of where they entered the EU, even though undocumented migrants are barred from travel across the bloc. That has caused confusion for neighboring countries, which have alternated between letting migrants through and halting them.
Italy announced new measures to add checks at its northern border in response to a German request.
Hungary is the main arrival point for those crossing the Balkans by land. A government spokesman said the country would observe EU rules which bar travel by those without valid documents.
"I want my freedom, I have been on the road for a very long time, and now I am in the European Union, and I want my freedom," said Sanil Khan, 32, leader of a group of about 100 young men who marched behind a cardboard cutout Afghan flag in a tight formation near a mainly peaceful crowd at the station.
CONFOUNDED
The perils of the voyage were brought home by the images of a toddler in red t-shirt, blue shorts and tiny sneakers, washed up on the beach in Bodrum, Turkey. Turkish Police said at least 12 people had drowned from a group of 23 that had set off on two boats bound for a Greek island.
The migration crisis has confounded the EU, which is committed to the principle of accepting refugees fleeing real danger but has no mechanism to compel its 28 member states to share out the burden.
EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker is expected to unveil proposals in an annual state-of-the-union address to the European parliament next week. Interior ministers hold an emergency meeting five days later.
The member states' envoys to Brussels held their first weekly meeting after a summer break and some diplomats detected a somewhat less divided atmosphere on the migrant issue - but sharp differences remain on how to share out responsibilities.
"The mood has changed," one said. "It was a little more consensual today. There was a realization of the challenge Europe faces. There was more appetite to do more."
Opinion across Europe has been increasingly polarised: German soccer fans have unveiled "refugees welcome" banners at matches, while a popular British newspaper columnist called migrants "cockroaches".
Countries like Italy, Greece and Hungary, where most migrants arrive before heading for richer countries further north, say they need more help from EU partners.
Greece, where around 2,000 people have been arriving per day on beaches in dinghies, announced plans for a new operations center and said it would improve conditions at camps the United Nations has described as "shameful". Four Bulgarians and two Turkish citizens had been arrested for trafficking 103 migrants in trucks, it said.
Germany has been the most welcoming, with plans to accept hundreds of thousands of refugees this year alone, adding 3.3 billion euros ($3.7 billion) to its welfare bill next year. A record 104,460 asylum seekers arrived in Germany last month, and more than 400,000 migrants have registered in a German computer system since the start of the year.
But that has caused chaos for neighbours and threatened the Schengen system that abolished frontier checks among 26 European countries. Berlin says that despite its decision to accept asylum applications from Syrians who arrive elsewhere in the EU, other EU states must still demand migrants remain in the countries where they first register.
At the opposite end of the spectrum of openness is Britain, which so far has accepted just 216 Syrian refugees under a scheme in partnership with the United Nations, as well as around 5,000 that managed to reach Britain and apply on their own.
"We have taken a number of genuine asylum seekers from Syrian refugee camps, and we keep that under review, but we think the most important thing is to try to bring peace and stability to that part of the world," Prime Minister David Cameron said. "I don't think there is an answer that can be achieved simply by taking more and more refugees."
(Writing by Peter Graff; editing by Philippa Fletcher and Anna Willard)
Earon
TV Station Owners Report Unexpected Flood of Money From Iran Deal Opponents
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 02:32
Television station owners have been salivating over the expected tidal wave of campaign advertisement spending for the election next year.
But media companies don't have to wait until 2016 for the political cash to materialize. Television station owners just told their investors that they are seeing an unexpected flood of cash from opponents of the nuclear accord with Iran, who are spending tens of millions of dollars on commercials designed to shift the congressional debate against the deal.
Sinclair Broadcast Group, a company that owns stations from Florida to Washington state, was excited to report on an investor call last month that although markets were ''slightly down'' in the last quarter, there is an ''awful lot of issue advertising'' coming into the network, citing the Iran deal.
Brian Lawlor, the vice president of E.W. Scripps Company, another firm that owns a national network of local television stations, likewise bragged on a recent investor call that political money was flowing early in part because of the Iran deal. ''We have seen an early bump on some Iran nuclear deal spending, which has been nice in some of our markets,'' said Lawlor.
The P5+1 deal with Iran lifted economic sanctions on Iran in exchange for strict inspections of, and limitations on, Iran's nuclear industry. Congress is set to vote this month on a resolution that deal opponents hope will block it from going forward.
Opponents of the deal are easily outspending supporters, using nonprofits that do not disclose donor identities, to pump well over $40 million into television commercials urging citizens to call their senators to oppose the agreement. Many of the advertising efforts are led by affiliates of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, a lobbying group aligned with the interests of the Israeli government. As we've reported, a new group called the American Security Initiative, which is led by a Saudi Arabian lobbyist, is also spending money on television ads.
However, spending to bend public opinion and build congressional opposition to the deal appears to be failing. Democrats appear certain to have enough votes to sustain a presidential veto of the resolution, and may be able to sustain a filibuster blocking it from coming to a Senate vote in the first place.
LGBBTQQIAAP
Baron Jim of Jamaica Plain [email] FRACTAL!
Your Sunday show struck a chord. The University of Tennessee/Knoxville is my alma mater (nuturing mother), but I guess its now my alma neutra (nurturing neutral), unless 'nurturing' is too sexist.
When I was there in the early '70s (do the math), our student newspaper, The Daily Beacon, decided to banish sexist pronouns in favor of te, ter, and tem. "Te smoked ter weed and offered tem a toke." Te became tedious to read and te dropped ter foolishness at the end of the term.
This may be another one of John's cycles.
Best regards, Jim
At Harvard, students can pick 'ze, hir, hirs' - The College Fix
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 20:52
At Harvard, students can pick 'ze, hir, hirs'
Gender-neutral pronouns have hit Harvard.
''The Faculty of Arts and Sciences' registration tool now gives students the option to choose preferred gender pronouns for the first time,'' The Harvard Crimson campus newspaper reports.
On the page that typically asks students to write down their gender marker'--examples of which include ''male,'' ''female,'' and ''transgender'''--they could also manually write in preferred gender pronouns when they registered this week. Examples on the page included ''ze, hir, hirs'' and ''they, them, theirs.''
FAS Registrar Michael P. Burke said the change, which administrators have discussed for a number of years, was intended to ''make students feel more comfortable with their gender identity'' at Harvard and ease students' relationships with faculty and advisers, some of whom will be able to see their pronoun information.
The news follows on the heels of the University of Tennessee Knoxville's controversial request to the campus community to use ''gender-neutral pronouns'' such as ''ze, xe, xem, xyr, zirs and hirs.''
Read the full Crimson article.
RELATED: UTK student refuses 'ze, xe, xyr, zirs' gender-neutral pronouns: 'I will not change my entire vocabulary'
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About the Author
Fix Editor
Jennifer Kabbany is editor of The College Fix. She previously worked as a daily newspaper reporter and columnist for a decade in Southern California, and prior to that held editorial positions at The Weekly Standard, Washington Times and FrontPageMagazine. She received a Robert Novak Journalism Fellowship in 2002 and currently contributes to National Review Online's Phi Beta Cons section.
Hillary 2016
Hillary Clinton Hacked Emails For Sale | Radar Online
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 14:16
Just as email-gate looked to be winding down, RadarOnline.com has exclusively learned a person claiming to be a computer specialist has come forward with the stunning news that 32,000 emails from HillaryClinton's private email account are up for sale. The price tag '-- a whopping $500,000!
Promising to give the trove of the former Secretary of State's emails to the highest bidder, the specialist is showing subject lines as proof of what appear to be legitimate messages.
PHOTOS: Exposed! 10 New Revelations From Hillary Clinton's Recently Released Emails '-- Overworked Staff And Guilty Pleasures!
''Hillary or someone from her camp erased the outbox containing her emails, but forgot to erase the emails that were in her sent box,'' an insider reveals to Radar of the Presidential contender's latest nightmare.
Radar has learned that some of the topics discussed in the email appear to include everything from Benghazi to the Algerian hostage crisis '-- with subject lines such as:
''H Libya security latest. Sid'' (with attachment)''H FYI, best analysis so far of hearing Sid,' about the latest securityin Libya''''H Algeria latest French Intel on Algeria hostage Sid''''H Latest French Intel in Algeria hostage Sid'' (with attachment)''H Latest Libya intel internal govt discussions high level'' (withattachment)''H HIGHLY IMPORTANT! Comprehensive Intel Report on (with attachment)''
Warns the insider, ''If these emails get out to the public domain, not only is Hillary finished as a potential Presidential nominee, she could put our country's national security at risk.''
Story developing.
Watch: More emails released from Hillary Clinton's private email server
That time Hillary Clinton emailed about gefilte fish
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 18:17
(US Dept. of State)
The latest batch of Hillary Clinton's emails, released by the State Department after dark on Monday, includes discussions of presidential politics as well as sensitive and high-risk diplomatic dealings. In one grim message, Chelsea Clinton warns her parents that relief efforts after the 2010 earthquake in Haiti are riddled with ''incompetence'' and declares herself ''profoundly disturbed'' by what she saw during a trip to that Caribbean country.
The email trove also includes some lighter, more personal notes, like a request from the former secretary of state for help in figuring out what time ''The Good Wife'' airs.
And then there's the gefilte fish. Four hundred thousand pounds of it, to be precise.
In a March 5, 2010, email to top aides Jake Sullivan and Richard Verma, subject line ''Gefilte fish,'' Hillary asked: ''Where are we on this?''
It's inherently funny: The secretary of state asking two senior officials a cryptic question about a Jewish dish generally served at Passover. This would normally hardly be the stuff that typically requires the attention of America's top diplomat. On Twitter, more than a few people joked (I hope) that this was clearly a code word.
There's a backstory. Of course.
Another email, from February 26, 2010, with the subject line ''Gifilte Fish,'' fleshed out the diplomatic conundrum. Israel was holding up an American shipment of carp, one of several white fishes that can be used as the main ingredient in gefilte fish.
(US Dept. Of State)
How did the trade dispute escalate to Hillary's level?
The day before the ''Gifilte Fish'' email, Clinton appeared before the House Foreign Affairs Committee for a hearing titled ''Promoting Security Through Diplomacy and Development.''
Rep. Don Manzullo, R-Ill., explained that Israel had ''locked up'' nine containers containing carp from a facility in his district that he proudly declared is ''the world's only fish processor of gefilte fish.''
''I just want to make this public and see if there's anything that you can do to get the gefilte fish to Israel by Passover,'' Manzullo asked Clinton.
The transcript records that the secretary of state's first reaction was ''(laughs).''
''Congressman, I will take that mission on,'' she said.
''Thank you. Thank you,'' he responded.
''I don't know if I can promise that we can get it done, but I'll give you my best efforts,'' she added.
''Thank you. Thank you, Madame Secretary,'' the lawmaker said.
''And if not, we're going to have to figure out what to do with nine containers of it,'' she added with a laugh.
''It's 55 percent of their product, and they could lose a couple hundred jobs if they don't get the gefilte fish there,'' Manzullo fretted.
''This sounds to me like, you know, one of those issues that should rise to the highest levels of our government,'' she concluded.
As Tablet magazine's Yair Rosenberg was quick to point out late Monday, the story has a happy ending. The dispute appears in the memoirs of Michael Oren, the former Israeli ambassador to the United States.
Oren noted that the 1985 trade agreement between the United States and Israel protected some vulnerable Israeli sectors '-- including Galilean carp farmers.
Oren says Manzullo called him incessantly, and that the dispute even escalated to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. (''I urged him to focus on Israel's critical issues and leave the fish to me,'' Oren wrote).
Read More
Finally, a compromise. The containers were unloaded in Israel ''on a one-time, nonprecedent basis,'' Oren wrote.
Election 2016
CNN Charging 40 Times Usual Price Republican Debate Spots | Media - Advertising Age
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 06:50
Donald Trump in August. Credit: Michael Nagle/Bloomberg CNN is asking 40 times its normal rate for commercial time in the next Republican debate.
The cable news network is charging as much as $200,000 for a 30-second spot in the prime-time brawl taking place on Sept. 16, according to a media buyer. This is on par with the cost of buying commercial time in some broadcast prime-time series.
Typically, an average prime-time spot on CNN costs about $5,000, buyers said.
It won't be clear who will be in the top-tier debate until Sept. 10. CNN amended its GOP debate criteria to now include anyone who ranks in the top 10 in polling between Aug. 7 and Sept. 10.
CNN is also asking for $50,000 to $60,000 for a commercial in the debate between lower-ranking candidates that will take place earlier in the day.
A CNN spokeswoman declined to comment on pricing.
Much of the buzz can be attributed to GOP frontrunner Donald Trump, whose polarizing viewpoints, crass comments and unpredictability have made for compelling TV.
Fox News set a record earlier in the month with 24 million people tuning in to the first Republican primary debate of the 2016 election cycle, making it the most-watched cable telecast of all time, excluding sports programming. And perhaps even more impressive, the debate drew 6.7 million viewers in the all-important 18-to-49 demographic. This is more than double the 3.2 million people in total that watched the first GOP debate of the 2012 campaign.
While CNN isn't necessarily expected to pull the same audience as Fox News did, it will likely come close.
Billie Gold, VP-research and programming at Carat, predicts the Sept. 16 debate will set a record for CNN as the most-watched debate in the network's history. The previous record was set by the 2008 debate between Vice President hopefuls Sarah Palin and Joe Biden, which was watched by about 10.7 million viewers.
MIC
TCAS, ADS-B Unreliable in Southeast U.S. Beginning Sept. 2 | Regional Issues | Airspace | Aircraft Operations | NBAA - National Business Aviation Association
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 14:18
Sept. 1, 2015
Due to military activities, the TCAS and ADS-B surveillance may be unreliable in the airspace over Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida, and extending approximately 200 nautical miles offshore, from 1 a.m. EDT (0500z) Sept. 2 until midnight EDT (0459z) on Oct. 1.
Pilots are advised that the traffic alert and TCAS may fail to establish tracks on nearby aircraft and may fail to receive traffic alerts (TA) or resolution advisories (RA). Operators should be aware that tracks may first appear within close proximity to their aircraft, and may immediately go into TA/RA status.
Pilots are advised to maintain an increased visual awareness in this area. If operators believe that an aircraft should have triggered an alert, the incident should be reported to air traffic control as soon as possible.
This is due to a late notice Department of Defense exercise, and NBAA has voiced its concern to the FAA that these sort of significant impact tests need much more notice to operators in the NAS.
The NOTAM numbers are as follows:
5/2817 New York Center (ZNY)5/2818 Washington Center (ZDC)5/2819 Jacksonville Center (ZJX)5/2820 Miami Center (ZMA)5/2834 NY Oceanic (ZWY)Text from the ZNY NOTAM:
FDC 5/2817 (KZNY A0369/15) ZNY VA..SPECIAL NOTICE...DUE TO MILITARY ACTIVITIES ON 1030/1090 MHZ, THE TRAFFIC ALERT AND COLLISION AVOIDANCE SYSTEM (TCAS) AND AUTOMATIC DEPENDENT SYSTEM BROADCAST (ADS-B) SURVEILLANCE MAY BE UNRELIABLE IN THE AIRSPACE OVER THE STATES OF VIRGINIA, NORTH CAROLINA, SOUTH CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND FLORIDA, AND EXTENDING APPROXIMATELY 200NM OFFSHORE. PILOTS ARE ADVISED THAT THE TRAFFIC ALERT AND COLLISION AVOIDANCE SYSTEM (TCAS) MAY FAIL TO ESTABLISH TRACKS ON NEARBY AIRCRAFT AND MAY FAIL TO RECEIVE TRAFFIC ALERTS (TA) AND/OR RESOLUTION ADVISORIES (RA). FURTHER, PILOTS ARE ADVISED THAT TRACKS MAY FIRST APPEAR WITHIN CLOSE PROXIMITY TO THEIR AIRCRAFT AND MAY IMMEDIATELY GO INTO TA/RA STATUS. FALSE ALERTS ARE NOT EXPECTED TO BE GENERATED BY THIS MILITARY ACTIVITY AND ANY ALERTS SHALL BE TREATED AS REAL. PILOTS ARE ADVISED TO MAINTAIN AN INCREASED VISUAL AWARENESS IN THIS AREA. IF THE PILOT BELIEVES THAT AN AIRCRAFT SHOULD HAVE TRIGGERED AN ALERT, THE INCIDENCE SHOULD BE REPORTED TO AIR TRAFFIC CONTROL AT THE EARLIEST OPPORTUNE MOMENT. SFC-FL500 1509020500-1510010459
Subscribe to Airspace/Airport Alerts for more updates.
Sovereign Citizens
WITHOUT PREJUDICE-Common Law v. Commercial Code - TITLE 4 FLAG SAYS YOU'RE SCHWAG! The Sovereign Citizen's Handbook --Sovereignty Press - www.flag-book.com - www.sovereignty-book.com - www.flag-book.info - www.sovereign-citizenship.net -
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 03:43
With excerpts from Howard Freeman's ''The UCC Connection''
This country was founded by seemingly sincere Christians, so the American common law is based on the laws set forth by God in the HOLY BIBLE and are supported by all of the case law that has been decided in our history.
Article III, section 2 of the organic Constitution defines the kinds of judicial power the courts have:
common law
equity
admiralty
maritime
At the common law - a crime exists only when there is a victim with actual damages like a broken arm.
In equity - otherwise known as civil law a private contract is or agreement is involved. For an action to be brought there must be a breach of contract and damages.
Maritime - or commercial contract law originates in the rules of trade upon the high seas between international merchants and is enforced by military organizations.
Admiralty - is armed enforcement of the laws of commerce(the law merchant)
All birth certificates, licenses, registrations, insurances, bank accounts, permits, titles, deeds, etc. are commercial contracts created under the UCC - (Uniform Commercial Code) and this is where the confusion begins. Most people do not know that commercial law cannot regulate private dealings between civilians much less where to draw the line.
Where does one draw the line?
The Uniform Commercial Code
The Uniform Commercial Code was adopted by all states in 1964 making it the supreme law of the land. Take a look in the first part of every Federal and State code books and you will the find the Uniform Commercial Code consistent throughout.
UCC 1-103.6 defines how contract law must be in compliance with the rules of the common law providing there is made a knowing reservation of common law rights.
"The Code is complimentary to the Common Law, which remains in force, except where displaced by the code. A statute should be construed in harmony with the Common Law, unless there is a clear legislative intent to abrogate the Common Law." (UCC 1-103.6)
What's the remedy?
"The making of a valid Reservation of Rights preserves whatever rights the person then possesses, and prevents the loss of such rights by application of concepts of waiver or estoppel." (UCC 1-207.7)
It is important to remember when we go into a court, that we are in a commercial, international jurisdiction. If we go into court and say. "I DEMAND MY CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS!", the judge will most likely say, "You mention the Constitution again, and I'll find you in contempt of court!" Then we don't understand how he can do that. Hasn't he sworn to uphold the Constitution? The rule here is: you cannot be charged under one jurisdiction and defend yourself under another jurisdiction. For example, if the French government came to you and asked where you filed your French income tax of a certain year, do you go to the French government and say "I demand my Constitutional Rights?" No. The proper answer is: "THE LAW DOES NOT APPLY TO ME. I AM NOT A FRENCHMAN." You must make your reservation of rights under the jurisdiction in which you are charged, not under some other jurisdiction. So in a UCC court, you must claim your Reservation of Rights under UCC 1-207.
UCC 1-207 goes on to say...
"When a waivable right or claim is involved, the failure to make a reservation thereof, causes a loss of the right, and bars its assertion at a later date." (UCC 1-207.9)
You have to make your claim known early. Further, it says:
"The Sufficiency of the Reservation: any expression indicating an intention to reserve rights is sufficient, such as "without prejudice". (UCC 1-207.4)
Whenever you sign any legal paper that deals with Federal Reserve Notes, write under your signature: "Without Prejudice (UCC 1-207.4)." This reserves your rights. You can show, at UCC 1-207.4, that you have sufficiently reserved your rights.
It is very important to understand just what this means. For example, one man who used this in regard to a traffic ticket was asked by the judge just what he meant by writing "without prejudice UCC 1-207" on his statement to the court? He had not tried to understand the concepts involved. He only wanted to use it to get out of the ticket. He did not know what it meant. When the judge asked him what he meant by signing in that way, he told the judge he was not prejudice against anyone... The judge knew that the man had no idea what it meant, and he lost the case. You must know what it means!
Without Prejudice UCC 1-207
When you use "without prejudice UCC 1-207" in connection with your signature, you are saying, "I reserve my right not to be compelled to perform under any contract or commercial agreement that I did not enter knowingly, voluntarily and intentionally. I do not accept the liability of the compelled benefit of any unrevealed contract or commercial agreement.''
UCC 1-207. Performance or acceptance under Reservation of Rights.
A party who, with explicit reservation of rights, performs or promises performance or assents to performance in a manner demanded or offered by the other party does not thereby prejudice the rights reserved. Such words as "WITHOUT PREJUDICE'','' UNDER PROTEST" or the like are sufficient.
Like this:
''WITHOUT PREJUDICE'' UCC 1-207''
First-Middle:Last
Your autograph is among your most valuable assets. It is not a good idea to autograph a contract without reserving your rights. If you must carry a driver's license you should get a new one with a reservation of rights above your autograph on the license itself. As a matter of fact it is wisest to reserve your rights in any agreement, just in case there is some small print that suggests waiver of your God given freedom.
Includes 3 new chapters:Right of Travel vs. Privelege to DriveLaw of the Land vs. Law of the SeaA real life case of Kidnapping
A look at the "sovereign citizen" movement - CBS News
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 03:15
Byron Pitts reports on a movement the FBI now considers one of the nation's top domestic terror threats
Update:An earlier version of this report included a screen shot of the website of The Sovereign Society. The Sovereign Society is a publishing company that provides advice on investment and tax strategies to maximize personal wealth and autonomy. The Society counsels its readers that tax evasion is illegal and warns against "declaring yourself a 'sovereign citizen' who supposedly is no longer subject to laws, courts or taxes." The Society does not condone violence and has never been accused of violent behavior.
This is a story about a group of Americans you've likely never heard of: they're called "sovereign citizens." Many don't pay taxes, carry a driver's license or hold a Social Security card. They have little regard for the police or the courts, and some have become violent.
The FBI lists them among the nation's top domestic terror threats.
By some estimates, there are as many as 300,000 sovereign citizens in the U.S. And with the sluggish economy and mortgage mess, their ranks are growing.
It's just the kind of movement that attracted people like Jerry Kane. A divorced, out-of-work truck driver from Ohio, Kane became a sovereign citizen in 2003 when he lost his house to foreclosure. To earn a living, he and his son began crisscrossing the country peddling a debt reduction scam.
Kane promised that by tapping into an imaginary government account people could achieve financial salvation. "It fits in all kinds of situations. It doesn't matter what we're talking about...traffic ticket, IRS, mortgage, credit card, hospital bill, child support. Whatever it is," he told an audience at one of his seminars.
By 2009, Kane's self confidence and trademark white jacket could only mask reality. In truth, he was flat broke. His debt elimination seminars were a bust.
As a sovereign citizen, Kane didn't carry a driver's license. His car was registered to a bogus charity. Traffic stops led to arrests, and with each one, Kane's anger towards authority deepened.
"I don't want to have to kill anybody. But if they keep messing with me, that's what it's going to have to come out, that's what it's going to come down to is I'm gonna have to kill. And if I have to kill one, then I'm not going to be able to stop," Kane said at one of his seminars.
Absorbing it all was Kane's 16 year-old son, Joe, home-schooled and raised on sovereign ideology.
On May 20, 2010, the Kanes minivan was pulled over on I-40 by two West Memphis, Ark. police officers.
A dashboard camera captured what happened next: Kane got out of the van. He appeared argumentative. Instead of a license, he had handed over a document declaring his sovereignty. The officers seemed confused by it. Then, there was a scuffle.
Young Joe Kane jumped from the van and began firing an AK-47. Fifty eight seconds later, as the Kanes prepared to flee, the teenager fired four more times.
A truck driver called 911.
"I heard a call go out on my radio, and it said 'Officer down!' The second time she says two officers down at mile marker 275," West Memphis Police Chief Bob Paudert told correspondent Byron Pitts.
Chief Paudert was among the first to arrive. One officer lay motionless on the roadway; a second was in a ditch. Fellow cops came to his aid.
"They kept sayin', 'Bill, you're gonna be okay, Bill, you're gonna be okay.' Well I knew then it was Bill Evans. And I ran down the hill to Bill. He was wounded very badly. And as I started up the incline a sergeant was there and he stopped me. He said, 'Chief, please don't go up there.' I said, 'Is it Brandon?' He said, 'Yes,'" Paudert remembered.
"Brandon" is Sgt. Brandon Paudert, the chief's 39 year-old son.
"I went up there. And Brandon was lying on his back with his gun still in his right hand, clutched in his hand," Paudert remembered.
Brandon Paudert died instantly from a bullet to the head; Bill Evans was declared dead at a hospital. They had taken 25 bullets between them.
The police cornered Jerry and Joe Kane 90 minutes later. The Kanes wounded two more lawmen before they were killed in a WalMart parking lot.
Produced by Clem Taylor
(C) 2012 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Sovereign citizen movement - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 03:11
The sovereign citizen movement is a loose grouping of American and Canadian litigants, commentators, tax protesters and financial-scheme promoters. Self-described sovereign citizens take the position that they are answerable only to their particular interpretation of the common law[1] and are not subject to any statutes or proceedings at the federal, state or municipal levels; that they do not recognize United States currency; and/or that they are "free of any legal constraints."[2][3][4] They especially reject most forms of taxation as illegitimate.[5] Participants in the movement argue this concept in opposition to "federal citizens," who, they say, have unknowingly forfeited their rights by accepting some aspect of federal law.[6] It is similar in doctrines to the freemen on the land movement, more commonly found in Britain and Canada.[7][8][9][10]
Many members of the sovereign citizen movement believe that the United States government is illegitimate.[11] JJ MacNab, who writes for Forbes about anti-government extremism, describes the sovereign citizen movement as consisting of individuals who believe that the County Sheriff is the most powerful law-enforcement officer in the country, with authority superior to that of any federal agent, elected official or local law-enforcement official.[12]
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) classifies some sovereign citizens ("sovereign citizen extremists") as domestic terrorists.[13] In 2010, the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) estimated that approximately 100,000 Americans were "hard-core sovereign believers," with another 200,000 "just starting out by testing sovereign techniques for resisting everything from speeding tickets to drug charges."[14]
According to a 2014 report by the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism, a survey of law-enforcement officials and agencies across the United States concluded that the movement was the single greatest threat to their communities, ranking above Islamic terrorists and jihadists.[15][16][17]
Theories[edit]Writing in American Scientific Affiliation, Dennis L. Feucht reviews American Militias: Rebellion, Racism & Religion by Richard Abanes, and describes the theory of a sovereign-citizen leader Richard McDonald, which is that there are two classes of citizens in America: the "original citizens of the states" (or "States citizens") and "U.S. citizens". McDonald asserts that U.S. citizens or "Fourteenth Amendment citizens" have civil rights,
Legislated to give the freed black slaves after the Civil War rights comparable to the unalienable constitutional rights of white state citizens. The benefits of U.S. citizenship are received by consent in exchange for freedom. State citizens consequently take steps to revoke and rescind their U.S. citizenship and reassert their de jure common-law state citizen status. This involves removing one's self from federal jurisdiction and relinquishing any evidence of consent to U.S. citizenship, such as a Social Security number, driver's license, car registration, use of ZIP codes, marriage license, voter registration, and birth certificate. Also included is refusal to pay state and federal income taxes because citizens not under U.S. jurisdiction are not required to pay them. Only residents (resident aliens) of the states, not its citizens, are income-taxable, state citizens argue. And as a state citizen land owner, one can bring forward the original land patent and file it with the county for absolute or allodial property rights. Such allodial ownership is held "without recognizing any superior to whom any duty is due on account thereof" (Black's Law Dictionary). Superiors include those who levy property taxes or who hold mortgages or liens against the property.[18]
In support of his theories, McDonald has established State Citizen Service Centers around the United States as well as a related web presence.[19]
Writer Richard Abanes asserts that sovereign citizens fail to sufficiently examine the context of the case laws they cite, and ignore adverse evidence, such as Federalist No. 15, where Alexander Hamilton expressed the view that the Constitution placed everyone personally under federal authority.[18]
History[edit]The concept of a sovereign citizen originated in the Posse Comitatus movement as a teaching of Christian Identity minister William P. Gale. The concept has influenced the tax protester movement, the Christian Patriot movement, and the redemption movement'--the last of which claims that the U.S. government uses its citizens as collateral against foreign debt.[6]
Gale identified the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution as the act that converted sovereign citizens into federal citizens by their agreement to a contract to accept benefits from the federal government. Other commentators have identified other acts, including the Uniform Commercial Code,[20] the Emergency Banking Act,[20] the Zone Improvement Plan,[21] and the alleged suppression of the Titles of Nobility Amendment.[22]
Some of those in the movement consider the term "sovereign citizen" an oxymoron, preferring to view themselves as sovereign individuals "seeking the Truth".[23]
Legal status of theories[edit]Variations of the argument that an individual is not subject to various laws because the individual is "sovereign" have been rejected by the courts, especially in tax cases such as Johnson v. Commissioner (Phyllis Johnson's argument'--that she was not subject to the federal income tax because she was an "individual sovereign citizen"'--was rejected by the Court),[24]Wikoff v. Commissioner (argument by Austin Wikoff'--that he was not subject to the federal income tax because he was an "individual sovereign citizen"'--was rejected by the Court),[25]United States v. Hart (Douglas Hart's argument'--in response to a lawsuit against him for filing false lien notices against IRS personnel, that the U.S. District Court had no jurisdiction over him because he was a "sovereign citizen" '-- was rejected by the District Court and the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit),[26]Young v. Internal Revenue Serv. (Jerry Young's argument'--that the Internal Revenue Code did not pertain to him because he was a "sovereign citizen"'--was rejected by the U.S. District Court),[27] and Stoecklin v. Commissioner (Kenneth Stoecklin's argument'--that he was a "freeborn and sovereign" person and was therefore not subject to the income tax laws'--was rejected by the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit; The court imposed $3,000 penalty on Stoecklin for filing a frivolous appeal).[28]
In Risner v. Commissioner, Gregg Risner's argument'--that he was not subject to federal income tax because he was a "Self-governing Free Born Sovereign Citizen"'--was rejected by the Court as being a "frivolous protest" of the tax laws.[29] See also Maxwell v. Snow (Lawrence Maxwell's arguments'--that he was not subject to U.S. federal law because he was a "sovereign citizen of the Union State of Texas", that the United States was not a republican form of government and therefore must be abolished as unconstitutional, that the Secretary of the Treasury's jurisdiction was limited to the District of Columbia, and that he was not a citizen of the United States'--were rejected by the Court as being frivolous),[30] and Rowe v. Internal Revenue Serv. (Heather Rowe's argument'--that she was not subject to federal income tax because she was not a "party to any social compact or contract", because the IRS had no jurisdiction over her or her property, because she was "not found within the territorial limited jurisdiction of the US", because she was a "sovereign Citizen of the State of Maine", and because she was "not a U.S. Citizen as described in 26 U.S.C. 865(g)(1)(A)..."'--was rejected by the Court and was ruled to be "frivolous").[31]
Other tax cases include Heitman v. Idaho State Tax Commission,[32]Cobin v. Commissioner (John Cobin's arguments'--that he had the ability to opt out of liability for federal income tax because he was white, that he was a "sovereign citizen of Oregon", that he was a "non-resident alien of the United States", and that his sovereign status made his body real property'--were rejected by the Court and were ruled to be "frivolous tax-protester type arguments"),[33]Glavin v. United States (John Glavin's argument'--that he was not subject to an Internal Revenue Service summons because, as a sovereign citizen, he was not a citizen of the United States'--was rejected by the Court),[34] and United States v. Greenstreet (Gale Greenstreet's arguments '-- that he was of "Freeman Character" and "of the White Preamble Citizenship and not one of the 14th Amendment legislated enfranchised De Facto colored races", that he was a "white Preamble natural sovereign Common Law De Jure Citizen of the Republic/State of Texas", and that he was a sovereign, not subject to the jurisdiction of the United States District Court '-- were ruled to be "entirely frivolous"),.[35] In view of such cases, the Internal Revenue Service has added "free born" or "sovereign" citizenship to its list of frivolous claims that may result in a $5,000 penalty when used as the basis for an inaccurate tax return.[36]
Similarly, in a case in which an individual named Andrew Schneider was convicted and sentenced to five years in prison for making a threat by mail, Schneider argued that he was a free, sovereign citizen and therefore was not subject to the jurisdiction of the federal courts. That argument was rejected by the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit as having "no conceivable validity in American law."[37]
In a criminal case in 2013, the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington noted:
Defendant [Kenneth Wayne Leaming] is apparently a member of a group loosely styled "sovereign citizens." The Court has deduced this from a number of Defendant's peculiar habits. First, like Mr. Leaming, sovereign citizens are fascinated by capitalization. They appear to believe that capitalizing names has some sort of legal effect. For example, Defendant writes that "the REGISTERED FACTS appearing in the above Paragraph evidence the uncontroverted and uncontrovertible FACTS that the SLAVERY SYSTEMS operated in the names UNITED STATES, United States, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, and United States of America . . . are terminated nunc pro tunc by public policy, U.C.C. 1-103 . . . ." (Def.'s Mandatory Jud. Not. at 2.) He appears to believe that by capitalizing "United States," he is referring to a different entity than the federal government. For better or for worse, it's the same country.Second, sovereign citizens, like Mr. Leaming, love grandiose legalese. "COMES NOW, Kenneth Wayne, born free to the family Leaming, [date of birth redacted], constituent to The People of the State of Washington constituted 1878 and admitted to the union 22 February 1889 by Act of Congress, a Man, "State of Body" competent to be a witness and having First Hand Knowledge of The FACTS . . . ." (Def.'s Mandatory Jud. Not. at 1.)Third, Defendant evinces, like all sovereign citizens, a belief that the federal government is not real and that he does not have to follow the law. Thus, Defendant argues that as a result of the "REGISTERED FACTS," the "states of body, persons, actors and other parties perpetuating the above captioned transaction(s) [i.e., the Court and prosecutors] are engaged . . . in acts of TREASON, and if unknowingly as victims of TREASON and FRAUD . . . ." (Def.'s Mandatory Jud. Not. at 2.)The Court therefore feels some measure of responsibility to inform Defendant that all the fancy legal-sounding things he has read on the internet are make-believe......[38]Defendant Kenneth Wayne Leaming was found guilty of three counts of retaliating against a federal judge or law enforcement officer by a false claim, one count of concealing a person from arrest, and one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm.[39] On May 24, 2013, Leaming was sentenced to eight years in federal prison.[40]
Filing of false lien notices[edit]The New York Times reports that cases involving so-called sovereign citizens pose "a challenge to law enforcement officers and court officials" in connection with the filing of false notices of liens'--a tactic sometimes called "paper terrorism." Anyone can file a notice of lien against property such as real estate, vehicles, or other assets of another under the Uniform Commercial Code and other laws. In most states of the United States, the validity of liens is not investigated or inquired into at the time of filing. Notices of liens (whether legally valid or not) are a cloud on the title of the property and may affect the person's credit rating. Notices of releases of liens generally must be filed before property may be transferred. The validity of a lien is determined by further legal procedures. Clearing up fraudulent notices of liens may be expensive and time consuming. Filing fraudulent notices of liens or documents is both a crime and a civil offense, a tort.[41]
Incidents[edit]Convicted Oklahoma City bombing conspirator Terry Nichols was a member of the sovereign citizen movement, having asserted individual sovereignty in at least three court cases.[42]
2010[edit]In May 2010, two police officers in West Memphis, Arkansas were shot and killed by Joseph T. Kane after Kane and his father were the subject of a traffic stop. Kane and his father were later identified as members of the sovereign citizen movement.[43][44]
In September 2010, David Russell Myrland, an associate of a sovereign citizens group, sent emails and placed telephone calls to various officials of the City of Kirkland, Washington, telling them to "keep their doors unlocked", that they were going to be arrested, and that they "should not resist".[45] Myrland also reportedly threatened federal judges and the chief prosecutor of King County, Washington.[46] Myrland's threat to arrest the mayor of Kirkland came about after he was arrested by police. His vehicle had been impounded after he was found driving with a suspended license and expired vehicle-license tabs. An unloaded gun with ammunition nearby had been found on the seat of the car.[47] Although he was not a law enforcement officer, Myrland had claimed that he had the authority to form a group of private citizens to arrest felons in public office "as permitted by RCW 9A.16.020"[47] (the state statute governing lawful use of force).[48] On December 2, 2011, Myrland was sentenced to three years and four months in federal prison after pleading guilty in connection with the threats he made, including the threat to forcibly arrest the mayor of Kirkland, Washington.[45] Myrland was released from prison on January 29, 2014.[49]
2011[edit]In March 2011, a central figure in the sovereign citizen movement named Samuel Lynn Davis pleaded guilty to 31 counts of money laundering in Federal district court in Nevada. Davis was snared in a sting operation after he agreed to launder more than $1.29 million in what he believed to be illicit funds. Davis accepted $73,782 fees to launder the money, not realizing he was dealing with federal law enforcement agents.[50] In October 2011, Davis was sentenced to four years and nine months in federal prison, and was ordered to pay over $95,000 in restitution.[51][52] As of late July 2012, Davis was classified as a fugitive, having failed to surrender to authorities to begin his prison sentence in June 2012.[53] On August 7, 2012, Davis was arrested by sheriff's deputies in White Earth, North Dakota.[54] Davis is inmate # 43741-048 at the La Tuna Federal Correctional Institution at Anthony, Texas near El Paso, and is scheduled for release on April 24, 2017.[55]
In September 2011, Edward and Elaine Brown, serving long federal prison sentences for various crimes, were identified by the Federal Bureau of Investigation as being members of the sovereign citizen movement.[56]
On November 4, 2011, a federal jury in Montgomery, Alabama found Monty Ervin guilty of conspiracy to defraud the United States and tax evasion. His wife Patricia Ervin was also found guilty of various related charges. According to a news release by the U.S. Department of Justice, Ervin and his wife had acquired hundreds of investment properties over a ten-year period, had received more than $9 million in rental income, but had paid nothing in federal income taxes. The Ervins reportedly claimed that they were not United States citizens, that they were "sovereigns," and that they did not consider themselves subject to federal or state law. Ervin and his wife had also filed documents in probate court attempting to renounce their U.S. citizenship. In one filing, Ervin declared himself to be the governor of Alabama in its "original jurisdiction."[57] On May 29, 2012, Monty Ervin was sentenced to ten years in prison, and Patricia Ervin was sentenced to five years of probation, with the condition that she spend 40 consecutive weekends in jail.[58]
In December 2011, Shawn Talbot Rice was arrested at his home at Seligman, Arizona, after a ten-hour standoff with FBI agents and other law enforcement personnel.[59] On July 24, 2012, Rice was found guilty in federal court in Nevada in connection with the same money-laundering scheme that resulted in the conviction of Samuel Lynn Davis. The guilty verdicts came on one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering, thirteen counts of money laundering, and four counts of failure to appear in court in connection with time that Rice spent as a fugitive. Rice, who had also falsely claimed to be a lawyer and a rabbi, was described as "a leader in the anti-government 'sovereign citizens' movement."[53] During the trial, Rice tried to argue that the presiding federal judge had no authority to render a judgment against Rice.[60] On March 20, 2013, Rice was sentenced to 8 years and 2 months in prison, and was ordered to forfeit over $1.29 million.[61] As of early June 2014, Rice is incarcerated at the Florence Federal Correctional Institution at Florence, Colorado, and is scheduled for release on October 9, 2020.[62]
2012[edit]On February 1, 2012, Timothy Garrison, an accountant from Mount Vernon, Washington was sentenced to three and a half years in federal prison after having pled guilty to tax fraud. He admitted to having filed about 50 falsified tax returns. Federal prosecutors contended that Garrison's actions cost the Internal Revenue Service over 2.4 million dollars in tax revenues. Prosecutors also stated that the sixty-year-old accountant had described himself as a "sovereign citizen" beyond the reach of state and federal law. Garrison had previously served time in federal prison in the 1980s in connection with fraud against investors in a cattle ranch.[63] Garrison was released from Federal prison on July 16, 2014.[64]
On June 18, 2012, Francis August Schaeffer Cox, who had asserted that he was a sovereign citizen, was found guilty in the United States District Court in Anchorage, Alaska, of several felony charges including conspiracy to commit murder.[65][66] On January 8, 2013, Cox was sentenced to 25 years and 10 months in prison.[67]
On June 20, 2012, Anson Chi was arrested by federal authorities for allegedly trying to blow up a natural gas pipe line in a residential area of Plano, Texas.[68] On June 3, 2013, Chi pleaded guilty to a charge of attempting to destroy a natural gas pipeline used in interstate commerce, and to a charge of possessing an explosive device not registered with the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record.[69] However, on February 26, 2014, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas issued an order granting Chi's motion to withdraw his guilty plea.[70] Eventually, he again pleaded guilty and, on June 11, 2015, he was sentenced to twenty years in federal prison for possession of an unregistered firearm and for malicious use of an explosive.[71]
On July 19, 2012, Martin Jonassen, who had described himself as a sovereign citizen, was found guilty by a jury in an Indiana federal court of kidnapping his 21-year-old daughter, whom he allegedly had sexually abused, and of obstruction of justice.[72] During the incident, the daughter escaped from a hotel room where Jonassen had been holding her, ran naked into a store and begged for help. Jonassen was caught on surveillance footage chasing her, dragging her out of the store and pushing her into his car.[73] The daughter reportedly "had never been to school and only read books about religion, history and the government approved by her father." She had seen a doctor only once in her life.[74] On February 19, 2013, Jonassen was sentenced to forty years in federal prison.[75] Jonassen is incarcerated at the United States Penitentiary at Tucson, Arizona, and is scheduled for release on August 10, 2047.[76]
On August 16, 2012, two sheriff's deputies were shot to death and two others seriously wounded after having been ambushed near LaPlace, Louisiana. Authorities arrested seven suspects, two of whom have been identified by law enforcement as members of a sovereign citizen's group.[77]
On August 27, 2012, Lonnie G. Vernon and Karen Vernon, an Alaska couple who were described as "followers of Schaeffer Cox", pled guilty to conspiracy to commit murder of U.S. District Judge Ralph Beistline, who presided over a federal income tax case based on sovereign-citizen theories which had cost the Vernons their house. They also admitted that they had planned to kill Beistline's daughter and grandchildren, and an Internal Revenue Service official. The Vernons bought a silencer-equipped pistol and hand grenades in March 2011; but the seller to whom they disclosed their plans was a confidential informant, and the Vernons were arrested as soon as the transaction had been consummated.[78] At the sentencing hearing on January 7, 2013, Lonnie Vernon continued to assert that he was denying the authority of the court, the judge and the prosecutors. Karen Vernon was sentenced to 12 years in prison.[79] Lonnie Vernon was sentenced to over 25 years in prison.[80]
On September 10, 2012, David B. Graham of Gwinnett County, Georgia pled guilty to violation of the Georgia racketeering statute. After losing his home in a foreclosure, he moved back into the home and filed a fraudulent quitclaim deed in the county property records in an attempt to transfer the ownership of the home back to himself. He was one of approximately a dozen so-called "sovereign citizens" who had been indicted on racketeering charges "for essentially stealing 18 high-end homes in eight counties...."[81] At the hearing, Graham's attorney disclosed to the Court that Graham had been "influenced by the sovereign citizen group '' individuals who believe that they each make up their own sovereign state or nationality, and are thus immune to federal, state and local laws...."[82]
On September 18, 2012, James Timothy ("Tim") Turner was arrested after having been indicted by a federal grand jury in Alabama on one count of conspiracy to defraud the United States under 18 U.S.C. § 371 by, among other things, allegedly filing a false 300 million dollar bond in an attempt to pay taxes, one count of passing a false 300 million dollar bond, five additional counts of violations of section 514(a)(2) of title 18 of the U.S.C. (relating to fictitious documents), one count of filing false Form 1096 reports with the Internal Revenue Service, one count of willful failure to file a federal income tax return, and one count of giving false testimony in a federal bankruptcy proceeding. Turner had described himself as the "president" of a sovereign citizens group called the "Republic for the United States of America".[83][84][85][86] According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, Turner had also been involved with the Guardians of the Free Republics organization.[87] On March 22, 2013, Turner was found guilty on all charges. On July 31, 2013, he was sentenced to 18 years in Federal prison.[88][89] He is incarcerated at the United States Penitentiary, Marion, Illinois, and is scheduled for release in May 2028.[90]
On September 27, 2012, 71 year old Phillip Monroe Ballard, who at the time was being held in Federal custody in Fort Worth, Texas, facing a trial on federal tax charges scheduled to begin on October 1, 2012, was charged with offering $100,000 in a plot to kill U.S. District Judge John McBryde, the judge who was scheduled to preside over the trial. Federal authorities alleged that Ballard gave a fellow inmate detailed instructions to kill Judge McBryde with a high-powered rifle from a building across the street from the federal courthouse. Ballard allegedly said the killer could shoot the judge as he entered the courthouse. The Federal Bureau of Investigation also alleged that Ballard had a back up plan to have his accomplice plant a bomb in the judge's vehicle. Ballard's tax trial did not begin on Monday, October 1. Instead, Ballard appeared for a preliminary hearing on the murder solicitation charge on that day. The investigation reportedly had begun a few weeks earlier, following a tip from a fellow inmate. Ballard, who claimed to be a "sovereign citizen" immune from all U.S. laws, was convicted in 1987 of a federal tax charge in connection with his seizure by force of a Mercedes automobile that was subject to a federal tax lien.[91][92] In 2011, Ballard was also charged with falsely holding himself out as an attorney.[93] On December 11, 2013, Ballard was found guilty of attempting to hire a hit man to kill the federal judge. On March 17, 2014, Ballard was sentenced to the maximum 20 years in prison for the solicitation to commit murder conviction under 18 U.S.C. § 373.[94][95] Ballard had been awaiting trial on one count of corrupt interference with the U.S. internal revenue laws under 26 U.S.C. § 7212 and six counts of aiding and assisting in preparation of false and fraudulent U.S. federal income tax returns under 26 U.S.C. § 7206. Those charges were dropped, however, after Ballard's sentencing in the murder solicitation case.[96] Ballard is scheduled for release in December 2029.[97]
On December 11, 2012, Jeniffer Herring of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina allegedly led officers on a chase of up to 70 miles per hour while she was talking by cell phone to a 911 dispatcher as she allegedly refused to stop for the police who were trying to apprehend her. According to a news release from the Brunswick County Sheriff's Office, Herring told 911 dispatchers she would pull over for deputies for $300,000.[98] A law enforcement official indicated that Herring was a member of the "sovereign citizen" movement. Herring eventually was stopped, and was charged with driving while intoxicated, felony flight to elude arrest, driving with a revoked driver license, reckless driving, and driving left of center. Herring also faces a separate charge for failure to appear in court in another case involving a charge of driving while intoxicated.[99] On January 28, 2013, she was indicted by a grand jury.[100]
On December 29, 2012, dentist Glenn Richard Unger, alias "Dr. Sam Kennedy," was arrested in Ogdensburg, New York, after having been indicted by a federal grand jury ten days earlier, on one count of attempting to interfere with the administration of the internal revenue laws under Internal Revenue Code section 7212(a), four counts of filing false claims for tax refunds under 18 USC section 287, one count of tax evasion under Internal Revenue Code section 7201, and one count of uttering a fictitious obligation under 18 USC section 514(a)(2). He was charged with filing more than $36 million in fraudulent federal income tax refund claims. On January 2, 2013, a federal prosecutor asserted in a court hearing for Unger that Unger was a danger to the community and that Unger had stated that he would rather die than become subject to the government. Unger has been identified as a leader of the sovereign citizen movement. The indictment alleged, among other things, that in June 2011 Unger submitted false documents with the Clerk's Office of Saratoga County, New York, in an attempt to release a $116,410.43 federal tax lien against him, for taxes and penalties for years 2004, 2005, and 2006.[87][101][102] The Federal Bureau of Investigation began looking at Unger in the spring of 2010, in connection with the now-defunct group called the Guardians of the Free Republics, when the FBI was investigating letters that had been sent by that group to the governors of all fifty states, demanding that all governors resign within three days. Prosecutors also alleged that Unger filed no valid federal income tax returns between 1999 and 2005. On May 23, 2013, the court ordered a mental competency hearing for Unger after he referred to himself as being "deceased."[103] On August 7, 2013, the Court ruled that Unger was competent to stand trial.[104] After a four-day trial Unger was found guilty of all charges by a jury in Federal court in Albany, New York, on October 21, 2013.[105] Evidence in the case also indicated that Unger left his dental business in 2006, and referred about eighty of his patients to an orthodontist, William O'Donnell, without telling O'Donnell that the patients had already pre-paid Unger for dental work. After O'Donnell complained to Unger that the customers were expecting O'Donnell to perform the work, Unger reportedly gave O'Donnell a bogus promissory note that O'Donnell could supposedly use to obtain funds from the U.S. Department of the Treasury. When O'Donnell tried to deposit the note at a bank, he found the note to be fictitious and worthless. On April 21, 2014, Unger was sentenced to eight years in federal prison.[106] Unger is incarcerated at the Brooklyn Metropolitan Detention Center at Brooklyn, New York, and is scheduled for release on January 13, 2020.[107]
2013[edit]In May 2013, the Criminal Investigation Division of the Internal Revenue Service, issued its Annual Business Report for Fiscal Year 2012 (for the fiscal year ended September 30, 2012). Within the "Narcotics and Counterterrorism" section of the report, in a portion entitled "Sovereign Citizens", the IRS mentions the convictions of Monty and Patricia Ervin, Timothy Garrison and David Russell Myrland.[108] In the report, the IRS states: "During 2012, CI [the Criminal Investigation division of the IRS] found a re-emergence of individuals and/or entities who proclaimed themselves Sovereign Citizens. Generally, they utilized anti-government or anti-tax rhetoric schemes to disrupt the tax administration process. CI has partnered with Department of Justice and Office of the Inspector General for Tax Administration to create a working group to address this emerging threat."[82]
On June 14, 2013, Raymond Leo Jarlik Bell was sentenced in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington to 8 years and one month in prison after having been convicted of five counts of filing false, fictitious, and fraudulent claims; 15 counts of assisting in filing false U.S. federal tax returns, three counts of mail fraud; and one count of criminal contempt. Bell and his wife Ute Christine Jarlik Bell (who was also convicted) were identified by the Federal Bureau of Investigation as being members of the "Sovereign Citizen" movement. In a news media release, U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan stated that Bell had "held himself out as a tax expert with contacts at the IRS'--when both the IRS and a federal judge told him repeatedly that his conduct was criminal..." Durkan stated that Bell believed he was above the law and that Bell had promoted a fraudulent tax refund scheme known as "OID fraud." Bell's wife, Ute Christine Jarlik Bell, was convicted of four counts of filing false, fictitious and fraudulent claims.[109]
On August 22, 2013, David Allen Brutsche and Devon Campbell Newman were arrested for plotting to abduct, torture and kill Las Vegas police officers in order to attract attention to the sovereign citizens movement. They reportedly attended sovereign citizen philosophy training sessions, bought guns, and found a vacant house for their activities. The two allegedly planned to torture and kill police officers[110] and are alleged to have created videos explaining their actions and why officers had to die.[111] On December 12, 2013, Devon Newman pleaded guilty to a lesser charge, conspiracy to commit false imprisonment, and was sentenced to one year of probation. The trial for Brutsche was scheduled to begin March 10, 2014[112] but, on February 3, 2014, Brutsche pleaded guilty to conspiracy to kidnap a police officer.[113] On April 7, 2014, he was sentenced to five years probation.[114]
In November 2013, Robert Carr seized eleven Ohio homes while their owners were away and filed quiet title suits to the properties.[115] The grand jury later indicted him on felony charges of breaking and entering, and theft.[116] Carr was sentenced to seven months in prison.[117]
2014[edit]On January 9, 2014, sixty-seven-year-old Sharon Alicia Anzaldi of Elmwood Park, Illinois was sentenced in federal court to five years in prison for filing fraudulent tax returns. She filed false returns for herself, family and friends, and had claimed tax refunds of over $8 million. She had tried to have her case dismissed on various grounds, including the theory that, although she was a citizen of Illinois, she was not subject to federal criminal law. The U.S. District Court ruled against her arguments. Anzaldi was also ordered to pay over $851,000 in restitution to the Internal Revenue Service.[118]
On February 13, 2014, a former chiropractor named John A. Glavin of New Lisbon, Wisconsin was sentenced in Federal district court in Wisconsin to three years in prison followed by three years of supervised release. Glavin was found guilty of filing fraudulent federal income tax refund claims of over $956,000. When the Internal Revenue Service investigated his false tax refund claims, Glavin filed false liens against IRS personnel and against the Secretary of the Treasury. In addition to his federal tax problems, Glavin had problems under the laws of the State of Wisconsin by using a "Sovereign Citizens Movement" scheme in connection with a bank foreclosure of his home. While still awaiting trial on the federal charges of filing the false tax refund claims, Glavin sent false promissory notes to the bank. He claimed that the U.S. Treasury would pay off his home mortgage. As a result of that scheme, Glavin was sentenced in a Juneau County Court in Wisconsin to 90 days in jail for fraud. In the Juneau County Court, Glavin was ordered to pay restitution of over $44,000 to the bank and to refrain from filing "sovereign citizen" paperwork in any court. The judge in the Juneau County Court stated, "The sovereign citizen theory is foolish....It is legal nonsense and frivolous."[119] Glavin is incarcerated at Federal Medical Center Rochester, at Rochester, Minnesota, and is scheduled for release on June 11, 2016.[120]
In March 2014, after Cliven Bundy lost a second U.S. District Court case in a 20-year court battle, he sent letters entitled "Range War Emergency Notice and Demand for Protection" to county, state, and federal officials. In his court filings, depositions, and subsequent statements, he said he does not recognize the US Government because he is a citizen of the State of Nevada.[121] In media interviews, Bundy used the language of the sovereign citizen movement[122] as a rallying call, beckoning support [122] from members of the Oath Keepers,[122] the White Mountain Militia,[122] the Praetorian Guard,[122] and other like-minded individuals to join his Bundy militia[123][124][125][126] in a fight against the US Government.[122] Armed militants from Nevada, Idaho, Arizona, California, and other areas responded with a show of force[127] by joining the Bundy militia[122][125][128] at a heavily armed militia camp near Bunkerville, Nevada in early April 2014. Approximately 1000 militia members and supporters joined the fight.[129] On April 12, 2014, and consistent with the sovereign citizen credo and without success, Bundy ordered Sheriff Gillespie to confront the federal agents, disarm them and deliver their arms to them within an hour of his declaration.[12][130]
In April 2014, Mark Manuel, of Franklin, Tennessee, who set up a consultancy business claiming to be able to remove debts by accessing secret government bank accounts, was convicted with two associates on eight counts of mail fraud. In a press release, the FBI stated that, "the men defrauded hundreds of thousands of dollars from more than 250 victims. Witnesses testified that the men encouraged customers to seek cash advances from credit cards and to raid retirement accounts in order to pay Eden Gifted Properties' fees."[131]
On June 6, 2014, Dennis Marx, who was later identified as being a member of the sovereign citizens movement, opened fire on a Forsyth County, Georgia courthouse, injuring one deputy before being shot and killed himself.[132] Marx had become involved in a dispute with sheriff's deputies in 2011. He had been arrested on marijuana and weapons possession charges. As a result, Marx sued the sheriff's department for alleged civil rights violations and use of excessive force. The Southern Poverty Law Center asserts that in the suit, Marx filed documents using the pseudo-legal language common to "sovereign citizen" court actions.[133][134] On the day of the incident, Marx had been scheduled to enter a plea at the courthouse in connection with the year 2011 arrest that had resulted in his lawsuit.[135]
On June 18, 2014, Cherron Phillips (who sometimes calls herself "River Tali El Bey")[136] was found guilty by a Federal court jury in Chicago on ten counts of retaliatory filing of false claims, including 100 billion dollars in false lien notices, against various government officials, apparently in connection with her brother's conviction on drug conspiracy charges in 2008.[136] Even as the jury was deliberating her own case, Phillips had claimed that the court had no jurisdiction over her. After the guilty verdict was announced, U.S. District Court Judge Michael Reagan referred to her as a "paper terrorist," and the United States Marshal took her into custody. On October 14, 2014, she was sentenced to seven years in federal prison.[137] Phillips is a resident of the Federal Correctional Institution at Waseca, Minnesota, and is scheduled for release on August 20, 2020.[138]
2015[edit]Already in prison since January 2007 for failure to pay federal taxes, for structuring various bank transactions to evade reporting requirements, and for attempting to obstruct administration of the U.S. internal revenue laws, Young Earth Creationist and Sovereign Citizen proponent Kent Hovind had a raft of new charges laid against him for the filing of lis pendens liens on property deemed forfeited to pay for earlier unpaid taxes.[139] The government argued that the filing of these liens had been earlier forbidden by a court. During his incarceration, Hovind relied increasingly on Sovereign Citizen arguments, denying his U.S Citizenship and declaring "Democracy is evil and contrary to God's law". Hovind's co-defendant was Paul J. Hansen, another Sovereign Citizen advocate. In filings before the court relating to the trial, both made lengthy submissions recycling typical Sovereign Citizen tropes, such as "withdrawing consent for the proceedings", denial of jurisdiction, invocation of maritime law, the attempted convocation of unsanctioned citizen grand juries, and which threatened the judge personally.[140][141] While the jury failed to reach a verdict on the other charges, on March 12, 2015, Hovind was found guilty of criminal contempt.[142] The judge, however, rendered a judgment of acquittal in favor of Hovind on May 18, 2015, concluding that the relevant court order had lacked specific language prohibiting Hovind from doing what he did.[143] Hansen, who claims he is neither a U.S. citizen nor resident because he lives on "church land", was convicted on two counts of contempt and sentenced to 18 months in prison and three years probation of August 21, 2015. [144]
In January 2015, Ishaq Ibrahim, 28, of Philadelphia was convicted in a court in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, of multiple counts of conspiracy and robbery after defending himself using sovereign citizen arguments. Ibrahim, charged with bank robbery,[145] repeatedly questioned the validity of the proceedings and the jurisdiction of the judge during the trial, and asserted he did not consent to the proceedings. Ibrahim initially represented himself at the trial, but after he became disruptive and was removed from the courtroom, the judge appointed lawyers to represent him. Ibrahim then monitored the trial via video from another room.[146]
In the media[edit]"Public Enemy", an episode of the crime drama television programThe Glades first broadcast July 15, 2012, depicted the sovereign citizen movement as a mixture of fraudulent promoters and sincere believers, whose proclivity for violence (Terry Nichols' links to the movement are explicitly mentioned) and for harassment by means of fraudulent legal motions intimidate professional law enforcement officers and civil service functionaries. It represented the movement as arguing that by changing one's name on birth certificates, driver's licenses and the like, one can reclaim one's status as a sovereign.[147]
See also[edit]References[edit]^Lorelei Laird, " 'Sovereign citizens' plaster courts with bogus legal filings--and some turn to violence," May 1, 2014, ABA Journal (American Bar Association), at [1].^Yerak, Becky; Sachdev, Ameet (June 11, 2011). "Giordano's strange journey in bankruptcy". Chicago Tribune.^Also, see generally Kevin Johnson, "Anti-government 'Sovereign Movement' on the rise in U.S.", March 30, 2012, USA Today, at [2].^"'Sovereign Citizen' Suing State Arrested Over Traffic Stop", April 6, 2012, WRTV Indianapolis, at [3].^The Sovereign Citizen Movement. The Militia Watchdog Archives. Anti-Defamation League.^ abCarey, Kevin (July 2008). "Too Weird for The Wire". Washington Monthly. Retrieved July 19, 2008. ^Graveland, Bill. "Freemen-On-The-Land: Little-Known 'Sovereign Citizen' Movement Emerged From Shadows In 2013". Huffington Post. Canadian Press. Retrieved 20 June 2015. ^Wagner, Adam. "Freemen on the Land are "parasites" peddling "pseudolegal nonsense": Canadian judge fights back". UK Human Rights Blog. 1 Crown Office Row barristers' chambers. Retrieved 20 June 2015. ^Rush, Curtis. "Sovereign citizen movement: OPP is watching". The Star. Toronto Star. Retrieved 20 June 2015. ^The Law Society of British Columbia: Practice Tips: The Freeman-on-the-Land movement^"Context Matters: the Cliven Bundy Standoff". Forbes.com. Retrieved 2 May 2014. ^ abMacNab, JJ. "Context Matters: The Cliven Bundy Standoff -- Part 3". Forbes. Retrieved 6 May 2014. ^"Sovereign Citizens A Growing Domestic Threat to Law Enforcement". Domestic Terrorism. Federal Bureau of Investigation. September 11, 2011. Retrieved May 3, 2015. ^MacNab, J.J. "'Sovereign' Citizen Kane". Intelligence Report. Issue 139. Southern Poverty Law Center. Fall 2010.^Parker, Jameson. "Study: Greatest Terrorism Threat In America Not Al Qaeda, It's Right-Wing Sovereign Citizens" addicting info.org August 3, 2014^Jessica Rivinius, "Sovereign citizen movement perceived as top terrorist threat," July 30, 2014, National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism, at [4].^David Carter, Steve Chermak, Jeremy Carter & Jack Drew, "Understanding Law Enforcement Intelligence Processes: Report to the Office of University Programs, Science and Technology Directorate, U.S. Department of Homeland Security," July 2014, National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (College Park, Maryland), at [5]^ abFeucht, Dennis (June 1997). "Essay Review of AMERICAN MILITIAS: Rebellion, Racism & Religion". Perspectives on Science and Christian Faith. American Scientific Affiliation. pp. 116''118. Retrieved September 4, 2014. ^"Welcome to the State Citizen's Service Center". 18 April 2015. Archived from the original on 26 March 2015. ^ abHall, Kermit; Clark, David Scott (2002). The Oxford Companion to American Law. ^Fleishman, David (Spring 2004). "Paper Terrorism: The Impact of the 'Sovereign Citizen' on Local Government". The Public Law Journal27 (2). ^Smith, William C. (November 1996). "The Law According to Barefoot Bob". ABA Journal. ^J.J. MacNab, (February 13, 2012)"What is a Sovereign Citizen?". Forbes.^37 T.C.M. (CCH) 189, T.C. Memo 1978-32 (1978), at [6].^37 T.C.M. (CCH) 1539, T.C. Memo 1978-372 (1978), at [7].^701 F.2d 749 (8th Cir. 1983) (per curiam), at [8].^596 F. Supp. 141 (N.D. Ind. 1984), at [9].^865 F.2d 1221 (11th Cir. 1989), at [10].^Docket # 18494-95, 71 T.C.M. (CCH) 2210, T.C. Memo 1996-82, United States Tax Court (February 26, 1996), at [11].^409 F.3d 354 (D.C. Cir. 2005), at [12].^Case no. 06-27-P-S, U.S. District Court for the District of Maine (May 9, 2006), at [13].^Case no. CV-07-209-E-BLW, U.S. District Court for the District of Idaho (June 29, 2007).^Docket # 16905-05L, T.C. Memo 2009-88, United States Tax Court (April 28, 2009), at [14].^Case no. 10-MC-6-SLC, U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin (June 4, 2010), at [15].^912 F.Supp. 224 (N.D. Tex. 1996), at [16].^"The Truth about Frivolous Tax Arguments". Internal Revenue Service. January 1, 2011.^United States v. Schneider, 910 F.2d 1569 (7th Cir. 1990), at [17].^Order, docket entry 102, Feb. 12, 2013, United States v. Kenneth Wayne Leaming, case no. 12-cr-5039-RBL, U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington.^Jury verdicts, Feb. 28, 2013 and March 1, 2013, United States v. Kenneth Wayne Leaming, case no. 12-cr-5039-RBL, U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington.^News release, May 24, 2013, Office of the United States Attorney for the Western District of Washington, at [18]. Leaming is incarcerated at the United States Penitentiary at Marion, Illinois, and is scheduled for release on February 13, 2019. See Federal Bureau of Prisons record, Kenneth Wayne Leaming, inmate # 34928-086, U.S. Dep't of Justice.^Erica Goode (August 23, 2013). "In Paper War, Flood of Liens Is the Weapon". The New York Times. Retrieved August 24, 2013. ^Pepke, David Ray (1998) Heretics in the Temple^Dan Harris, Deadly Arkansas Shooting By 'Sovereigns' Jerry and Joe Kane Who Shun U.S. Law (July 1, 2010), ABC News.^Michael Braga, Economy Boosts Sovereign-Citizen Movement (July 30, 2011), Sarasota Herald-Tribune.^ ab"Kirkland Man Sentenced To 40 Months In Prison For Threatening Public Officials" (Press release). Office of the U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Washington. December 2, 2011.^"Man gets 3 years for threatening Kirkland mayor". The Bellingham Herald. December 2, 2011.^ abPhelps, Matt (October 4, 2010). "Reporter informs Redmond man of charges in alleged threats against Kirkland Mayor, Assistant City Attorney". Redmond Reporter.^"RCW 9A.16.020: Use of force'--When lawful."Revised Code of Washington. Washington State Legislature. Retrieved December 16, 2011^David Russell Myrland, inmate # 40941-086, Federal Bureau of Prisons, U.S. Dep't of Justice.^John L. Smith. Conviction chips away at Sovereign Citizen guru's facade (March 27, 2011). Las Vegas Review-Journal.^Jeff German, "Judge sentences anti-government leader to prison," October 27, 2011, Las Vegas Review-Journal, at [19].^See generally United States v. Samuel Davis, case no. 2:09-cr-00078-JCM-RJJ, U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada.^ abJeff German, July 24, 2012, "Leader in anti-government movement convicted of money laundering," Las Vegas Review-Journal, at [20].^Jeff German, "Sovereign citizens leader, fugitive from Las Vegas, arrested in North Dakota," Aug. 14, 2012, Las Vegas Review-Journal, at [21].^Federal Bureau of Prisons, U.S. Dep't of Justice, at [22].^"Sovereign Citizens: A Growing Threat to Law Enforcement," Law Enforcement Bulletin (Sept. 2011), Counterterrorism Analysis Section, Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Department of Justice, at [23].^News Release, Nov. 4, 2011, "Self-Proclaimed 'Governor' of Alabama and Wife Convicted of Tax Fraud," Office of Public Affairs, U.S. Department of Justice, at [24].^News Release, May 29, 2012,"Self-proclaimed "Governor" of Alabama Sentenced to Ten Years in Federal Prison for Tax Fraud," Office of Public Affairs, U.S. Department of Justice, at [25].^Brian Bennett, "'Sovereign citizen' movement now on FBI's radar," Feb. 23, 2012, Los Angeles Times, at [26].^"Anti-government leader found guilty in Vegas case," July 24, 2012, Associated Press, as published by the San Francisco Chronicle, at [27].^William D'Urso, "'Sovereign citizen' gets 8 years in money laundering case," March 20, 2013, Las Vegas Sun, at [28].^Shawn Rice, inmate # 89135-008, Federal Bureau of Prisons, U.S. Dep't of Justice.^Levi Pulkkinen, "Washington accountant sentenced to prison for 'crusade' against IRS", Feb. 1, 2012, at [29].^Record, inmate # 13961-086, Federal Bureau of Prisons, U.S. Dep't of Justice.^Ben Anderson, "Alaska militia trial: Cox, Vernon found guilty of conspiracy to murder", June 18, 2012, Alaska Dispatch, at [30].^Richard Mauer & Lisa Demer, "Jury convicts militiamen on most charges", June 18, 2012, Anchorage Daily News, at [31].^Jill Burke, "Militia leader Schaeffer Cox gets a nearly 26 year prison sentence," Jan. 8, 2013, Alaska Dispatch, at [32].^J.J. MacNab, July 3, 2012, "Sovereign Extremist Injured in Texas Bomb Explosion", Forbes, at [33].^"Texas man reaches plea deal in pipeline blast case," Associated Press, June 3, 2013, at [34].^Oral order, Feb. 26, 2014, United States v. Chi, case no. 4:12-cr-00155-RAS-DDB, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas.^Judgment of Conviction, June 11, 2015, docket entry 237, United States v. Anson Chi, case no. 4:12-cr-00155-RAS-DDB, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas.^The charges were kidnapping and obstruction of justice Third Superseding Indictment, docket entry 215, May 16, 2012, United States v. Jonassen, case no. 2:11-cr-00163-JTM-PRC, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana (Hammond Div.).^Lu Ann Franklin, "Jonassen guilty of kidnapping daughter," July 19, 2012, Times Media Company, at [35].^Sarah Tompkins, "Officials: Man accused of kidnapping in Portage a part of extremist group," Sept. 27, 2011, Times Media Company, at [36].^Marisa Kwiatkowski, Feb. 20, 2013, "Kansas man sentenced to 40 years in kidnapping case," Times Media Company (Munster, Indiana), at [37].^Martin J. Jonassen, inmate # 11817-027, Federal Bureau of Prisons, U.S. Dep't of Justice.^Claire Galofaro, Aug. 17, 2012, "'Sovereign citizens' group rejects most government authority," New Orleans Times Picayune, at [38].^Rosen, Yereth. "Alaska couple admits to plot to kill federal judge and others"Reuters August 28, 2012^"Lonnie, Karen Vernon Sentenced In Militia Trials," Jan. 7, 2013, Associated Press, at [39].^Rebecca Palsha, Jan. 7, 2013, "Lonnie Vernon Gets Over 25 Years for Murder Plot," KTUU-TV News, Anchorage, Alaska, at [40].^Marcus K. Garner, "Gwinnett man pleads guilty to stealing foreclosed home," Sept. 10, 2012, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, at [41].^ abId.^Kevin Johnson, "Feds charge 'president' of sovereign citizen group," Sept. 18, 2012, USA Today, at [42].^Indictment, docket entry 1, Sept. 12, 2012, United States v. Turner, case no. 1:12-cr-00169-MHT-WC, U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama (Dothan Div.).^"Man in 'sovereign citizen' movement indicted," Associated Press, Sept. 18, 2012, as published by CBS News, at [43].^Carol Cratty, "Federal prosecutors bring tax charges against leader of anti-government group," Sept. 18, 2012, CNN, at [44].^ ab"The Sovereigns: Leaders of the Movement," Intelligence Report, Fall 2010, Issue # 139, Southern Poverty Law Center, at [45].^News release, U.S. Dep't of Justice, July 31, 2013, at [46].^Ryan Lenz, "Sovereign 'President' Sentenced to 18 Years in Federal Prison for Tax Crimes," July 31, 2013, Southern Poverty Law Center, at [47].^See generally James Timothy Turner, inmate # 14154-002, Federal Bureau of Prisons, U.S. Dep't of Justice, at [48].^Kevin Krause, "Man facing trial on federal tax charges in Fort Worth accused of trying to arrange hit on judge," Oct. 1, 2012, The Dallas Morning News, at [49].^Alice Wolke, "Elderly tax protester solicited judge's murder, DA says," Oct. 1, 2012, KDFW-TV/Fox News, at [50].^Scott Gordon, "FBI: Inmate Tried to Kill Federal Judge," Oct. 1, 2012, NBC/Universal, at [51].^Domingo Ramirez Jr., "Fort Worth man sentenced to 20 years for trying to hire hit man to kill judge," March 17, 2014, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, at [52].^United States v. Ballard, case no. 4:13-cr-00067, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas.^Order Granting Motion to Dismiss Indictment, April 10, 2014, entry 68, United States v. Ballard, case no. 4:11-cr-00038, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas.^Phillip Monroe Ballard, inmate # 16229-077, Federal Bureau of Prisons, U.S. Dep't of Justice.^WECT Staff, "911 operator talks about $300,000 request in exchange to pull over," Dec. 11, 2012, (C) 2012 WorldNow and WCSC, at [53].^Dec. 11, 2012, "911 operator talks about $300,000 request in exchange to pull over," WAFF-TV News, Huntsville, Alabama, at [54].^Nadine Maeser, Feb. 1, 2013, "Woman indicted by grand jury, claims herself as a "sovereign citizen", WECT-TV News, Wilmington, North Carolina, at [55].^Roger Dupuis, "Who is Glenn Richard Unger?", Jan. 20, 2013, Daily Courier-Observer (Massena & Potsdam, New York), at [56].^Indictment, Dec. 19, 2012, United States v. Unger, case no. 1:12-cr-00579-TJM, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York.^Robert Gavin, May 23, 2013, "Mental test slated for activist leader," Albany Times-Union, at [57].^Docket entry, Aug. 7, 2013, United States v. Unger, case no. 1:12-cr-00579-TJM, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York.^Robert Gavin, "Jury: Sovereign citizen 'elder' guilty of tax crimes," Oct. 21, 2013, Albany Times-Union (Albany, New York), at [58].^Robert Gavin, April 21, 2014, "'Sovereign citizen' quotes Bible, touts Maury Povich at sentencing," Albany Times-Union, at [59].^Glenn R. Unger, inmate # 20191-052, Federal Bureau of Prisons, U.S. Dep't of Justice.^Annual Business Report, Fiscal Year 2012, National Operations, pp. 24-25, Criminal Investigation, Internal Revenue Service, U.S. Dep't of the Treasury (May 10, 2013).^News Release, "Sovereign Citizen Sentenced to More Than Eight Years in Prison for Tax Fraud Scheme," June 14, 2013, Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Department of Justice, at [60].^Nevada pair plotted to torture and kill police^Arrest of 2 in Sovereign Citizen Plot to Kidnap Police Officers FOX News August 23, 2013^"Woman Takes Plea Deal in Sovereign Citizen Case," Dec. 12, 2013, KLAS-TV Channel 8 News, Las Vegas, Nevada, at [61]^Francis McCabe, Feb. 3, 2014, "Defendant pleads guilty to conspiring to kidnap cop," Las Vegas Review-Journal, at [62].^Francis McCabe, April 7, 2014, "Man sentenced to probation in Las Vegas for domestic terrorist plot," Las Vegas Review-Journal, at [63].^"Man 'seizes' eleven abandoned family homes in Ohio whilst the owners are out of town". Mail Online. 30 November 2013. Retrieved 9 February 2014. ^Gettys, Travis (6 December 2013). "Grand jury indicts Ohio 'sovereign citizen' accused of trying to steal 11 homes". The Raw Story. Retrieved 9 February 2014. ^Andrew Setters, March 17, 2014, "Accused home stealer tries to change guilty plea, gets jail instead," WLWT-TV News, Cincinnati, at [64].^"'Sovereign citizen' tax preparer gets 6 years in prison," Jan. 9, 2014, Chicago Tribune, at [65].^Kevin Murphy, "Glavin sentenced to jail," Feb. 13, 2014, Juneau County Star-Times, at [66].^John Glavin, inmate # 08025-090, Federal Bureau of Prisons, U.S. Dep't of Justice.^Suckling, Kieran. "A rancher's armed battle against the US government is standard libertarian fare". The Guardian. Retrieved 28 April 2014. ^ abcdefgDaniel Hernandez, and Joseph Langdon (13 April 2014). "Federal rangers face off against armed protesters in Nevada 'range war'". The Guardian. Retrieved 19 April 2014. ^Murphy, Vanessa (19 April 2014). "The Bundy militia, who are they?". KLAS TV Las Vegas News. Retrieved 19 April 2014. ^Flynn, Michael (16 April 2014). "Amazing footage captures Bundy's militia standoff with BLM & Police". The Independent, News, St. George Utah. Retrieved 19 April 2014. ^ abMacneal, Caitlin. "Harry Reid Calls Bundy Supporters 'Domestic Terrorists'". Talking Points Memo, TPM Media LLC. Retrieved 19 April 2014. ^Z, Jimmy. "Bundy Militia Protester Advocates Women As Human Shields". The 405 Media. Retrieved 19 April 2014. ^Allen, Jonathan (17 April 2014). "Bundy Ranch Standoff Emboldens Militia Groups". Retrieved 19 April 2014. ^Komenda, Ed (10 April 2014). "Militiamen make their presence felt in protest of BLM's livestock grab". Las Vegas Sun. Retrieved 19 April 2014. ^Allen, Jonathan (17 April 2014). "After Nevada ranch stand-off, emboldened militias ask: where next?". Retrieved 19 April 2014. ^"Political cause growing in Bundy's dispute with BLM". KLAS-TV Las Vegas. Retrieved 6 May 2014. ^"Three Men Convicted of Defrauding Customers Through Bogus Debt Elimination Scheme". Press release. FBI. Retrieved 5 April 2014. ^"http://www.ajc.com/news/news/police-activity-around-forsyth-courthouse/ngFsZ/". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. June 6, 2014. ^David Neiwert, "'Sovereign Citizen' Is Suspected in Georgia Courthouse Shooting," June 6, 2014, Southern Poverty Law Center, at [67].^See generally Dennis Marx v. Forsyth County Sheriff's Office et al., case no. 2:13-cv-00175-RWS, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia (Gainesville Div.).^Greg Botelho, Eliott C. McLaughlin & Jason Hanna, "Authorities: Georgia courthouse attacker prepared to inflict mayhem," June 6, 2014, CNN, at [68].^ abAnnie Sweeney & Jason Meisner, "Chicago woman's trial could get wild," Aug. 2, 2013, Chicago Tribune.^Jason Meisner, " 'Sovereign citizen' given 7 years in prison for bogus liens," Oct. 14, 2014, Chicago Tribune, at [69].^Cherron Marie Phillips, inmate # 45209-424, Federal Bureau of Prisons, U.S. Dep't of Justice.^"'Dr. Dino' facing new legal woes: Pensacola News Journal". Retrieved November 11, 2014. ^Kent Hovind January 2015 Court submission^Paul Hansen Court submission, January 2015^"Kent 'Dr Dino' Hovind trial: Guilty of contempt". Pensacola News Journal. Retrieved 2015-05-20. ^Robinson, Kevin (May 19, 2015). "Hovind cleared of all charges for now". Pensacola News Journal. Retrieved 2015-05-20. ^"Hovind's co-defendant gets 18 months in prison". Pensacola News Journal. August 21, 2015. Retrieved 2015-08-22. ^http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140714/accused-lower-pottsgrove-bank-robber-claims-to-be-a-sovereign-citizen^Carl Hessler Jr., "Lower Pottsgrove robber's 'undoing' was orange underwear", January 15, 2015, The Mercury at [70]^The Glades Episode GuideExternal links[edit]
Martin Armstrong Warns: The #1 Terrorist Group Is You, Domestic Citizens
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 03:04
Understand this now.As Jim Quinn explains,YOU are the enemy of the state.They don't give a shit about you. They treat you as sheep and cows to be sheared and milked. If you start questioning them, they will slaughter you. They have militarized the police forces and put you under 24 hour surveillance because they fear an uprising. There only a few hundred thousand of them and there are millions of us. A conflict is looming.
As Armstrong Economics' Martin Armstrong details,government talks about Islamic terrorists, but their number one fear is YOU.
The internment camps are for you, not Islamic extremists. Government CANNOT honor its promises so it will not even try.
They are confiscating money everywhere, doubling fines, and punishing people for insane things.
A neighbor received a ticket and a $200 fine for using a cell phone while driving. The use? Looking at the Google Maps. She even went to court with her phone records to prove she was not on the phone. The judge declared that she should have looked at that BEFORE she left. I suppose if you write down the directions and look at the piece of paper that is OK, you just can't look at it on your phone. That applies to even looking at the time on your phone.
The government claims it wants to eliminate guns to protect society. The problem will be that the criminals do not buy their guns at a store. They want to disarm the public because you are their number one fear as outlined in this discussion paper.
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Make President Obama drink his own urine while filming "Running Wild with Bear Grylls" in Alaska | We the People: Your Voice in Our Government
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VIDEO-Turkey combatting PKK under guise of targeting ISIS - YouTube
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 13:38
VIDEO-Chaos in Hungary as huge crowd of migrants force Budapest station to evacuate | Daily Mail Online
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 13:34
Budapest station was evacuated on Tuesday morning as hundreds of migrants tried to reach Vienna and MunichProtests were staged and about 100 police officers wearing helmets and wielding batons guarded the stationMeanwhile, one man was lucky to be alive after he was found hidden under a car bonnet by Spanish border policeMore than 100 people crammed into a rubber dinghy were rescued from the Mediterranean Sea by the Italian navy By Jenny Stanton For Mailonline and John Stevens for the Daily Mail
Published: 17:45 EST, 31 August 2015 | Updated: 16:47 EST, 1 September 2015
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Hundreds of angry migrants, some waving tickets and holding their babies in the air, staged protests outside a Budapest station on Tuesday and demanded they be allowed to board trains to Germany and Austria.
Hungarian authorities evacuated and closed the city's Eastern Railway Terminus when scuffles broke out between people storming their way onto carriages.
It came just hours after German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the EU's passport-free travel zone was under threat.
Meanwhile, migrants clambered through razor wire fences into Macedonia, risked their lives on rubber dinghies in the Mediterranean Sea, and one man even hid inside a red-hot car engine in a bid to get out of Morocco as the migrant crisis continued to spiral out of control.
Scroll down for video
Chaos: Migrants wave their train tickets and lift up their children in the air outside the station in Budapest, Hungary, during an protest
Crowds: In total, 1,000 migrants are still at the Budapest railway station hoping to leave Hungary and board trains to Austria and Germany
Hundreds of migrants staged protests outside the Budapest station demanding they be allowed to board trains to Germany and Austria
Migrants pictured scrambling to get on a train at the main railway station in Salzburg, Austria to continue their journeys to Germany
An announcement came over the loudspeakers at the station in Budapest on Tuesday morning after about 500 people tried to board a train to Vienna. It said: 'No trains will be leaving or arriving at Keleti station (Eastern Railway Terminus) until further notice.'
Several hundred migrants demonstrated following the closure and young men could be heard chanting: 'Germany, Germany', 'We want to leave', and 'Merkel'.
About 100 police officers wearing helmets and wielding batons guarded the station as people booed and hissed outside. One man held up a sign that said, in German: 'Please let us go!'
The station has reopened but only non-migrants are allowed in. Police are checking tickets, ID cards and relevant visas.
Fights broke out earlier in the morning among some of the migrants as they were blocked from getting on a train scheduled to leave for Vienna and Munich.
Violence: Scuffles had broken out earlier in the morning among some of the migrants as they were blocked from getting on a train
Evacuation: Migrants come face-to-face with police after being told to leave the station in Budapest, Hungary on Tuesday morning
Leaving: A woman and her two children were among 1,000 migrants ordered to leave the city's Eastern Railway Terminus in Hungary
Clashes: Migrants and police pictured at the railway station in Budapest, Hungary, after people were told to leave and it was closed
Families could be seen carrying their belongings from the train station after they were told to leave on Tuesday morning and it was closed
A migrant holds his head in his hands as the train station in Budapest is closed following earlier scuffles as migrants tried to board trains
MIGRANT IS FOUND HIDDEN IN SPECIALLY-MADE COMPARTMENT NEXT TO A CAR'S ENGINE BY SPANISH OFFICIALSCurled in the foetal position next to a car engine, this migrant was lucky to be alive after going to desperate lengths to try to smuggle himself into Europe.
The asylum seeker, thought to be from Guinea, West Africa, was found in a special compartment under the car bonnet as it crossed into the Spanish enclave of Ceuta from Morocco.
A man was found crammed into a compartment next to the engine of a car trying to cross into the Spanish enclave of Ceuta
Guardia Civil border police discovered him crammed between the engine block and radiator after noticing that the driver of the car appeared nervous.
He was taken to hospital suffering from the effects of the intense heat and fumes and doctors said he could have died if he had been there much longer.
Several say they spent hundreds of euros on tickets after police told them they would be allowed free passage.
Hassan, a 47-year-old Syrian, said he and two friends had each bought tickets to Germany for a total of 375 euros.
'They took 125 euros for each ticket to Munich or Berlin, then they stopped and forced us from the station,' he said.
Marah, a 20-year-old woman from Aleppo, Syria, who travelled with her family, said they had bought six tickets for a RailJet train that was scheduled to leave for Vienna at 9am on Tuesday.
'They should find a solution,' she said. 'We are thousands here, where should we go?'
When asked why the station was closed, government spokesman Zoltan Kovacs said Hungary was trying to enforce EU law, which requires anyone who wishes to travel within Europe to hold a valid passport and a Schengen visa.
Hungarian and Austrian authorities allowed trainloads of undocumented migrants to reach Germany on Monday. Czech police said they had detained 214 mostly Syrian migrants headed for Germany on overnight trains from Vienna and Budapest.
Austrian police, which has been on high alert for people-smugglers since 71 migrants were found dead in a lorry last week, said 24 young Afghans were rescued from a 'prison cell on wheels'.
The people, mostly aged around 16 or 17, were crammed inside a van like objects.
A police spokesman said they were 'crammed on top of each other into a very small space'.
They added: 'The windows and side doors had been welded shut, a grill had been welded to the inside of the windows which were sprayed in black paint. A locking bolt had also been attached to the doors on the outside. It was like a prison cell on wheels.'
Austrian police have stepped up checks on trucks and vans after the dead bodies of 71 migrants were found in the back of an abandoned truck on an Austrian motorway last Thursday.
Many of the 50,000 migrants who entered Hungary in August alone hope to travel onwards to countries in western Europe like Germany and Sweden, which invariably means transiting through Austria.
The Romanian driver in the latest incident fled after police pulled over the vehicle in Vienna. He was later apprehended with help of a police dog called Iceman. The 24 Afghans needed no medical treatment.
A further 49 Syrian migrants were rescued by Turkish fisherman last night, after they found themselves adrift in the Aegean Sea.
The desperate men, women and children were trying to make the hazardous crossing to reach Greece, but were so exhausted most needed help to cross from their dilapidated boat to the rescue boat.
A Turkish fishing boat rescues 49 Syrian refugees who were trying to reach Greece in the Aegean Sea in Izmir, western Turkey last night
Fishermen from Izmir sail from the fishing port to the Aegean Sea with the start of the fishing season, but cam across the stranded people
The 49 people on board including men, women and children, all fleeing poverty and starvation in their war-torn homeland of Syria
Those on board were already exhausted from their long journey from Syria, and needed to be helped from their boat onto the rescue boat
The nearly 50 refugees had found themselves stranded in the middle of the Aegean, while making the hazardous crossing to Greece
Europe is buckling under the weight of thousands of migrants and refugees arriving from war-torn nations in the Middle East and Africa
While many attempt to cross into Europe by water, crammed into dilapidated fishing boats, thousands more are forcing through land borders
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban will discuss the migration crisis with EU leaders in Brussels on Thursday, the government's website quoted his press chief Bertalan Havasi as saying on Tuesday
Many of the 50,000 migrants who entered Hungary in August alone hope to travel onwards to countries in western Europe like Germany and Sweden, which invariably means transiting through Austria
The EU executive is set to outline new plans next week to distribute refugees across European states, as well as the speed up the deportation of unwanted migrants
Crowds: Hundreds of migrants waited to board trains at Keleti Railway Station in Budapest, Hungary before the station was closed today
The Hungarian city's main international station was evacuated after hundreds of migrants tried to board trains to Austria and Germany
A migrant boy sits on his father's shoulders as they wait to board a train at Keleti Railway Station, Budapest before it closed today
The Schengen Agreement was signed by Belgium, France, German, Luxembourg and the Netherlands in June 1985, and created a passport-free travel zone. All 26 European countries that are part of the area have removed checkpoints between each other, creating a single external border
'HOW MANY MILLIONS DOES EUROPE WANT TO TAKE?' FARAGE SAYS CHECKS AT BORDERS SHOULD BE TIGHTENEDUKIP leader Nigel Farage says Britain should follow Austria's lead
UKIP leader Nigel Farage said Britain should follow Austria's lead in tightening up checks at borders to prevent illegal immigrants entering the country.
He told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: 'The EU have sent a message that anybody who comes across the Mediterranean or comes through Turkey, once they have set foot in an EU country they will be accepted.
'That's sent a message to hundreds of thousands of people that they can come.'
'Genuine' refugees had historically tended to be members of ethnic or religious groups fleeing for their lives, said Mr Farage.
But he added: 'The problem we have now is if you look at the definition of the EU's asylum policy, it includes anybody who comes from a war-torn country and it even includes people leaving extreme poverty.
'The problem we've got is potentially we've opened the door to an exodus of biblical proportions, meaning millions and millions of people. We've lost sight of what is a genuine refugee. How many millions does Europe want to take? That really is the question.'
Britain should offer refugee status to 'a few thousand people' from Syria but cannot provide an open door to migrants, he said.
'I think we are going to have to start doing what the Austrians did yesterday,' Mr Farage added. 'The Austrians stopped lorries and stopped cars and checked and found 200 people who were smuggled trying to come into their country.
'We are going to have to accept that crossing borders is going to get more difficult if we are serious about dealing with illegal immigration.'
The crisis has prompted the government in Budapest to reinforce its border with a razor wire fence and deploy thousands of extra police to try to funnel the flow of migrants to legal channels rather than allowing them through unchecked.
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban will discuss the migration crisis with EU leaders in Brussels on Thursday, the government's website quoted his press chief Bertalan Havasi as saying on Tuesday.
Orban will meet with EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, European Council Chairman Donald Tusk and European Parliament President Martin Schulz, as well as Joseph Daul, the chairman of the European People's Party.
Havasi added that leaders of the Visegrad Four countries - Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary - will hold an extraordinary summit in Prague on Friday.
Hungary's Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto told reporters on Tuesday that all migrants that come to the country will be registered and economic migrants will be sent back to the state from which they entered.
He also said Hungary, which has been struggling with a large influx of migrants in recent months, did not support the quota system for distribution, saying such a system only encourages migrants and smugglers.
'We plan to register all migrants regardless of the fact that we are not the first member state they enter. We will register everyone who submits the request for asylum and carry out the procedure,' Szijjarto said.
'If the decision is positive the refugee can stay, but if it is not positive we cannot give shelter to the economic migrants, we cannot bear that burden, so they will be returned where they come from.'
Desperate: A mother falls to her knees and begs police officers to allow her to enter Macedonia from northern Greece on Tuesday
Border: A woman and a young boy pictured entering Macedonia near Gevgelija after crossing the border with Greece on Tuesday morning
Line-up: Migrants have been trekking from the southern Macedonian border (pictured) near Gevgelija to the northern border with Serbia
A man pushes a friend in a wheelchair after crossing from Greece to Macedonia on Tuesday. There have been protests at the border
Crossing: A child pictured sleeping soundly as she is carried across the border into Macedonia from Greece on Tuesday morning
SLOVAK PRIME MINISTER REJECTS EU QUOTAS FOR REDISTRIBUTING MIGRANTS DESPITE MERKEL'S WARNINGSlovak Prime Minister Robert Fico said he will reject EU quotas
Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico has said he will reject any EU quotas for redistributing immigrants, adding 'we will wake up one day and have 100,000 people from the Arab world'.
Slovakia and the Czech Republic hope to forge a common position with Hungary and Poland on Europe's migrant crisis that would reject any EU quotas, the two countries' leaders said on Monday.
Czech Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka has invited his counterparts in the so-called Visegrad 4 group to discuss the crisis in Prague on Friday, a spokesman said.
The outcome is likely to be a hardline stance on the issue that the EU's central European states will take to an extraordinary meeting of EU interior ministers on September 14.
Hungary's status as an eastern outpost of Europe's passport-free Schengen area has made it a transit route for tens of thousands of migrants from the Middle East and beyond heading for western Europe via the Balkans.
The central Europeans have blocked proposals from Brussels that envisage EU member states accepting binding quotas to share out asylum-seekers crossing the Mediterranean to Italy and Greece. Since then, voluntary offers by member states to take in immigrants have fallen short of the needed numbers.
French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius has called their stance 'scandalous'. German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the future of Schengen would be in question if Europe cannot agree on redistributing refugees.
'We strongly reject any quotas ... If a mechanism for automatic redistribution of migrants is adopted, then we will wake up one day and have 100,000 people from the Arab world and that is a problem I would not like Slovakia to have,' Fico told a news conference shown live on television.
'We are prepared to do what is needed and what is within our possibilities, for people who really need help, separate them from economic migrants,' he added.
Czech President Milos Zeman said the country should reject quotas and increase its border protection, given the EU was unable to do so.
'The Czech Republic should take care of its borders on its own, it should expel illegal migrants ... even using the army, should it be needed,' Zeman said.
A total of 3,650 migrants reached Vienna by train on Monday, this year's biggest daily number, Austrian police said.
'Allowing them to simply board in Budapest... and watching as they are taken to the neighbour (Austria) - that's not politics,' Austrian chancellor Werner Faymann said.
Many of the migrants slept at Vienna's Westbahnhof station, hoping to continue their journey on to Germany, which last week eased asylum restrictions for Syrian refugees.
Austrian authorities said they were overwhelmed and police admitted they did not have the manpower to carry out effective controls, which would normally include sending migrants without proper travel documents back to Hungary.
Trouble at the train stations was matched by delays on the highways as Austrian authorities re-imposed border controls at main crossings from Hungary.
On Monday, Mrs Merkel said if Europe was not able to agree on how to share out the responsibility for refugees, the Schengen area of 26 European countries that have removed border checks between each other would be under threat.
Saved: The Italian navy pictured rescuing 118 migrants who were crammed onto a rubber dinghy off the coast of Libya today
Migrants who were rescued from a rubber dinghy off the coast of Libya earlier today are pictured boarding a vessel belonging to the navy
WHAT IS THE SCHENGEN AGREEMENT?Germany Chancellor Angela Merkel said the EU's passport-free travel zone is under threat
The Schengen Agreement was signed by Belgium, France, German, Luxembourg and the Netherlands in June 1985, and created a passport-free travel zone.All 26 European countries that are part of the area have removed checkpoints between each other, creating a single external border.The present-day zone covers all the EU member states '' except the UK, Ireland, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Romania and Croatia '' as well as Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Liechtenstein, which are all outside the EU.It is named after the town in Luxembourg where it was signed.She became the latest leader to raise concerns that hundreds of thousands of migrants crossing the Mediterranean to Italy and Greece are able to travel freely to other areas '' such as Calais '' because there are no borders.
She said: 'If we don't succeed in fairly distributing refugees then of course the Schengen question will be on the agenda for many.'
Under the rules people are able to travel freely between most of the countries on mainland Europe without having their passports checked.
But it means refugees entering Europe in Italy and Greece are travelling north and west before they claim asylum instead of making their applications in the first EU country they enter, as they are supposed to.
Germany has become a top destination for those fleeing Syria after it last week agreed to waive the so-called Dublin regulations that mean people can claim only in the first country they get to.
It has said it expects roughly 800,000 people to seek asylum there this year, nearly four times as many as last year and far more than any other EU country.
The European Commission has said the Schengen Agreement is 'non-negotiable'. A spokesman last night added: 'Schengen is not the problem.'
The EU executive is set to outline new plans next week to distribute refugees across European states, as well as the speed up the deportation of unwanted migrants.
Dimitris Avramopoulos, the EU migration commissioner, made the announcement today, saying that the new scheme could involve detaining those rejected until they return home.
European governments are straining to balance obligations to provide refuge with hostility among the public to mass immigration.
The Commission will put new proposals to interior ministers at an emergency meeting on September 14.
The emergency meeting will come five days after Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker is expected to outline plans to the European Parliament during his annual state of the Union address on Wednesday.
The EU has ramped up its plans in response to a massive surge in arrivals over the summer, while member states argue over how to spread the load.
Avramopoulos added that his discussions with governments gave him hope they would end objections to a distribution system for asylum-seekers that Juncker put forward in May and will next week present as a permanent EU mechanism.
'The majority of countries'...want to contribute,' he said.
'Some countries that were a bit reluctant'...have changed their mind because now they realise that this problem is not the problem of other countries but theirs as well.'
Iceland is considering allowing more people escaping the conflict in Syria to seek refuge in the country, after four per cent of the population joined a Facebook page calling for it.
Around 12,000 people from a population of little over 300,000 joined the social network page.
The government had earlier announced plans to take in 50 refugees from the Syrian conflict. That small number prompted Icelanders to sign up to the page which aimed to show the government there was public will to do more.
Prime Minister Sigmund David Gunnlaugsson now says a special council comprised of several ministers will map Iceland's resources to see how many refugees could be taken and said the government now had no fixed number.
On Tuesday, the Italian Navy rescued 118 people from a rubber dinghy in the Mediterranean Sea off the Libyan coast.
And in Greece on Monday, police fired a stun grenade at migrants protesting on the border with Macedonia and there were warnings that the tiny holiday island of Lesbos was being 'overwhelmed' by more than 13,000 migrants and refugees.
In Greece, the humanitarian relief organisation the International Rescue Committee has warned of the intense strain on the island of Lesbos.
On Saturday alone, 4,000 refugees and migrants arrived from the nearby coast of Turkey and there were further arrivals on Sunday and Monday.
The body of one of the 51 migrants whose lifeless bodies were discovered in the hull of a migrant boat north of Libya is buried in Italy
A coffin containing the body of one of the migrants who died while attempting to cross the Mediterranean from Libya is buried in Italy
The graves are marked with a simple cross and a number. Loved ones may never know the fates of their relatives who were found dead in the hull of the ship
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VIDEO-Hongarije: vluchtelingen zijn Duits probleem | NOS
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 13:16
De Hongaarse premier Viktor Orbn heeft in Brussel gezegd dat de Duitse regering een oplossing moet zoeken voor het vluchtelingenprobleem in zijn land. Want ze willen allemaal van Hongarije naar Duitsland gaan, luidt zijn argument.
Orbn kwam met zijn opmerking na overleg met de voorzitter van het Europees Parlement, Martin Schulz.
Hij kondigde aan dat zijn regering op korte termijn met een nieuw pakket maatregelen zal komen om de stroom asielzoekers bij de Hongaarse grens in te dammen. In dat kader noemde hij het hek dat al gebouwd wordt.
"Wij Hongaren lopen rond met grote angst, alle Europeanen doen dat omdat iedereen kan zien dat de Europese leiders niet bij machte zijn om de crisis onder controle te krijgen."
Verdrag van SchengenDe Hongaarse leider wees er nogmaals op dat zijn land zich houdt aan het Verdrag van Schengen waarin staat dat de buitengrenzen van de EU bewaakt moeten worden. "Iedereen die van buiten de EU binnenkomt, moet worden geregistreerd en dat doen we dan ook."
Parlementsvoorzitter Schulz hamerde er nog eens op dat er een nieuwe verdeelsleutel moet komen om vluchtelingen op te nemen. Maar dat komt volgens Orbn te laat omdat nu ingegrepen moet worden. "Een verdeelsleutel zou daarbij als een open uitnodiging gezien kunnen worden om hierheen te komen. Dat is onverantwoord."
Europese Commissie De Europese Commissie is juist vanochtend met het voorstel gekomen om vier keer zoveel asielzoekers uit de overvolle opvangcentra in Itali, Griekenland en Hongarije op te vangen als voor de zomer is afgesproken.
Commissievoorzitter Juncker noemt een getal van 160.000. Voor de zomer gingen de EU-landen knarsetandend akkoord met de opvang van 40.000 vluchtelingen.
Volgens hem is de migrantenstroom de afgelopen weken onbeheersbaar geworden, waardoor nieuwe maatregelen nodig zijn.
AUDIO-Threats to Kill Cops/Whites FYF911 Radio Show - YouTube
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 07:42
VIDEO-Photo shows a tiny victim of Europe's refugee crisis - CNN.com
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 06:08
Story highlightsU.N. refugee commissioner's response: "Terrible frustration"A toddler from Syria was one of 12 people to drown off TurkeyA haunting image of him has been shared with the tag "Flotsam of Humanity"But the water is lapping around his face and his body is lifeless.
The boy, in a red T-shirt, blue pants and tiny shoes with Velcro straps, was one of 12 people who drowned off Turkey and washed up on a beach Wednesday.
A photo of him lying alone and being approached by an official has been shared widely around the world, often with the Twitter hashtag #KıyıyaVuranİnsanlık or "Flotsam of Humanity" in Turkish.
How you can help in the migrant crisis
'No humanity'Some said they hoped the images of the boy lying on the beach and his limp body being scooped up by a rescue worker could be a turning point in the debate over how to handle the surge of people heading toward Europe.
Nadim Houry, Human Rights Watch deputy director for the Middle East and North Africa, described the pictures as "haunting."
"Biggest indictment of collective failure," he wrote.
"Shame on the world!" Burhan Akman tweeted from Turkey, adding in another post, "I see human but no humanity."
We don't know the boy's name yet, or where he came from, though the governor's office in Turkey's Mugla province said the boy and the other victims were among a group of Syrian refugees traveling on two boats trying to reach the Greek island of Kos.
Turkish rescue teams were able to save some people aboard the boats, the governor's office said. Two men and a child who were traveling in the group are missing.
More than 2,600 people have died trying to cross the Mediterranean to Europe this year alone -- making the area the most deadly migrant crossing point in the world, according to the International Organization for Migration, which warned last month that the number of deaths was soaring.
Nearly three quarters of the world's total number of migrant deaths this year have occurred in the Mediterranean, according to the IOM. And the number of deaths in the region so far this year (2,643) is nearly 20% higher than last year (2,223).
Some have drowned. Others have been crushed in stampedes. And some have been asphyxiated by boat engine fumes.
"In the last few weeks we have seen many deaths," Federico Soda, IOM's director for the Mediterranean region, said last week. "We think that this may be explained by the fact that the smugglers are becoming increasingly violent and cruel."
Things to know about the migrant crisis
Crisis spurs varied responsesMore than 350,000 people have arrived in Europe so far this year, seeking sanctuary from war or persecution or poverty or just seeking a better life.
There's been a wildly different response from governments and citizens, some wanting to take people in, others shutting them out.
"I react with terrible frustration," United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres told CNN Wednesday when asked about his response to the image of the toddler found dead on the Turkish beach.
"These people are forced to go on boats, they pay 4,000 or 5,000 euros and they die in these desperate circumstances. This doesn't make sense," he said. "We need to have a coherent response to this situation, and in my opinion, only Europe as a whole, based on solidarity, can give that response."
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban plans to meet with other members of the European Union on Thursday to figure out how to cope with the emergency. His nation -- a transit point for migrants trying to make their way north -- has responded by erecting a fence along its border with Serbia.
In Germany, the interior minister will address Parliament, after a planned asylum center was burned down.
The European Union foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, urged "united" action Wednesday and said the issue will be part of the next EU foreign ministers meeting on Friday and Saturday.
Czech authorities said Wednesday they've started to remove migrants traveling without documentation from trains. In some instances, Czech police have been marking and numbering the migrants with washable ink.
"We cannot let people without any documents and identification travel through the Czech territory. We have to question them. It's our legal obligation," said Katerina Rendlova, a Czech immigration official. "I know other states are not doing it, letting them pass freely to the next country, but we have laws that don't allow us to do it."
Caught in the middle are the desperate men and women, many with children in tow, who are fleeing in overcrowded, sometimes deadly voyages by land and by sea.
See the latest from CNN teams in the field
CNN's Hala Gorani, Ed Payne, Gul Tuysuz, Laura Perez Maestro and Ivana Kottasova contributed to this report.
VIDEO-NBC Frets Over GOP 'Taking Aim' at Clinton Aide | MRCTV
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 05:41
More in the cross-post on the MRC's NewsBusters blog.
On Monday, NBC's Today devoted a full report to Donald Trump and Republican members of Congress criticizing longtime Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin. Fill-in co-host Willie Geist declared: ''One of Hillary Clinton's top aides, Huma Abedin, is in the headlines this morning, with Republican lawmakers and Donald Trump taking aim at her position, and in Trump's case, her marriage.''
In the report that followed, correspondent Kristen Welker touted Abedin as one of ''Hillary Clinton's closest confidants'' and ''a second daughter.'' Welker then noted that the campaign adviser ''is facing some of the same ethical questions that are plaguing Clinton'' and ''became the target of an attack usually saved for candidates.''
VIDEO-Taylor Swift: 'I'm Just Happy '... We Live in a World Where Boys Can Play Princesses and Girls Can Play Soldiers' | MRCTV
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 05:28
When singer Taylor Swift gave her acceptance speech after she won Video of the Year at MTV's Video Music Awards (VMAs) Sunday night for her song ''Bad Blood,'' which shows women battling it out in military-style outfits equipped with weapons, she said she was glad to live in a world where ''boys can play princesses and girls can play soldiers.''
VIIDEO-NBC Treks to Arctic Alaska to Find 'America's First Climate Change Refugees' 'Living in Fear' | MRCTV
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 05:16
See more in the cross-post on the NewsBusters blog.
As part of President Barack Obama's visit to Alaska this week to promote climate change, Tuesday's NBC Nightly News showcased investigative correspondent Cynthia McFadden's trek to Arctic Alaska ahead of Obama to meet ''some of America's first climate change refugees'' due to rising seas near their villages.
In one of two teases, anchor Lester Holt told viewers to stay tuned for a look at ''[t]he vanishing happening at the top of the world'' with ''[f]amilies bracing to flee what would be the first American refugees of climate change.''
Hillary Clinton's Gefilte fish email - Business Insider
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 05:14
REUTERS/Eric Thayer
One day back in March 2010, Hillary Clinton sent a simple email to Richard Verma, then the assistant secretary of state for legislative affairs, and aide Jake Sullivan.
The subject line: "Gefilte fish."
The body of the email: "Where are we on this?"
State Department
Turns out they were somewhere.
Yair Rosenberg, a writer at Tablet Magazine, detailed the backstory. Michael Oren, the former Israeli ambassador to the United States, wrote in his memoir that Clinton, then the secretary of state, was trying to get Israel to sign off on a blocked shipment of Asian carp from the US. This type of carp is used to make Gefilte fish, a traditional Jewish dish.
Oren wrote:
"America signed its first-ever free-trade agreement with Israel back in 1985, but the treaty exempted certain Israeli products liable to be eradicated by their cheaper American counterparts. Apples, avocados, and oranges fell into this category, and, so, too, did the carp cultivated by Galilean farmers. Which is why four hundred thousand pounds of the frozen fish were denied entry into the Promised Land.
"Still, in the view of the possible diplomatic damage, I thought Israel should make this one exception, and told that to the Ministers of Trade and Finance. ... 'You think finding Middle East peace is hard,' Secretary of State Clinton blithely told reporters. 'I'm dealing with carp!' Netanyahu called to question me, 'What's all this carp stuff?'"
After days of back and forth, Oren wrote, a compromise was eventually reached, and the nine containers were allowed into Israel on a one-time basis.
The email was one in thousands of pages released by the State Department on Monday night. Of those emails, 150 were retroactively classified.
VIDEO-Nothing to See Here, Move Along: ABC Waves Goodbye to New Hillary Clinton E-Mails | MRCTV
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 05:10
See more in the cross-post on the NewsBusters blog.
Deeming it not pertinent for their viewership, ABC's World News Tonight refused to cover on Tuesday night the latest round of Hillary Clinton's e-mails being released by the State Department despite having briefly reported on them on Monday hours before they were actually released.
Joining ABC in their zero coverage of Clinton was Spanish-language network Telemundo (which also failed to mention the scandal on Monday's Noticiero Telemundo before the e-mails were made public).
VIDEO-CNN Spotlights 'Troubling Wave of Police Deaths' In Recent Weeks | MRCTV
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 05:01
[More in the cross-post on the MRC's NewsBusters blog.]
CNN's Brian Todd zeroed in on the "horrifying recent pattern" of criminals murdering police officers during a report on the 2 September 2015 edition of The Situation Room. Todd noted that "seven law enforcement officers [were] shot to death in a month '' 24 officers shot and killed so far this year across America,"and reported that "the string of killings of officers in recent weeks...has really got the law enforcement community on edge." He also pointed out that "police advocates say a saturation of media coverage has contributed to the spike."
VIDEO-Salmon spawns on Obama during Alaska visit - CBS News
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 04:55
President Obama got a bit more than he bargained for Wednesday when he visited a group of local fishermen and families at Kanakanak Beach in Dillingham, Alaska.
The president gamely donned a pair of orange gloves to examine some of the fish nets. He picked up one salmon without incident, and commented, "That's a nice-looking fish right there." But the second fish he held began squirting a steady stream of liquid toward his feet.
"Uh-oh, what's happening there?" He asked a woman standing nearby. She explained to him that the fish was spawning.
The president yelled over to the press, "Did you see that? Something got on my shoes. He was spawning a little bit, which - generally you don't want fish spawning on your feet."
Then he relayed a message from one of the women who was showing him the fish nets.
"She said he was happy to see me," the president said.
Later, he appealed to some of his Secret Service agents for a knife so he could help filet the fish that had been caught. They didn't have one for him.
(C) 2015 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.
VIDEO-Obama to propose building of new icebreakers to protect US interests in Arctic | Fox News
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 04:45
Published September 01, 2015President Obama will ask Congress Tuesday to speed up the construction of new icebreaker ships in order to protect U.S. interests and resources in the Arctic, amid growing concern that the U.S. has ceded influence to Russia in the strategic waters.
The proposals will be made on the second day of Obama's three-day trip to Alaska, during which the president has focused largely on climate change. The president's agenda called for him to travel to Seward, Alaska, where he planned to hike to Exit Glacier and tour Kenai Fjords National Park by boat.
Concerns about Russia's activities in the Arctic have grown after Moscow submitted a claim to the United Nations Aug. 5 for 463,000 square miles of the Arctic sea shelf, extending more than 350 nautical miles from the country's shore. The Arctic is believed to hold up to 25 percent of the world's untapped oil and gas supplies, and the U.S., Russia, and Canada are among the nations trying to assert their jurisdiction over the region.
Despite the immense stakes, the Obama administration acknowledged in a fact sheet about the president's proposal that the U.S. Coast Guard's icebreaker fleet is inadequate to handle a possible challenge from Moscow. Currently, the U.S. has just two working icebreakers, compared to Russia's 40. The New York Times, citing a White House fact sheet, said that Obama would also push up the expected acquisition date for a new icebreaker to 2020 from 2022.
Alaskan lawmakers had previously described the Obama administration's response to Russia's Arctic claim as a "strategic blunder."
"Meanwhile, in the face of this Russian military buildup, we are significantly reducing Army forces in our nation's only Arctic state," Sen. Dan Sullivan, R-Alaska told FoxNews.com earlier this month. "Right now, the Russians are playing chess in the Arctic and our Administration still seems to think it's tic-tac-toe."
Alaska Gov. Bill Walker also noted Russia's ongoing military buildup, telling the Times Monday, "They're reopening 10 bases and building four more, and they're all in the Arctic, so here we are in the middle of the pond, feeling a little bit uncomfortable."
In addition to building and restoring military bases, the Russian military has also conducted large-scale military exercises involving tens of thousands of troops, dozens of ships and submarines, and over 100 aircraft.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Click for more from The New York Times.
VIDEO-The President Addresses the GLACIER Conference - YouTube
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 04:37
Obama Promises to Build New US Icebreaker to Maintain Arctic Presence
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 04:29
US01:58 03.09.2015Get short URL
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) '-- President Barack Obama announced the construction of a new US Coast Guard icebreaker to boost America's force projection capabilities in the strategic Arctic Ocean region, the White House said.
"I'm announcing today'... a proposal to accelerate the construction of at least one additional heavy icebreaker, and to work with Congress to make sure that we are producing a sufficient fleet to meet our economic'... and national security needs [in the Arctic]," Obama stated at Seward Harbor, Alaska on Wednesday.
The Arctic region, Obama explained, was being transformed by global warming, which made its sea routes and mineral resources increasingly accessible.
"It's important that we are prepared'... whether it's for national security reasons, whether it's for commercial reasons, that we have much greater capabilities than we currently have," Obama noted. "These icebreakers are examples of something that we need to get online now. They can't wait."
The US President acknowledged that the United States had to keep abreast of changing strategic realities in the Arctic region."There's a whole series of strategic implications '-- economic and national security '-- and one of the things that we have to think about is how do we maintain our capabilities when it comes to maritime issues and commerce," Obama said.
The United States currently only operates two icebreakers in the Arctic whereas Russia had 40 of them, with another 11 under construction.
VIDEO-Kobane family in Hungary: 'We need Europeans to save us' - BBC News
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 04:26
In the Hungarian capital, Budapest, scuffles have broken out between migrants and the authorities outside Keleti station.
Under the station in the passenger tunnels and ticket areas there are crowds of people many with young children wondering when they will be able to move on.
The BBC's Huw Edwards spoke to Ismail, an IT engineer from northern Syria, who is camped at the station with his wife and baby daughter.
He said he fled Kobane to save his family.
VIDEO-Sovereign Citizens and Law Enforcement - YouTube
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 03:32
VIDEO-Armed Black Panthers to Texas Cops: 'We Will Start Creeping Up on You in the Darkness'
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 16:03
The statement was made just two weeks prior to the assassination of a Harris County deputy sheriff.
Shannon Miles, a black male, allegedly came ''creeping up'' behind Harris County Deputy Darren Goforth in the darkness on the night of August 28. While Goforth stood at a convenience store pumping gas into his patrol vehicle, Miles allegedly raised a pistol and shot him dead.
The comments, made by a leader of the Houston-based chapter of the New Black Panther Party, were captured on a short video clip (below) from the scene by the Houston Chronicle. The writers from the Chronicle made no mention of the threat in their article published that same day.
Not part of a chant, the march leader, wearing the rank of colonel, shouted directly to Harris County mounted deputies through a megaphone. ''You think we're not pissed off a bunch about y'all killing our sisters? You think it's okay? [We're] the wrong n***ers to mess with. You're gonna stop doing what you're doing, or we will start creeping up on you in the darkness.''
The rally, also covered by Breitbart Texas, took place at the Waller County Jail where inmate Sandra Bland took her own life by hanging herself with a trash bag after her arrest following a traffic stop in the town of Prairie View. She was accused of an illegal lane change and assaulting a police officer. After being left in jail by her family for three days, Bland hung herself.
In the video below, Breitbart Texas recorded several other violent statements towards police. ''The revolution is on'... Off the pigs,'' and ''Oink Oink'... Bang Bang!,'' was the message leveled by the heavily armed Black Panthers directly at Harris County deputies who had been asked by the Waller County Sheriff to come out to help keep the peace.
Two weeks later, a black man, Shannon Miles, allegedly walked up behind Deputy Goforth and shot him in the head and back fifteen times, according to a Breitbart Texas report on Miles' first court appearance.
The Waller County jail is located just over 30 miles from the Chevron station where Goforth was executed. The alleged killer, Shannon Miles, also attended the same university as Sandra Bland. It is possible that her arrest and subsequent suicide could have played a role in Miles' possible motivation.
Lana Shadwick is a contributing writer and legal analyst for Breitbart Texas. She has served as a prosecutor and an associate judge. Follow her on Twitter @LanaShadwick2.
Bob Price is a senior political news contributor for Breitbart Texas and a member of the original Breitbart Texas team. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX.
VIDEO-Should certain words get students a failing grade at Washington - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 15:42
PULLMAN, Wash. -Too harsh or respect the rules? That's the question on Washington State University's campus after some professors included a section in their class syllabi prohibiting certain language in their classes with potential consequences of failing a class.
On Monday, WSU released a statement addressing the syllabi issue and saying "open dialogue, vigorous debate, and free exchange of ideas are at the core of who the University is as a higher education institution."
Fall classes began last Monday and with those classes for some students came strict rules about language they cannot use in class. Some professors in the Department of Criticial Culture, Gender and Race Studies made it clear in their syllabi what language and terms students are not allowed to use, with a result potentially as dramatic as getting points docked or even failing a class.
"That's kind of harsh, but you live with it," says WSU senior, Anthony Lui. "There are rules in this world, you kind of have to follow them."
In one class the terms "illegal alien", "colored people" and "male" and "female" are cited in the syllabus as words that could gain a student an F.
"I think it's unfair. A lot of students look at it as illegal immigrants," says Mikayla Taflinger, a WSU freshman. "That's how we see it in our newsfeed, all over CNN and Fox News that's what they call them. Illegal immigrants."
WSU's Interim President Daniel Bernardo released a statement responding to the issue.
"Over the weekend, we became aware that some faculty members, in the interest of fostering a constructive climate for discussion, included language in class syllabi that has been interpreted as abridging students' free speech rights. We are working with these faculty members to clarify, and in some cases modify, course policies to ensure that students' free speech rights are recognized and protected."
The statement went on to say "no student will have points docked merely as a result of using terms that may be deemed offensive to some."
None of the professors who syllabi contained these rules were available for comment.
VIDEO-iran testimony James "Ace" Lyons
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 13:54
HTTP/1.1 200 OKServer: nginx/0.8.54Date: Wed, 02 Sep 2015 13:54:59 GMTContent-Type: text/htmlTransfer-Encoding: chunkedConnection: keep-aliveX-Powered-By: PHP/5.2.17
VIDEO-Putin says dump dollar '-- RT Business
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 13:02
Russian President Vladimir Putin has drafted a bill that aims to eliminate the US dollar and the euro from trade between CIS countries.
This means the creation of a single financial market between Russia, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and other countries of the former Soviet Union.
''This would help expand the use of national currencies in foreign trade payments and financial services and thus create preconditions for greater liquidity of domestic currency markets'', said a statement from Kremlin.
The bill would also help to facilitate trade in the region and help to achieve macro-economic stability.
Within the framework of the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) the countries have also discussed the possibility of switching to national currencies. According to the agreement between Russia, Belarus, Armenia and Kazakhstan, an obligatory transition to settlements in the national currencies (Russian ruble, Belarusian ruble, dram and tenge respectively) must occur in 2025-2030.
Today, some 50 percent of turnover in the EEU is in dollars and euro, which increases the dependence of the union on countries issuing those currencies.
Outside the CIS and EEU, Russia and China have been trying to curtail the dollar's dominance as well.
READ MORE: China approves usage of ruble instead of US dollar for border city
In August, China's central bank put the Russian ruble into circulation in Suifenhe City, Heilongjiang Province, launching a pilot two-currency (ruble and yuan) program. The ruble was introduced in place of the US dollar.
READ MORE: Time for Russia & Vietnam to think of switching to local currencies '' Medvedev
In 2014, the Russian Central Bank and the People's Bank of China signed a three-year currency swap agreement, worth 150 billion yuan (around $23.5 billion), thus boosting financial cooperation between the two countries.
It's now up to the State Duma, Russia's lower house of parliament, to ratify the president's bill to become law.
VIDEO-HIDDEN CAM: Hillary's National Marketing Director Illegally Accepting Foreign Contribution - YouTube
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 18:24
VIDEO-Migrants: angry scenes as hundreds stranded in Hungary | euronews, world news
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 17:37
There are angry scenes in Budapest as hundreds of migrants congregate outside the main international train station.
They have been prevented from travelling on to Western Europe, primarily Germany.
A government spokesperson said Hungary is enforcing EU law requiring travellers within Europe to hold a valid passport and a Schengen visa.
There were reportedly scuffles with the security forces inside the station. ''Look at my son,'' said one woman, whose child's head was bleeding. ''look at my son, he got hit with a baton.''
Photos: Nora Shenouda
Posted by euronews on 2015. szeptember 1.Hungary is primarily a transit country for migrants.There are those who say this is about politics, not people.
''You say you care about human rights,'' said one man, angrily waving his train ticket, ''we need a little bit of human rights, we don't need all out human rights, only a little bit, just security and basics''
'' We want to go to Germany, to let us to go to Germany,'' said another, ''the police caught us, there were no taxis, no trains to go on to Germany, why? We are humans.''
Temporary camps have appeared around the station, which was closed for a short time.
More than 140,000 have crossed the border from Serbia this year alone.
The question now is '' where do they go?
Euronews Correspondent Andrea Hajagos is at Keleti Station: ''The majority of these people are angry because they do not understand why they were allowed to pay a lot of money for their tickets, and then not be allowed to get on the trains.''
VIDEO: From Syria to Sweden: A migrant's story
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 17:14
As the war in Syria shows no sign of slowing, over four million Syrians have fled the country in the search for a new life.
Most of them, around three million, end up in crowded refugee camps and cities in neighbouring countries like Lebanon and Turkey.
Others follow what is becoming a well-worn route up through Europe to seek sanctuary there.
The BBC's James Reynolds follows the trail of a Syrian migrant called Nour, as she travels 2,000 miles through nine countries to fulfil her dream of applying for asylum in Sweden.
VIDEO-BOYFRIEND-Is The Virginia Shooting Hoax Blowing Up in the MSM's Face?
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 14:43
By Joe Wright
Gun control false flag crisis actors be warned: Facial recognition search software is going to bust you. Funny, the technology is easy enough to use on Facebook, one has to wonder why the mainstream media and police don't use it for these alleged mass shooter events.
Actually, this is an even bigger warning to the billionaire ''philanthropists'' who back aggressive gun control initiatives and are likely backing these staged ''events.'' You've hired horrible actors. You're going to get busted unless you back off. But, alas, we know your allegiance to the UN Small Arms Treaty requires you to push forward despite a growing number who know your game.
The latest reporter shooting hoax in Virginia is getting so easily torn apart by the conspiracy research community that the media's emotional staging of actors is becoming absurd.
The latest discovery is that Alison Parker's alleged fianc(C) Chris Hurst, who has only eight social media photos of him with Alison, is probably just her ''TV'' boyfriend. A guy named Daniel Wulz has been outed by facial recognition as her real-world boyfriend.
Some of the media's photos of Alison are taken directly from Wulz's Facebook account, which is now curiously unavailable.
Not surprisingly, Daniel Wulz, is also filmmaker. His YouTube channel described as ''The combined efforts of our work featuring Independent Films, Concert Videos and Film trailers.''
A video posted to his YouTube channel has the description ''Something I made when I was still learning film. Kinda crappy but whatever.'' Video below:
This might be the best insurance against economic collapse (Ad)Wulz posted a creepy new video to his YouTube channel today after a 7-month break, a shirtless rendition of a song ''For Alison.'' When will the media interview this guy who was so clearly a huge part of her life?
Many have already pointed out the acting background of the supposed father of the victim Alison Parker, Andy Parker. Perhaps it's a coincidence that his background readied him for appearing everyday on TV since and including the same day his daughter was allegedly murdered.
From the description to a recent Dutchsinse video: ''While playing the banker, Andy Parker is also simultaneously doing Broadway plays and TV commercials reaching back multiple years. To top it off, he's also a former politician ! He's real ''jack of all trades'' it would seem. Pictures of Andy Parker's latest performance as the lead star in Les Miserables! See screenshots from his 2013 performances here.''
All of these alleged mass shootings are immediately capitalized on by fake family members to call for more gun control. The media and the lawmakers are either completely in on the fraud or they're being played like fools. When will they wake up?
UPDATE: Another amazing compilation of the crisis actors working on this hoax.
VIDEO-2009 ABC Report Pictured Apocalyptic Climate Effects [VIDEO] | The Daily Caller
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 13:38
4695751
ABC News ran a news special in 2009 called Earth 2100, a program warning its viewers about the dangers of climate change.
ABC News correspondent Bob Woodruff says the show ''puts participants in the future and asks them to report back about what it is like to live in this future world. The first stop is the year 2015.''
A Harvard University professor says, ''We're going to see more floods, more droughts, more wildfires.''
Other voices can be heard saying that ''Flames cover hundreds of square mile'' and ''We expect more intense hurricanes.'' Another voice says, ''Well, how warm is it going to get? How much will sea level rise? We don't know really know where the end is.''
Describing dangerous temperature levels and dropping agricultural production, the news package brings in The Weather Channel's Heidi Cullen, who says, ''There's about one billion people who are malnourished. That number just continually grows.''
The doomsday predictions for 2015 go further and include $12.00 for a gallon of milk and $9.00 a gallon for gasoline, if there is any gas at all that is left.
Newsbusters notes that then GMA anchor Chris Cuomo, who teased the special at the time, said to Woodruff of the predictions, ''I think we're familiar with some of these issues, but, boy, 2015? That's seven years from now. Could it really be that bad?''
Woodruff replies, ''It's very soon, you know. But all you have to do is look at the world today right today. You know, you've got gas prices going up. You got food prices going up. You've got extreme weather. The scientists have studied this for decades. They say if you connect the dots, you can actually see that we're approaching maybe even a perfect storm. Or you have got shrinking resources, population growth. Climate change. So, the idea now is to look at it, wake up about it and then try to do something to fix it.''
VIDEO-CLIMATE CHANGE-k: Western-made Refugee Crisis - YouTube
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 14:39
Raw
72 College Historians Sign Letter Saying Jefferson Davis Statue In Capitol Is Offensive, Must Be Removed'....
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 14:36
OMG! Feelings were hurt!
Via Campus Reform:
College and university historians in Kentucky say that a statue of Confederate President Jefferson Davis in the state's Capitol rotunda promotes ''miseducation,'' even after the addition of a plaque explaining the statue's historical context.
In a letter addressed to Democrat House Speaker Greg Stumbo and other members of the Kentucky Legislature, 72 historians representing 16 Kentucky colleges and universities expressed their ''unambiguous opinion '... [that] the statue offers a visceral and potent miseducation,'' KY Forward reported Tuesday.
''The Davis statue conveys a powerful message,'' the letter claims. ''In the Rotunda, he is elevated in public space, on display as a beacon of Kentucky's highest ideals.''
The statue of Davis is one of five such likenesses displayed in the Rotunda, alongside Davis' Civil War counterpart Abraham Lincoln (who, like Davis, was born in the state), prominent 19th century politician Henry Clay, surgical pioneer Ephraim McDowell, and vice president Alben Barkley.
Keep reading'...
Hoax Week: Sockpuppet Aviation Expert Scams Pentagon | Veterans Today
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 14:35
Long on hair, tie and suit, short on ''aviation''
By Gordon Duff, Senior Editor
Of what has become the ''Hoax Week'' of all time, our second of 3, so far, offerings, we present ''David Cenciotti,'' the Pentagon's prime expert on military aviation. Problem is, after a background check, we find this guy, a sockpuppet internet rumor monger.
I have no idea how to deal with this, whether to laugh or cry. This is the top aviation expert in the world according to the Pentagon and we can't find proof he has ever even ridden on an airplane. I am still trying to get over the haircut.
I think he is a hairdresser. You do realize, of course, this is the ''Tony Montana'' hair style from the the film Scarface?
The story he is peddling has been debunked by Russia, by US and by even some of the world's media that was taken in. This is a ''triple dip,'' an attempt to peddle the same hoax a third time. God save us from these idiots.
Where do we begin? The photos are things that they received from Twitter, ''alleged'' photographs.
When I questioned (yelled at) Pentagon idiots yesterday, they admitted that they knew all along that Russia only has people who defend their naval base and that there are no others, no troops, no planes, nothing.
Here is what happened, when this hoax came out, sent to the Pentagon like this has been, criminal idiots at the Pentagon sent this to members of congress to try to suppress backing for the Iran nuclear deal, using a known lie.
This is treason. This is the Pentagon involved in American politics. I want everyone involved thrown out of the military as law requires. This is a court martial offense that mandates prison time.
Worse still, when the Pentagon sent out wild allegation now proven totally false, they gave them substantiation by telling members of congress they got them from a highly classified CIA report and not from internet alternative media websites.
Read this trash below and realize that it was sent to me by the Pentagon. Where is Jim Fetzer when I need him.
These photos suggest Russian Air Force jets and drones are already operating against ISIS in Syria
Photos allegedly taken over Idlib seem to prove Russian Migs, Sukhois and drones are currently operating against ISIS in Syria
Pictures allegedly shot over Idlib and posted on Twitter seem to suggest Sukhoi Su-27 (or derivative) Flanker, Mig-29 Fulcrum, Su-34 Fullback jets and Pchela-1T drone are operating in Syria.
During the past days, Flightradar24.com has exposed several flights of a Russian Air Force (even though the registration shown by FR24 is Syrian '' there has been a bit of confusion around this plane since if was first logged in Sept. 2014) Il-76 airlifter (caught by means of its Mode-S transponder) flying to and from Damascus using radio callsign ''Manny 6'', most probably supporting the deployment of a Russian expeditionary force.
Recent reports claimed Russia was in talks to sell Damascus some MiG-29s but the rumors were refuted by MiG CEO Sergei Korotkov.
If the pictures are real, the current makeup of the Russian detachment would include attack planes (Su-34), as well as some air-superiority ones (MiG-29 and Su-27) and UAVs (Pchela 1T '' a drone with a of range 60 km).
Whether the Russian Air Force operations against ISIS in Syria are coordinated with the U.S.-led coalition that daily conducts air strikes in the country is unclear. Let's hope they talk each other, otherwise one of the next days the Su-27s may make a close encounter with a stealthy US F-22 providing kinetic situational awareness to other coalition combat planes.
In the meanwhile the Kremlin denies the participation of Russia in the anti-ISIS airstrikes'....
We will update you as soon as more details confirming or refuting the deployment emerge.
Image credit: FR24.com and @green_lemonnn
Provided the pictures are genuine and taken in Syria in the last couple of days, they would really prove a Russian expeditionary force has already arrived in the country and started flying from an Assad-controlled airbase near Damascus as reported by some Israeli media outlets.
Related Posts:The views expressed herein are the views of the author exclusively and not necessarily the views of VT, VT authors, affiliates, advertisers, sponsors, partners, technicians, or the Veterans Today Network and its assigns. LEGAL NOTICE - COMMENT POLICYPosted by Gordon Duff, Senior Editor on September 3, 2015, With 0 Reads, Filed under WarZone. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.
Egypt Gas Find Could Shake Up Israel's Energy Plans - Business Opinion - Haaretz
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 14:00
Home > Business > Business OpinionThe need to preempt Iran and export gas to Egypt was the reason the government gave to push through its controversial plan for Israel's natural gas. Now, this reason may no longer exist.
Italian energy giant Eni announced Sunday the discovery of what is potentially the largest natural gas field in the Mediterranean, off the coast of northern Egypt. Although the precise quantity of gas is not yet known, its discovery is sure to dramatically change the market in the Mediterranean natural gas arena, especially...
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China and Russia are using hacked data to target U.S. spies, officials say - LA Times
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 13:47
Foreign spy services, especially in China and Russia, are aggressively aggregating and cross-indexing hacked U.S. computer databases '-- including security clearance applications, airline records and medical insurance forms '-- to identify U.S. intelligence officers and agents, U.S. officials said.
At least one clandestine network of American engineers and scientists who provide technical assistance to U.S. undercover operatives and agents overseas has been compromised as a result, according to two U.S. officials.
The Obama administration has scrambled to boost cyberdefenses for federal agencies and crucial infrastructure as foreign-based attacks have penetrated government websites and email systems, social media accounts and, most important, vast data troves containing Social Security numbers, financial information, medical records and other personal data on millions of Americans.
See the most-read stories this hour >>
Counterintelligence officials say their adversaries combine those immense data files and then employ sophisticated software to try to isolate disparate clues that can be used to identify and track '-- or worse, blackmail and recruit '-- U.S. intelligence operatives.
Digital analysis can reveal "who is an intelligence officer, who travels where, when, who's got financial difficulties, who's got medical issues, [to] put together a common picture," William Evanina, the top counterintelligence official for the U.S. intelligence community, said in an interview.
Asked whether adversaries had used this information against U.S. operatives, Evanina said, "Absolutely."
Evanina declined to say which nations are involved. Other U.S. officials, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss internal assessments, say China and Russia are collecting and scrutinizing sensitive U.S. computer files for counterintelligence purposes.
U.S. cyberspying is also extensive, but authorities in Moscow and Beijing frequently work in tandem with criminal hackers and private companies to find and extract sensitive data from U.S. systems, rather than steal it themselves. That limits clear targets for U.S. retaliation.
The Obama administration marked a notable exception last week when a U.S. military drone strike near Raqqah, Syria, killed the British-born leader of the CyberCaliphate, an Islamic State hacking group that has aggressively sought to persuade sympathizers to launch "lone wolf" attacks in the United States and elsewhere.
NEWSLETTER: Get the day's top headlines from Times Editor Davan Maharaj >>
Junaid Hussain had posted names, addresses and photos of about 1,300 U.S. military and other officials on Twitter and the Internet, and urged his followers to find and kill them, according to U.S. officials. They said he also had been in contact with one of the two heavily armed attackers killed in May outside a prophet Muhammad cartoon contest in Garland, Texas. Hussain is the first known hacker targeted by a U.S. drone.
The Pentagon also is scouring the leaked list of clients and their sexual preferences from the Ashley Madison cheating website to identify service members who may have violated military rules against infidelity and be vulnerable to extortion by foreign intelligence agencies.
Far more worrisome was last year's cyberlooting '-- allegedly by China '-- of U.S. Office of Personnel Management databases holding detailed personnel records and security clearance application files for about 22 million people, including not only current and former federal employees and contractors but also their families and friends.
"A foreign spy agency now has the ability to cross-check who has a security clearance, via the OPM breach, with who was cheating on their wife via the Ashley Madison breach, and thus identify someone to target for blackmail," said Peter W. Singer, a fellow at the nonprofit New America Foundation in Washington and coauthor of the book "Cybersecurity and Cyberwar."
The immense data troves can reveal marital problems, health issues and financial distress that foreign intelligence services can use to try to pry secrets from U.S. officials, according to Rep. Adam B. Schiff of Burbank, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee.
"It's very much a 21st century challenge," Schiff said. "The whole cyberlandscape has changed."
U.S. intelligence officials have seen evidence that China's Ministry of State Security has combined medical data snatched in January from health insurance giant Anthem, passenger records stripped from United Airlines servers in May and the OPM security clearance files.
The Anthem breach, which involved personal data on 80 million current and former customers and employees, used malicious software that U.S. officials say is linked to the Chinese government. The information has not appeared for sale on black market websites, indicating that a foreign government controls it.
U.S. officials have not publicly blamed Beijing for the theft of the OPM and the Anthem files, but privately say both hacks were traced to the Chinese government.
The officials say China's state security officials tapped criminal hackers to steal the files, and then gave them to private Chinese software companies to help analyze and link the information together. That kept the government's direct fingerprints off the heist and the data aggregation that followed.
In a similar fashion, officials say, Russia's powerful Federal Security Service, or FSB, has close connections to programmers and criminal hacking rings in Russia and has used them in a relentless series of cyberattacks.
According to U.S. officials, Russian hackers linked to the Kremlin infiltrated the State Department's unclassified email system for several months last fall. Russian hackers also stole gigabytes of customer data from several U.S. banks and financial companies, including JPMorgan Chase & Co., last year.
A Chinese Embassy spokesman, Zhu Haiquan, said Friday that his government "firmly opposes and combats all forms of cyberattacks in accordance with the law." The Russian Embassy did not respond to multiple requests for comment. U.S. intelligence officials want President Obama to press their concerns about Chinese hacking when Chinese President Xi Jinping visits the White House on Sept. 25.
After the recent breaches, U.S. cybersecurity officials saw a dramatic increase in the number of targeted emails sent to U.S. government employees that contain links to malicious software.
In late July, for example, an unclassified email system used by the Joint Chiefs and their staff '-- 4,000 people in all '-- was taken down for 12 days after they received sophisticated "spear-phishing" emails that U.S. officials suspect was a Russian hack.
The emails appeared to be from USAA, a bank that serves military members, and each sought to persuade the recipient to click a link that would implant spyware into the system.
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Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said the hack shows the military needs to boost its cyberdefenses.
"We're not doing as well as we need to do in job one in cyber, which is defending our own networks," Carter said Wednesday. "Our military is dependent upon and empowered by networks for its effective operations.... We have to be better at network defense than we are now."
Carter spent Friday in Silicon Valley in an effort to expand a partnership between the Pentagon, academia and the private sector that aims to improve the nation's digital defenses. Carter opened an outreach office in Mountain View this year to try to draw on local expertise.
U.S. intelligence officers are supposed to cover their digital tracks and are trained to look for surveillance. Counterintelligence officials say they worry more about the scientists, engineers and other technical experts who travel abroad to support the career spies, who mostly work in U.S. embassies.
The contractors are more vulnerable to having their covers blown now, and two U.S. officials said some already have been compromised. They refused to say whether any were subject to blackmail or other overtures from foreign intelligence services.
But Evanina's office, the National Counterintelligence and Security Center, based in Bethesda, Md., has recently updated pamphlets, training videos and desk calendars for government workers to warn them of the increased risk from foreign spy services.
"Travel vulnerabilities are greater than usual," reads one handout. Take "extra precaution" if people "approach you in a friendly manner and seem to have a lot in common with you."
Twitter: @ByBrianBennett
Twitter: @wjhenn
ALSO:
Obama to rename Alaska's Mt. McKinley as Denali
The busboy who cradled a dying RFK has finally stepped out of the past
Suspect held in 'senseless and cowardly' killing of deputy near Houston
Copyright (C) 2015, Los Angeles Times
Russian jets in Syrian skies - Israel News, Ynetnews
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 13:46
'Ž ×× ×—× ×• בפ×××בוק
Alex FishmanRussian Air Force Mig 31 (Photo: Reuters) A formation of Russian Mig 31's (Photo: Reuters) Russian Air force air craft (Photo: Reuters)
Gazprom may join Arab Gas Pipeline '-- Pipelines International
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 13:40
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Taylor Swift Is Dreaming Of A Very White Africa : Goats and Soda : NPR
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 13:21
In the video for "Wildest Dreams," Taylor Swift is all decked out in African colonial-era style. YouTubehide caption
itoggle caption YouTubeIn the video for "Wildest Dreams," Taylor Swift is all decked out in African colonial-era style.
YouTubeThe video for American singer Taylor Swift's new song "Wildest Dreams" has been viewed more than 10 million times in the two days since it debuted.
The video was shot in Africa and California.
This essay reflects the opinions of the authors, Viviane Rutabingwa and James Kassaga Arinaitwe.
Rutabingwa was born in Nairobi, Kenya, at the twilight of the Ugandan civil war to Ugandan parents. After completing her higher education in public health, she joined the Global Health Corps (GHC) and spent a year working as a Policy Support Officer in a maternal and child health project in rural western Uganda. In 2014, together with a team of three Ugandans and GHC Alumni, Viviane founded A Place For Books '-- an initiative to empower local communities by supporting village/town libraries across rural Uganda to advocate for literature.
Arinaitwe grew up in rural Uganda. He lost his parents and four siblings to infectious diseases '-- AIDS, cancer, measles, malaria. He was raised by his grandmother, who sent him on a 300-mile bus journey when he was 11 to seek financial help from the president to cover his secondary school fees. With help from the first lady, he continued his education and went on to attend Florida State University. Since graduating, he has worked to help at-risk youth in Uganda and has been a 2012-13 Global Health Corps Fellow and a New Voices Fellow at the Aspen Institute as well.
In it, we see two beautiful white people falling in love while surrounded by vast expanses of beautiful African landscapes and beautiful animals '-- a lion, a giraffe, a zebra.
Taylor Swift is dressed as a colonial-era woman on African soil. With just a few exceptions, the cast in the video '-- the actors playing her boyfriend and a movie director and his staff '-- all appear to be white.
We are shocked to think that in 2015, Taylor Swift, her record label and her video production group would think it was OK to film a video that presents a glamorous version of the white colonial fantasy of Africa. Of course, this is not the first time that white people have romanticized colonialism: See Louis Vuitton's 2014 campaign, Ernest Hemingway's Snows of Kilimanjaro, the 1962 film Lawrence of Arabia and of course Karen Blixen's memoir Out of Africa.
But it still stings.
Here are some facts for Swift and her team: Colonialism was neither romantic nor beautiful. It was exploitative and brutal. The legacy of colonialism still lives quite loudly to this day. Scholars have argued that poor economic performance, weak property rights and tribal tensions across the continent can be traced to colonial strategies. So can other woes. In a place full of devastation and lawlessness, diseases spread like wildfire, conflict breaks out and dictators grab power.
Swift's "Wildest Dreams" are a visual representation of what the Kenyan author Binyavanga Wainaina writes about in his Granta Magazine essay, "How to Write About Africa."
"In your text, treat Africa as if it were one country. It is hot and dusty with rolling grasslands and huge herds of animals and tall, thin people who are starving. Or it is hot and steamy with very short people who eat primates. Don't get bogged down with precise descriptions. Africa is big: fifty-four countries, 900 million people who are too busy starving and dying and warring and emigrating to read your book. The continent is full of deserts, jungles, highlands, savannahs and many other things, but your reader doesn't care about all that, so keep your descriptions romantic and evocative and unparticular."
Why be encumbered with the African people or show them in your "Wildest Dreams" video when they are busy mutilating each other and their genitals?
The bigger problem is that many Americans have never had an African history lesson. So we don't totally blame Taylor Swift, but the people behind the video should have done a little more research. They should have wondered how Africans would react.
To those of us from the continent who had parents or grandparents who lived through colonialism (and it can be argued in some cases are still living through it), this nostalgia that privileged white people have for colonial Africa is awkwardly confusing to say the least and offensive to say the most. Allison Swank in her critique of the 1985 movie Out of Africa explains it well when she considers the character of Karen Blixen, portrayed by Meryl Streep: "The nostalgia her character creates for a time when an elegant, strong white woman could run a farm in Africa covers up the ugliness of that [colonial] idea. It undermines key colonial truths, like the fact that her 'strength,' or privilege, relies on the colonial order."
Across the continent, we are in the middle of an exciting African boom and a technological and leadership renaissance of sorts, led by the children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren of the formerly colonized and enslaved. Waterfalls and mountains and majestic animals do not represent a full picture of our homelands.
Swift's music is entertaining for many. She should absolutely be able to use any location as a backdrop. But she packages our continent as the backdrop for her romantic songs devoid of any African person or storyline, and she sets the video in a time when the people depicted by Swift and her co-stars killed, dehumanized and traumatized millions of Africans. That is beyond problematic.
And then she decided to donate the proceeds from advertisements linked to her video to the charity African Parks Foundation of America. If you travel to some of Africa's parks, you'll see the rangers and guides are black Africans.
So why not show them in the video?
James Kassaga Arinaitwe is anAspen Institute New VoicesFellow and a Global Fellow atAcumen. He worked as a special projects manager atLabourNet, an organization in Bangalore, India, that seeks to improve the lives of workers. He tweets @JamesArinaitwe
Viviane Rutabingwa is a public health professional with a focus on the uninsured and refugees. She is aGlobal Health Corpsalumni and a founding member ofA Place For Books.She tweets @Rootsi
Teen Boy Will Be Charged As Adult For Having Naked Pics of a Minor: Himself - Hit & Run : Reason.com
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 12:57
ABC 11A North Carolina 17-year-old caught in a sexting scandal faces charges of sexually exploiting a minor that could land him in jail for up to 10 years, since the law considers him an adult. But one of the minors he supposedly exploited is himself­'--which raises an obvious question: how can a teen be old enough to face adult felony charges, but not old enough to keep a nude picture of himself on his phone?
Unfortunately, that's the Kafka-esque nightmare in which Fayetteville-area high schooler Cormega Copening finds himself after exchanging private nude photos with his girlfriend'--with whom he is legally allowed to have sex, but not to sext.
I wrote about Copening's story on Tuesday. Since then, I've learned new information that makes the local sheriff's office's actions seem even more ludicrous.
But first, to recap: Copening and his girlfriend'--now identified as Brianna Denson'--are like other teenagers in that they have more than a passing interest in sex. Indeed, when they were 16, they exchanged racy sexy photos via text message. Denson sent pictures to Copening, and Copening sent pictures to Denson. It appears that no one else saw the pictures until local authorities searched Copening's phone and discovered them.
Why did they search his phone? It's not clear, but local news reports claimed that it had nothing to do with the sexts themselves. The Cumberland County Sheriff's Office did not respond to a request for comment. According to fayobserver.com, there is no record of a search warrant being issued for Copening's phone.
Both teens were charged with sexual exploitation. Denson pleaded guilty to a lesser charge and was given 12 months of probation.
Copening, however, is still facing two counts of second-degree sexual exploitation and three counts of third-degree exploitation. As Ricochet's Tom Meyer points out, the third-degree charges'--which constitute a majority of the total charges'--actually stem from the pictures Copening had of himself. The implication is clear: Copening does not own himself, from the standpoint of the law, and is not free to keep sexually-provocative pictures, even if they depict his own body.
But consider this: North Carolina is one of two states in the country (the other is progressive New York) that considers 16 to be the age of adulthood for criminal purposes. This mean, of course, that Copening can be tried as an adult for exploiting a minor'--himself.
I discovered this when I asked Fayetteville Observer Executive Editor Mike Adams about his publication's decision to release the names of the teens (something countless other local news reports did as well). He explained to me that it's the company's policy to publish the names of adults charged with felony crimes, which includes Copening and Denson, in this case. But The Observer didn't fully comprehend that Copening and Denson were also the victims'--and, by some bizarre quirk of the law, minors in a different sense'--until after its original reporting on the issue had already been published.
''I don't think sexting was considered when this sexual exploitation law was put on the books,'' Adams told me.
Indeed. Maybe the legislature should revisit the issue. In the meantime, there is still no excuse for local cops to pursue charges against Copening. They have already humiliated him and damaged (perhaps irreversibly) his high school football career over mildly worrisome behavior that should not even constitute a crime. Cumberland County should exercise some discretion'--perhaps some maturity as well'--and let this matter go.
The Observer's Paul Woolverton also covered the insanity of North Caorlina's sexual exploitation law as applied in this case. Read his excellent story here.
Robby Soave is a staff editor at Reason.com.
Obama holding a salmon: 'I got it on my shoes'...he was spawning'....He was happy to see me' [photos] | Twitchy
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 04:53
Share on Facebook11 SHARES
Great pool report or greatest pool report? #spawning
'--Arden Farhi (@ArdenFarhi) September 02, 2015So this just happened'...
While President Obama was visiting with fisherwomen in rural Dillingham, Alaska, he was '... um '... well, just read it:
Pool report from Alaska where POTUS is holding a salmon: POTUS yells "I got it on my shoes'...he was spawning'....He was happy to see me"
'-- Arden Farhi (@ArdenFarhi) September 2, 2015
potus reax after fish had a moment: "generally you don't want fish spawning on your shoes'... he was happy to see me" pic.twitter.com/QcSMJ7kXV2
'-- Justin Sink (@justinsink) September 2, 2015
A salmon just spawned on the commander in chief's show. Obama says the fish told him he likes him pic.twitter.com/nmwJ351COU
'-- Josh Lederman (@joshledermanAP) September 2, 2015
Fisherwomen on beach in Dillingham show Pres Obama the salmon they caught. pic.twitter.com/99pqxbGjaW
'-- Mark Knoller (@markknoller) September 2, 2015
.@dougmillsnytObama looks over some drying salmon as he meets w/ fisherman in Dillingham, Alaska pic.twitter.com/p0wiEstCoS
'-- Michael Tackett (@tackettdc) September 2, 2015
Fish, like the media, can't control their excitement around President Obama?
***
Related:
President Selfie Stick is back with new 'travelogue' hyping global warming from Alaska
'Mockery?' White House getting 'exactly what it wanted' from Obama's selfie stick video
How dangerous is 'handing Obama a selfie stick'? Allahpundit has the disturbing answer
'Nero and his fiddle ain't NOTHING!' Sorry, world: Obama's busy with his selfie stick
Follow @twitchyteam
So what? Five Chinese Navy ships are operating in Bering Sea off Alaska coast
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 04:52
(C) Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah/ReutersChinese navy warships arrive in Sudan in August as part of military cooperation between the two countries. On Wednesday, the Pentagon said five Chinese navy ships have been seen off the coast of Alaska.
Five Chinese navy ships are currently operating in the Bering Sea, off the coast of Alaska, the first time the U.S. military has seen such activity in the area, Pentagon officials said Wednesday.The officials said they have been aware in recent days that three Chinese combat ships, a replenishment vessel and an amphibious ship were in the vicinity after observing them moving toward the Aleutian Islands, which are split between U.S. and Russian control.
They said the Chinese ships were still in the area, but declined to specify when the vessels were first spotted or how far they were from the coast of Alaska, where President Barack Obama is winding up a three-day visit.
"This would be a first in the vicinity of the Aleutian Islands," one defense official said of the Chinese ships. "I don't think we'd characterize anything they're doing as threatening." The Pentagon official confirmed that the five ships were operating in international waters.
Pentagon officials also said there was no information suggesting the Chinese ships had gone through the Bering Strait, a narrow waterway north of the sea that abuts Alaska.
China's defense ministry couldn't be reached to comment.
The presence of the Chinese ships so close to U.S. shores is the latest demonstration of how China's military is rapidly expanding its operations far from its own coast to protect the nation's growing global interests.The Chinese naval activity comes as Mr. Obama visits Alaska and the Arctic region to highlight climate change. The naval operation also comes just before Chinese President Xi Jinping presides over a World War II Victory Day parade on Thursday that the U.S. and its allies fear is being used to showcase China's new military strength and ambition.
Mr. Xi is heading to the U.S. in late September for a state visit, which has already been overshadowed by tensions over Chinese military activity, including alleged cyberattacks on the U.S. and island-building in the South China Sea.
China says its military activities aren't designed to threaten any other nation but are expanding in tandem with its economic power, as well as its interests and responsibilities around the world.
The Pentagon official said there were a "variety of opinions" on how to interpret the Chinese ships' deployment.
"It's difficult to tell exactly, but it indicates some interest in the Arctic region," the official said. "It's different."
China has shown growing interest in using the so-called Northern Sea Route to transport goods between Asia and the West via the Arctic in recent years as melting polar ice has eased access for shipping. The route can take several days less than the journey via the Suez Canal.
The first Chinese vessel to sail the entire Northern Sea Route was an icebreaker called the Snow Dragon in 2012 and some Chinese commercial ships have used the route since, according to state media.
Beijing also has shown growing interest in exploiting energy resources in the Arctic region and in 2013 became a permanent observer to the Arctic Council, whose members are Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden and the U.S.
A search of Chinese state media and military statements online revealed no record of any previous naval deployment to the Bering Sea.
China and Russia held joint naval exercises off the Russian Pacific coast - about 2,000 miles west of the Bering Sea - between August 20 and 28, according to the official Xinhua News Agency.
Seven Chinese ships took part, including two destroyers, two frigates, two landing ships and one supply ship, Xinhua said but it gave no details about where the vessels went afterward.
China's navy confined itself to patrolling the nation's coast for the first five decades after the Communist takeover in 1949. But in the past few years, it has ventured deep in the Pacific and Indian Oceans and even the Mediterranean Sea.
The Chinese navy has taken part in antipiracy patrols in the Gulf of Aden since 2008 and held joint naval drills with Russia in the Mediterranean in May. Last year, Chinese navy ships made their debut at U.S.-led Rim of the Pacific, or Rimpac, joint naval drills in Hawaii.
U.S. officials said an uninvited Chinese spy ship observed the Rimpac drills from international waters just off Hawaii. China's defense ministry said at the time its ship operations complied with international law.
Leadership | Rapid7
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 04:51
Executive LeadershipCorey E. ThomasPresident & Chief Executive OfficerIn addition to being President and CEO, Corey is also a member of the Rapid7 board of directors. He has more than 15 years of experience in leading companies to the next stage of growth and innovation. His previous positions include VP of Marketing at Parallels, Inc., a virtualization technology company, Group Project Manager of the Microsoft Server and Tools division, launching the worldwide availability of SQL Server 2005 and steering product planning for Microsoft's data platform, and a consultant at Deloitte Consulting. Corey received a B.E. in electrical engineering and computer science from Vanderbilt University and a MBA from Harvard Business School.
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Steven GatoffChief Financial OfficerSteven brings more than 20 years of leadership experience and an accomplished track record of success in building organizations, driving change, and increasing stockholder value for technology companies. Prior to joining Rapid7, Steven was CFO at iPass, Inc., a cloud-based mobility management company. Prior to that, Steven held financial executive roles at United Online, Inc., Sterling Commerce, and VeriSign, Inc., and spent nearly a decade in investment banking with Morgan Stanley, Credit Suisse First Boston and Bear Stearns. He is a CPA and received a B.S. in business administration and accounting from the University of Vermont and a MBA from Columbia University.
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Lee WeinerSenior Vice President, Products & EngineeringLee brings a wealth of security and product leadership experience to Rapid7, where he is responsible for leading the direction and delivery of Rapid7's entire product portfolio. Before becoming SVP of Products & Engineering he was VP of Products at LogMeIn, Inc., a provider of cloud-based remote connectivity solutions. He has also held leadership roles at several software security firms, including Netegrity, Inc., IMlogic, Inc., and Symantec Corporation. Lee received a B.A. from the University of Massachusetts.
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Tas GiakouminakisCo-Founder & Chief Technical OfficerTas leads the development and integration of Rapid7's award-winning solutions, driving the technical direction to enable customers through quality, simplicity, and innovation. Prior to founding Rapid7, Tas helped form Percussion Software, where he led the development of Percussion's first product. He has also developed software in the security and risk areas for CitiCorp.
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Richard MoseleySenior Vice President, Global SalesRichard brings a strong background in global sales leadership and experience in high-growth environments to his current role at Rapid7. Previously, he worked at Quest Software, an enterprise application management solutions provider, as Vice President, Data Protection, for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and Asia Pacific. He received a B.Sc. double degree in law and accounting from Oxford Brookes University in England.
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Christina LuconiChief People OfficerChristina leads Rapid7's strategic people initiatives, focusing on the entire employee lifecycle. She has a leading approach to human resources and a strong commitment to recruiting stellar talent, corporate culture, and acquisition integration. Prior to joining Rapid7, Christina was the founder of People Innovations, a consulting firm focused on the creation of innovative people strategies. Her other previous positions include Chief People Officer at @stake (a professional services security firm she helped build that was eventually acquired by Symantec), and VP of People Strategy at Sapient Corporation. She holds a B.A. in Psychology from George Washington University and an M.S. in organizational administration from Boston University.
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Mike McKeeSenior Vice President, Services & Customer SuccessIn his current role Mike helps companies understand security risk, build strong security programs, and successfully deploy Rapid7 solutions. He brings a broad business background to Rapid7, through his previous experience as Senior Vice President, CAD Operations & Strategy at PTC, Inc., and his roles at HighWired.com, Broadview Associates, Ltd., McKinsey & Company, and Goldman Sachs. Mike also played professional hockey for the Quebec Nordiques (now the Colorado Avalanche). Mike received a B.A. in economics and politics from Princeton University and a MBA from Harvard Business School.
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Carol MeyersChief Marketing OfficerCarol brings extensive marketing and sales expertise to her role at Rapid7, along with proven success driving technology companies to growth. Previously, she served as CMO at LogMeIn, Inc. and Unica Corporation (acquired by IBM), and VP of Sales for Shiva Corporation (acquired by Intel), and has held roles in sales, marketing and finance at Lotus (acquired by IBM) and GE. In addition to Carol's role as a marketing executive, she also serves on the advisory boards of DUO Security, SocialRep, and WordStream, and is on the board of directors for MineralTree.
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HD MooreChief Research OfficerHD is responsible for leading Rapid7 research into real-world threats and providing guidance on how to address them. In addition, he drives technical innovation across Rapid7's products and services, applying technology to the challenge of identifying and defending against current and emerging threats, as well as heading the development of experimental prototypes and free tools. He is the creator of Metasploit, the world's leading open source penetration testing framework, and remains deeply involved in Metasploit's evolution. With more than 15 years of professional security experience and a breadth of technical knowledge, he was named one of the 50 most powerful people in technology.
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Richard PerkettVice President, Product Management & EngineeringRich leads global product development for Rapid7'' encompassing Nexpose, Metasploit, AppSpider and UserInsight '' and also oversees the introduction of new products into the marketplace. He has more than 20 years of experience in product development. He was previously at RSA, where he was responsible for leading the global engineering organization for its Authentication and Identity Protection and Verification products. Prior to joining RSA, Rich was CTO and co-founder of Salesnet, Inc.
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Board of DirectorsAlan MatthewsCo-Founder & ChairmanAlan co-founded Rapid7 in 2000 and served as CEO from 2004 to 2009. Previously, Alan was a consultant to the investment banking group at Merrill Lynch. He has also developed mortgage-backed securities software at First Boston, coordinated and operated a computer graphics lab at HBO/Time Warner, and served as a programmer and designer for the VM operating system at IBM in the United Kingdom.
Alan Matthews has served as the chairman of our board of directors since July 2008.
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Corey E. ThomasPresident & Chief Executive OfficerIn addition to being President and CEO, Corey is also a member of the Rapid7 board of directors. He has more than 15 years of experience in leading companies to the next stage of growth and innovation. His previous positions include VP of Marketing at Parallels, Inc., a virtualization technology company, Group Project Manager of the Microsoft Server and Tools division, launching the worldwide availability of SQL Server 2005 and steering product planning for Microsoft's data platform, and a consultant at Deloitte Consulting. Corey received a B.E. in electrical engineering and computer science from Vanderbilt University and a MBA from Harvard Business School.
Corey Thomas has served as our President and Chief Executive Officer and as a member of our board of directors since October 2012.
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Michael J. BerryChief Financial Officer, InformaticaMike has served on the board of directors since 2012. He is EVP and CFO of Informatica Corporation, a provider of data integration software, and has previously held financial leadership positions at IO Data Centers, SolarWinds, Inc., and i2 Technologies, Inc. Mike received a B.A. in finance from Augsburg College and a MBA in finance from the University of St. Thomas.
Michael Berry has served as a member of our board of directors since November 2012.
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Ben HolzmanManaging Director, Bain Capital VenturesBen has served as a member of the board of directors since 2008. Prior to joining Bain Capital, Ben held leadership positions with a wide range of technology companies. His previous roles include VP of Sales Operations at Iron Mountain Incorporated, venture investor with Fidelity Ventures, and consultant at McKinsey and Company. He received a B.S. in biomedical and electrical engineering from Duke University and a MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management.
Benjamin Holzman has served as a member of our board of directors since August 2008.
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Tim McAdamGeneral Partner, Technology Crossover Ventures (TCV)Tim has served as a member of the board of directors since 2011. He has spent more than 20 years in the venture capital industry and has extensive experience in technology investing. Before joining Technology Crossover Ventures he spent 10 years at Trinity Ventures. He received a B.A. in classics from Dartmouth College and a MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
Timothy McAdam has served as a member of our board of directors since November 2011.
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Ben NyeManaging Director, Bain Capital VenturesBen has served as a member of the board of directors since 2008. He leads the technology and infrastructure investing efforts for Bain Capital Venture Partners, and is the CEO of VMTurbo. His previous positions include SVP at Veritas Software Corporation, COO and CFO of Precise Software Solutions, Ltd., and director of SolarWinds. He serves on the boards of directors of several private companies, including AppNeta, AppAssure and VMTurbo. Ben received a B.A. in government from Harvard College and a MBA from Harvard Business School.
J. Benjamin Nye has served as a member of our board of directors since August 2008.
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Jack SweeneyChief Executive Officer, SevoneJack has been a member of the board of directors since 2010. In addition to serving as CEO of SevOne, Jack is an Operating Partner at Bain Capital Venture Partners, LLC. His previous roles include CEO at Axeda Corporation and CEO at Apparent Networks. He attended the Stanford University Executive Program and received a B.S. in management from Bridgewater State College.
John Sweeney has served as a member of our board of directors since May 2010.
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Chris YoungSenior Vice President and General Manager of Intel SecurityChris has served as a member of the board of directors since 2011. Chris joined Intel from Cisco Systems, Inc., where he was SVP of the Security and Government Group. Prior to that, he held executive roles at VMware, Inc., RSA, and America Online, Inc. Earlier in his career he founded Cyveillance, Inc., an internet monitoring and threat intelligence company, and also spent several years in various advisory positions with Mercer Management Consulting. He received a B.A. from Princeton University and a MBA from Harvard Business School.
Christopher Young has served as a member of our board of directors since January 2011.
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Hackers could use baby monitors to watch your kids too, security experts warn - CNET
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 04:48
Security researchers warn that hackers could use baby monitors to watch your children sleep as well.
Steven Musil/CNETAs if caring for a baby wasn't stressful enough, security researchers have now found that several models of baby monitors are susceptible to hacking too.
The research, conducted by cybersecurity company Rapid7 and released Wednesday, looked at a range of products, both in capability and price, that stream video of babies in their cribs over to screens monitored by parents and other caregivers. The company found that seven of them had flaws that could let hackers see that video stream too.
Experts said the flaws are one more example of the lack of security in the realm of gadgets that can communicate with the Internet, a trend known as the "Internet of Things." Whether it's a smart thermostat or a connected refrigerator, the devices are landing on store shelves without standardized security controls, potentially putting customers at risk, experts say.
Web-streaming cameras are no exception. "This means they are either completely exposed, or leave room for attackers," Einaras Gravrock, chief executive of home Internet security company CUJO.
Mark Stanislav, a senior security consultant at Rapid7 who conducted the research, said companies are starting to realize they need to agree upon standards that will make Internet-connected devices more secure, but it won't be immediate.
"We're seeing movement in the right direction," he said.
Aside from the obvious concerns about hackers peering into your home, there are other things this kind of breach can lead to. Some hackers, for example, have breached baby monitors in order to yell at infants and caregivers, something Stanislav said is likely exacerbated by poor security.
There are also larger potential threats, because a camera has a tiny computer inside it that talks to the Internet. If someone took it over, they could use that device as a portal into your home or work, stealing sensitive information.
To protect themselves and their babies from being spied on through their baby monitors, parents should keep the device's software up-to-date at all times, change any default passwords and even consider unplugging the device whenever they're not actively using it, Stanislav said.
Consumers should also remember that baby monitors and other Internet-connected devices won't tell you if they've been compromised. So even if you're doing everything right, security still isn't guaranteed.
"There's almost no way you as a consumer will ever know," Stanislav said.
Chinese warships spotted off the coast of Alaska
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 03:00
Evolution usually allows animals to get better at avoiding death. However, new evidence reported by Vanderbilt University seems to find that the rise of early animals hundreds of millions of years ago was the cause of the first massive die-off of complex life '-- not a super volcano or a meteorite.
Scientists believe that for more than 3 billion years, microbes were the only life on Earth. At some point, a few of the microbes evolved to be able to photosynthesize, or convert sunlight into energy. The byproduct was toxic to most of the other microbes, who were used to an oxygen-free environment. But for the microorganisms photosynthesizing, the development allowed them to become complex, multicellular forms called Ediacarans, which took over the planet around 600 million years ago. Ediacarans were basically like plants: immobile marine life shaped like discs, tubes, fronds, or quilts.
Paleontologists call the ensuing period the "Garden of Ediacara," emphasizing the so-called peace of the era '-- that is, Ediacarans politely didn't eat each other. At least not until 60 million years ago, when they evolved even further into what we now call animals (vertebrates, mollusks, anthropoids, annelids, sponges, jellyfish).
It was these independently moving, hungry critters that caused the first extinction, by eating all the Ediacarans, the scientists say.
"This study provides the first quantitative palaeoecological evidence to suggest that evolutionary innovation, ecosystem engineering, and biological interactions may have ultimately caused the first mass extinction of complex life," Simon Darroch, the assistant professor of earth and environmental sciences at Vanderbilt University, told Science Daily.
Perhaps that's just a fancy way of suggesting that it's a dog-eat-dog world out there, and may the hungriest mollusk win. Jeva Lange
18 Turks Kidnapped in Baghdad's Sadr City
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 02:53
18 employees of a Turkish construction company, all identified as Turkish citizens, were kidnapped today in Baghdad's Sadr City, when masked gunmen wearing military uniforms made off with them. The workers were building a sports complex in Sadr City.
Though kidnapping foreign workers and ransoming them is pretty common in Iraq, Turkish officials say they have no information yet on who the kidnappers were, nor has their been any request for ransom or any indication where the workers were taken.
ISIS is a pretty common kidnapper for Turkish citizens, but they are far from the only suspects in this case, as the Turkish war with the PKK may also have that group looking to capture Turks. That the incident took place in Shi'ite Sadr City also raised speculation a Shi'ite militia may have simply done it looking for a big payday.
The good news for those captured is that by and large such kidnappings are for ransom, and the workers usually end up getting released after their company pays off the kidnappers. Negotiating this sort of release can take awhile, but Turkish companies have been working in Iraq so long they've gotten pretty experienced at doing so.
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US/NATO Embrace Psy-ops and Info-War
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 02:51
Exclusive: The U.S. government and NATO have entered the Brave New World of ''strategic communications,'' merging psy-ops, propaganda and P.R. in order to manage the perceptions of Americans and the world's public, reports veteran war correspondent Don North.
By Don North
As reflected in a recent NATO conference in Latvia and in the Pentagon's new ''Law of War'' manual, the U.S. government has come to view the control and manipulation of information as a ''soft power'' weapon, merging psychological operations, propaganda and public affairs under the catch phrase ''strategic communications.''
This attitude has led to treating psy-ops '' manipulative techniques for influencing a target population's state of mind and surreptitiously shaping people's perceptions '' as just a normal part of U.S. and NATO's information policy.
Dr. Stephen Badsey, Professor of Conflict studies, Wolverhampton University, U.K.
''The NATO case and argument is that NATO's approach to psy-ops is to treat it as an essentially open, truthful and benign activity and that, plus the elimination of any meaningful distinctions between domestic and foreign media institutions and social media, means that psy-ops and public affairs have effectively fused,'' said British military historian, Dr. Stephen Badsey, one of the world's leading authorities on war and the media.
Badsey said NATO has largely abandoned the notion that there should be a clear distinction between psy-ops and public affairs, although NATO officially rules out the dissemination of ''black propaganda,'' knowingly false information designed to discredit an adversary.
''The long argument as to whether a firewall should be maintained between psy-ops and information activities and public affairs has now largely ended, and in my view the wrong side won,'' Badsey added.
And, as part of this Brave New World of ''strategic communications,'' the U.S. military and NATO have now gone on the offensive against news organizations that present journalism which is deemed to undermine the perceptions that the U.S. government seeks to convey to the world.
That attitude led to the Pentagon's new ''Law of War'' manual which suggests journalists in wartime may be considered ''spies'' or ''unprivileged belligerents,'' creating the possibility that reporters could be subject to indefinite incarceration, military tribunals and extrajudicial execution '' the same treatment applied to Al Qaeda terrorists who are also called ''unprivileged belligerents.'' [See Consortiumnews.com's ''Pentagon Manual Calls Some Reporters Spies.'']
The revised ''Law of War'' manual has come under sharp criticism from representatives of both mainstream and independent media, including The New York Times' editors and the Committee to Protect Journalists, as well as academics such as Dr. Badsey.
''The attitude toward the media expressed in the 2015 Pentagon manual is a violation of the international laws of war to which the USA is a signatory, going back to the 1907 Hague Convention, and including the Geneva Conventions,'' said Badsey, a professor of conflict studies at Wolverhampton University in the United Kingdom and a long-time contact of mine who is often critical of U.S. military information tactics.
''But [the manual] is a reflection of the attitude fully displayed more than a decade ago in Iraq where the Pentagon decided that some media outlets, notably Al Jazeera, were enemies to be destroyed rather than legitimate news sources.''
The Vietnam Debate
The Pentagon's hostility toward journalists whose reporting undermines U.S. government propaganda goes back even further, becoming a tendentious issue during the Vietnam War in the 1960s and 1970s when the war's supporters accused American journalists of behaving treasonously by reporting critically about the U.S. military's strategies and tactics, including exposure of atrocities such as the My Lai massacre.
In the 1980s, conservatives in the Reagan administration '' embracing as an article of faith that ''liberal'' reporters contributed to the U.S. defeat in Vietnam '' moved aggressively to discredit journalists who wrote about human rights violations by U.S.-backed forces in Central America. In line with those hostile attitudes, news coverage of President Ronald Reagan's invasion of Grenada in 1983 was barred, and in 1990-91, President George H.W. Bush tightly controlled journalists trying to report on the Persian Gulf War. By keeping out '' or keeping a close eye on '' reporters, the U.S. military acted with fewer constraints and abuses went largely unreported.
This so-called ''weaponizing of information'' turned even more lethal during the presidency of Bill Clinton and the war over Kosovo when NATO identified Serb TV as an enemy ''propaganda center'' and dispatched warplanes to destroy its studios in Belgrade. In April 1999, acting under orders from U.S. Army General Wesley Clark, American bombers fired two cruise missiles that reduced Radio Televizija Srbija to a pile of rubble and killed 16 civilian Serb journalists working for the government station.
Despite this willful slaughter of unarmed journalists, the reaction from most U.S. news organizations was muted. However, an independent association of electronic media in Yugoslavia condemned the attack.
''History has shown that no form of repression, particularly the organized and premeditated murder of journalists, can prevent the flow of information, nor can it prevent the public from choosing its own sources of information,'' the group said.
The (London) Independent's Robert Fisk remarked at the time, ''once you kill people because you don't like what they say, you change the rules of war.'' Now, the Pentagon is doing exactly that, literally rewriting its ''Law of War'' manual to allow for the no-holds-barred treatment of ''enemy'' journalists as ''unprivileged belligerents.''
Despite the 1999 targeting of a news outlet in order to silence its reporting, a case for war crimes was never pursued against the U.S. and NATO officials responsible, and retired General Clark is still a frequent guest on CNN and other American news programs.
Targeting Al Jazeera
During the presidency of George W. Bush, the Arab network Al Jazeera was depicted as ''enemy media'' deserving of destruction rather than being respected as a legitimate news organization '' and the news network's offices were struck by American bombs. On Nov. 13, 2001, during the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan, a U.S. missile hit Al Jazeera's office in Kabul, destroying the building and damaging the homes of some employees.
On April 8, 2003, during the U.S. invasion of Iraq, a U.S. missile hit an electricity generator at Al Jazeera's Baghdad office, touching off a fire that killed reporter Tareq Ayyoub and wounding a colleague. The Bush administration insisted that the attacks on Al Jazeera offices were ''accidents.''
However, in 2004, as the U.S. occupation of Iraq encountered increased resistance and U.S. forces mounted a major offensive in the city of Fallujah, Al Jazeera's video of the assault graphically depicted the devastation '' and on April 15, 2004, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld decried Al Jazeera's coverage as ''vicious, inaccurate and inexcusable.''
According to a British published report on the minutes of a meeting the next day between President Bush and UK Prime Minister Tony Blair, Bush suggested bombing Al Jazeera's headquarters in Qatar but was talked out of the idea by Blair who said it would provoke a worldwide backlash.
During the Iraq War, Dr. Badsey wrote the following observation which I cited in my book on military/media relations, Inappropriate Conduct: ''The claim that in 2004 at the first battle of Fallujah the U.S. Marine Corps 'weren't beaten by the terrorists and insurgents, they were beaten by Al Jazeera television' rather than that they [U.S. forces] employed inappropriate tactics for the political environment of their mission, is recognizable as yet another variant on the long-discredited claim that the Vietnam War was lost on the television screens of America.''
Although the notion of Vietnam-era journalists for U.S. media acting as a fifth column rather than a Fourth Estate is widely accepted among conservatives, the reality was always much different, with most of the early Vietnam War coverage largely favorable, even flattering, before journalists became more skeptical as the war dragged on.
In a recent interview on NPR radio, Charles Adams, a senior editor of the new ''Law of War'' manual, was unable to cite examples of journalists jeopardizing operations in the last five wars '' and that may be because there were so few examples of journalistic misconduct and the handful of cases involved either confusion about rules or resistance to news embargoes that were considered unreasonable.
Examining the history of reporters dis-accredited during the Vietnam War, William Hammond, author of a two-volume history of U.S. Army relations with the media in Vietnam, found only eight dis-accreditations, according to military files.
Arguably the most serious case involved the Baltimore Sun's John Carroll, an Army veteran himself who believed strongly that it was important that the American people be as thoroughly informed about the controversial war as possible. He got in trouble for reporting that the U.S. Marines were about to abandon their base at Khe Sahn. He was accused of violating an embargo and was stripped of his credentials, though he argued that the North Vietnamese surrounding the base were well aware of the troop movement.
Toward the end of the war, some reporters also considered the South Vietnamese government so penetrated by the communists that there were no secrets anyway. Prime Minister Nguyen van Thieu's principal aide was a spy and everyone knew it except the American people.
During his long career, which included the editorship of the Los Angeles Times, Carroll came to view journalists ''almost as public servants and a free press as essential to a self-governing nation,'' according to his obituary in The New York Times after his death on June 14, 2015.
Strategic Communication
During the Obama administration, the concept of ''strategic communication'' '' managing the perceptions of the world's public '' has grown more and more expansive and the crackdown on the flow of information unprecedented. More than any of his predecessors, President Barack Obama has authorized harsh legal action against government ''leakers'' who have exposed inconvenient truths about U.S. foreign policy and intelligence practices.
And Obama's State Department has mounted a fierce public campaign against the Russian network, RT, that is reminiscent of the Clinton administration's hostility toward Serb TV and Bush-43's anger toward Al Jazeera.
Since RT doesn't use the State Department's preferred language regarding the Ukraine crisis and doesn't show the requisite respect for the U.S.-backed regime in Kiev, the network is denounced for its ''propaganda,'' but this finger-pointing is really just part of the playbook for ''information warfare,'' raising doubts about the information coming from your adversary while creating a more favorable environment for your own propaganda. [See Consortiumnews.com's ''Who's the Propagandist? US or RT?'']
This growing fascination with ''strategic communication'' has given rise to NATO's new temple to information technology, called ''The NATO Strategic Communications Center of Excellence'' or STRATCOM, located in Latvia, a former Soviet republic that is now on the front lines of the tensions with Russia.
On Aug. 20, some of the most influential minds from the world of ''strategic communications'' gathered in Latvia's capital of Riga for a two-day conference entitled ''Perception Matters.'' A quotation headlined in all its communications read: ''Since wars begin in the minds of men, it is in the minds of men that the defenses of peace must be constructed'' '' noble sentiments perhaps but not always reflected in the remarks by more than 200 defense and communications experts, many of whom viewed information not as some neutral factor necessary for enlightening the public and nourishing democracy, but as a ''soft power'' weapon to be wielded against an adversary.
Hawkish Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, led a delegation of U.S. senators and said STRATCOM was needed to combat Russia and its President Vladimir Putin. ''This Center will help spread the truth,'' said McCain '' although ''the truth'' in the world of ''strategic communications'' can be a matter of perception.
Don North is a veteran war correspondent who covered the Vietnam War and many other conflicts around the world. He is the author of a new book, Inappropriate Conduct, the story of a World War II correspondent whose career was crushed by the intrigue he uncovered.
Outage slams copyright registration system at Library of Congress
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 02:44
Data
Outage slams copyright registration system at Library of CongressBy Adam MazmanianSep 02, 2015The online system used to register initial copyright claims at the Library of Congress is down. Users looking to obtain copyright on books, art, music, film and other creative works are going to have to mail in paper copies of registration forms for the time being.
The system went down Aug. 29 after scheduled maintenance on the Library's James Madison building, which involved a power shutdown. An equipment failure during the restart resulted in the system, called eCO, going offline, according to a spokesperson for the Architect of the Capitol. The eCO website informs users that there is no "estimated time for service resumption." The spokesperson told FCW via email that the CIO team is "working to restore the system as quickly as possible."
The eCO system is apparently no picnic, even when it is fully operational. The site warns users that it is optimized for the Firefox web browser on machines running Windows 7, but for users of other browsers, the system "potentially could show less than optimal behavior." More caveats for users include warnings to disable pop-up blockers and third-party toolbars, and to set privacy and security settings to medium.
Information technology has been a longtime weakness for the Library of Congress, per a March 2015 report from the Government Accountability Office. The report found that the Library is not "effectively managing its investments" in its $119 million IT portfolio, it lacks a strategic plan for managing IT assets, and the lack of a permanent CIO is adding to the problems.
The Library has promised to deliver a strategic plan and spending framework for IT this month.
About the Author
Adam Mazmanian is FCW's senior staff writer, and covers Congress, health IT and governmentwide IT policy. Connect with him on Twitter: @thisismaz.
Ukraine's Protesters Were Paid to Storm Parliament?
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 02:29
Posted on September 2, 2015 by willyloman
from Sputnik International
A video has appeared on the internet showing a group of people paying protesters money to demonstrate in front of the Verkhovna Rada (Ukrainian Parliament).
In addition to money being handed out, there were also t-shirts distributed with labels and logos, some of which read ''Ukrop'', website joinfo.ua reported.
The journalists also managed to film how the protestors who came to the building of the Ukrainian parliament were handed flags of the Kolomoisky-sponsored party.
Ihor Kolomoisky, the former governor of Dnipropetrovsk, is one of Ukraine's richest tycoons with a business empire that includes holdings in the energy, media, aviation, chemical and metalwork industries. Moreover, the notorious oligarch sponsors Azov radical battalion, which fights in Donbass. Media, including Western newspapers, have persistently published facts proving that the Azov battalion comprises far-right extremists.
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OPM awards $133 million ID protection contract
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 02:24
Cybersecurity
OPM awards $133 million ID protection contractBy Sean LyngaasSep 01, 2015The Office of Personnel Management and the Defense Department have awarded a $133 million contract to Identity Theft Guard Solutions LLC to protect the 21.5 million current and former federal employees, contractors and others affected by the heist of OPM background check data.
The firm, which is doing business under the name ID Experts, will provide victims of the hack (and their minor dependents) with credit and identity monitoring, ''identity theft insurance'' and identity restoration services for three years. The task order came under a set of blanket purchase agreements that the General Services Administration awarded Sept. 1.
The government will begin notifying victims of the background data breach about how they can sign up for identity and credit monitoring services at the end of this month and over subsequent weeks. On a Sept. 1 conference call with reporters, OPM Acting Director Beth Cobert attributed the delay to erring on the safe side, to ensure ''that in the context of the notifications, we don't create any more national security issues than we have through the data that was stolen.''
CSID, a Texas-based security, identify protection and fraud detection firm, has been contracted by OPM to handle identity theft protection for the 4.2 million current and former employees whose personal data was compromised in an initial breach.
Hackers were able to infiltrate OPM networks via a contractor, KeyPoint Government Solutions, but officials said measures had been taken to prevent a repeat of that with the new contractor. An interagency group helped draw up ''stringent'' security requirements for data that the contractor will hold, Rear Adm. Althea Coetzee, principal deputy for defense procurement and acquisition policy at DOD, told reporters.
Director of National Intelligence James Clapper has singled out China as a prime suspect in the breach. When asked why so much money is being invested in identity theft protection when the hack was reportedly for espionage purposes rather than identity theft, Cobert said the interagency task group made that recommendation.
When asked if she was confident the hackers had been expelled from OPM networks, Cobert said investigators have ''found no indication of adversary activity at this time.'' A detailed timeline of the hack and the government's response, obtained exclusively by FCW, can be found here.
About the Author
Sean Lyngaas is an FCW staff writer covering defense, cybersecurity and intelligence issues. Follow him on Twitter: @snlyngaas
Facebook's Miller named first White House product director -- FCW
Thu, 03 Sep 2015 02:16
Facebook's Miller named first White House product directorJosh Miller, the White House's first product director, was a Senate intern in 2009. (Josh Miller)
Facebook veteran Josh Miller is joining the Obama administration as the White House's first director of product.
''I'm as giddy, wide-eyed, and determined as ever,'' Miller wrote in a blog post announcing his move.
He said Sept. 1 was his first day on the job.
Miller is young (he noted that 2008 was the first election for which he was old enough to vote) and has focused on the social web during his nascent career. He dropped out of Princeton to dedicate himself to conversation startup Branch, then joined Facebook when the social giant acquired Branch in January 2014.
He indicated that he plans to bring that tech-powered-communication focus to his White House role.
''Wouldn't it be great if your government had a conversation with you instead of just talking at you?'' he asked. ''Imagine if talking to the government was as easy as talking to your friends on social networks?''
He pointed to online petitions and Twitter engagement as examples of ''amazing'' government progress, and promised more to come.
As Quartz noted, Miller was mentored by Twitter veteran Jason Goldman, who became the White House's first chief digital officer in March. Miller will report to Goldman in his new post, a White House spokesperson said.
''As the White House's first director of product, his focus will be on prioritizing the experience of our users -- the American people -- across our platforms of engagement,'' the White House said in an emailed statement. ''He'll also draw on his background building a company and in industry to infuse an entrepreneurial perspective into our processes and approach to work.''
Miller, Goldman and former Google executive Megan Smith are just a few of the techies who have made the jump from big private tech firms to Uncle Sam's digital team recently.
Miller may be new to the role, but he's not new to Washington; he noted that he served as a Senate intern in 2009.
Posted by Zach Noble on Sep 01, 2015 at 11:28 AM
Understanding Amazon Underground - Amazon Apps & Services Developer Portal
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 16:00
Understanding Amazon Underground
IntroductionAmazon Underground is a one-of-a-kind experience where apps, games, and in-app items are 100% free for customers, and Amazon pays developers based on the amount of time your Amazon Underground app is used. With Amazon Underground, you can turn all of your Android users into revenue-generating customers. Get paid starting from the very first minute your Amazon Underground app is used while your app is part of Amazon Underground. With Amazon Underground, you can focus less on how to monetize your apps and focus more on creating great user experiences. Most Android apps are Amazon Underground-eligible. Getting started is easy. Just create a developer account and submit your app today. Eligibility RequirementsThe Amazon Underground Schedule describes the program eligibility requirements in detail. As you consider submitting your app to the Amazon Underground program, make sure that it adheres to the following general requirements for the program:
Your mobile app must be available for download from at least one other app store, such as Google Play, and be monetized in at least one of the following ways:The app is available for purchase for a fee in all other app stores where it is sold.The app contains in-app items that are available for purchase for a fee.Your mobile app must not contain any subscription in-app items.The features and gameplay of the Amazon Underground version of your app must be substantially similar to or better than the non-Underground version.When you submit your app to the Amazon Appstore, you must make your app available for distribution on at least one non-Amazon mobile device.Is My App a Good Candidate for Amazon Underground?Generally, apps that are good candidates for Amazon Underground are apps that provide an engaging experience for their users.
You can submit any app that meets the eligibility requirements to the program. However, Amazon will make the final call on whether or not your app is accepted.
The following types of apps are not good candidates for the Amazon Underground program:
Anti-virus or clock apps that run continuously in the background.Apps that are freely available elsewhere and do not have paid IAP items.Apps that are monetized through ads and whose only IAP item is an option to pay to remove the ads."Premium" apps whose only premium feature is being ad-free.Apps that support passive streaming content, such as a radio station app or app to watch videos. Note that an interactive game that leverages streaming technology would be eligible and would probably make a good candidate for Amazon Underground.Apps containing subscription services.Forecasting Revenue for Amazon UndergroundTo help you determine if Amazon Underground might be a good fit for your app, Amazon provides a revenue forecasting calculator:
Amazon Underground Revenue Forecasting CalculatorUse this calculator and your own data to predict the per-user revenue that you could be paid by submitting your app to Amazon Underground. You can compare these numbers with your current per-user revenue earned via downloads and/or IAP. See Monetizing Your App with Amazon Underground to learn more about revenue forecasting and monetization with Amazon Underground.
Re-Balancing Your App for Amazon UndergroundYou might feel like you can make your app even more fun and engaging for users by re-balancing your app in some way for Amazon Underground. While the Amazon Underground eligibility criteria and design guidelines currently discourages app re-balancing, Amazon may make exceptions to this guideline in the future. To be notified when Amazon will consider apps with re-balanced gameplay for Amazon Underground, sign up using the Amazon Underground Submission Form. Developing an Exclusive App for Amazon UndergroundWhile many of Amazon Underground's eligibility requirements focus on apps that are available on other platforms, Amazon will also consider admitting apps that provide a fun and engaging premium user experience and are available exclusively to Amazon Underground users. These apps will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
Developing an exclusive app for Amazon Underground could be a good choice if you want to focus on creating a fun and engaging experience for users, without having to figure out how to monetize your app or implement IAP.
If you are interested in developing a premium, exclusive app for Amazon Underground, submit your interest using the Amazon Underground Submission Form.
Program AvailabilityThis section lists the mobile devices and locations where Amazon Underground is available.
Supported Mobile DevicesAmazon Underground is currently supported on the following mobile devices:
Amazon Fire tablets (Gen 3 and later)Non-Amazon Android devices with the Amazon Underground app installed. See http://www.amazon.com/getappstore.BlackBerry 10 devices with the Amazon Underground app installedSee Device and Feature Specifications for more details on how Fire tablets are categorized by generation.
Supported LocalesThe Amazon Underground program is currently available in the US, UK, Germany, and France.
Submitting Your App to Amazon UndergroundTo submit your app to Amazon Underground:
Review the eligibility requirements on this page and in the Amazon Underground Schedule to verify that your app meets the program qualifications.Make the necessary code changes, branding changes, and re-build your app with a new package name as instructed in Migrating Your App to Amazon Underground.Prepare to migrate any user data, such as game levels achieved or user communities, as described in Migrating Users' Progress Between App Versions.Verify that you have performed the preparation steps outlined in the Amazon Underground Eligibility and Submission Checklist.Submit your app to Amazon Underground, following the instructions in Getting Started with Amazon Underground.Note: Whether or not you have an existing app in the Amazon Appstore, you will need to submit a new APK with a unique Android package name as a new app for Amazon Underground. With separate app entries in the Amazon Appstore, you can maintain both an Amazon Underground and non-Underground version of your app for the appropriate marketplaces and sales platforms. These steps are detailed in Migrating Your App to Amazon Underground.
Monetizing Your App with Amazon UndergroundAmazon Underground introduces a new form of app monetization where you will be paid for the usage time of your app rather than by individual downloads and purchases. This section provides an introduction to how payments work with Amazon Underground. For more details on payment with the program, see Monetizing Your App with Amazon Underground.
Calculating Usage TimeAs part of Amazon Underground, you will be paid for the number of minutes that customers have used your app. To determine usage time, at the end of a reporting period (usually 24 hours), Amazon calculates the total time aggregated (in milliseconds) and rounds this number to the smallest unit of currency for your marketplace. For example, in the US, this number is rounded to the nearest cent. For more details on calculating usage time see Monetizing Your App with Amazon Underground.
Amazon Underground PaymentsFor your apps that are enrolled in Amazon Underground, you will be paid based on the amount of time that customers spend using your app. You can review your Amazon Underground payments on the Reporting tab of your account in the Amazon Apps & Games Developer Portal. Please review the Amazon Underground Schedule for complete program terms.
Payment RatesAmazon Underground offers the following payment rates, based on your marketplace:
Amazon.com$0.0020Amazon.co.uk£0.0013Amazon.de'‚¬0.0018Amazon.fr'‚¬0.0018These rates are subject to change, based on the terms described in the Amazon Underground Schedule.
Interstitial AdvertisementsWhen a user launches an Amazon Underground app for the first time, a welcome message in the form of an interstitial ad plays. In subsequent times that a user either launches or resumes the app, paid interstitial ads will also sometimes play. You do not need to do anything to enable these ads. Amazon configures the ads when your app is published to Amazon Underground. Leaving the Amazon Underground ProgramReview the Amazon Underground Schedule to learn the procedure for removing your app from the Amazon Underground program. If you do remove your app from Amazon Underground, keep the following things in mind:
If you remove your app from Amazon Underground but want to keep a non-Underground version of your app in the Amazon Appstore, you must submit the non-Underground version as a new, separate app if you did not already have a non-Underground version in the Amazon Appstore. See Getting Started with Amazon Underground.Amazon recommends performing a reverse migration of users' progress for users moving from the Amazon Underground version to the non-Underground version once the Underground version is no longer supported. See Migrating Users' Progress Between App Versions for recommendations on how to address this situation.Related Resources
In Nordics, many refugees encounter a paradise lost - Yahoo News Canada
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 16:00
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Norwegian bank issues anti-Semitic credit card, says sorry | The Ugly Truth
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 15:53
The card features a centuries old trope of the hook-nosed Jew, wearing a kippah and a prayer shawl, rejoicing against the backdrop of gold coinsJERUSALEM POSTA pro-Israel advocacy organization demanded an explanation from a Norwegian bank after it the company issued a credit card bearing blatantly anti-Semitic images.The Hallelu Foundation, which aims to promote a positive perception of Israel around the world, came across the bank card after it was issued by one of Norway's largest banking firms, DNB, to an Australian national residing in the Scandinavian country.The card features a centuries old trope of the hook-nosed Jew, wearing a kippah and a prayer shawl, rejoicing against the backdrop of gold coins. The DNB logo can be seen beside the image.Upon hearing of the anti-Semitic illustration, the Hallelu foundation immediately contacted DNB's corporate staff.The pro-Israel group passed the image to the company via email and withing a short period of time received a response.''We have been notified about a picture of a Visa card issued by us, with a picture of a anti-Semitic drawing of a Jew,'' read the apology which Hallelu posted to their Facebook page, ''and found out that this was produced due to a system we have where clients can upload their own pictures and get them printed on their card.''''We have, however, strict guidelines for what kind of pictures that are allowed, and this control is manual. Unfortunately, our manual control have failed in this particular case, and we are deeply sorry for that. This card should never have been printed.''''We will contact the client, block the card and issue a new neutral card to the customer,'' Vastrwald added.''Please note that this is not a mass produced card, and the picture has been deleted from our system.''''We are very sorry for this, and hope you can convey our answer if you get questions about this.''Like this:LikeLoading...
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TCAS, ADS-B Unreliable on East Coast During September | Aerospace News: Aviation International News
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 15:50
ADS-B surveillance and some TCAS operations in the airspace over Virginia, North and South Carolina, Georgia and Florida might become unreliable as of September 2 at 1 a.m. EDT, according to a Notam the FAA issued on September 1. The outages are due to events the agency labeled as ''late notice from the Department of Defense of military exercises.'' NBAA ''voiced its concern to the FAA that these sort of significant impact tests need much more notice to operators in the National Airspace System.''
The outages are scheduled to last until midnight October 1. In addition to the areas of concern noted in domestic airspace, the FAA said the outages might well extend up to 200-nm offshore.
The agency said one outage symptom could be the tracks of nearby aircraft first appearing close to the primary aircraft that immediately switch to a traffic alert/resolution alert status on TCAS. Pilots should maintain a heightened watch on the airspace around them and report any incidents of nearby aircraft they believe should have generated alerts, but did not. The relevant Notam numbers are 5/2817, 5/2818, 5/2819, 5/2820 and 5/2834.
Dangerous History Podcast Uncle Sam vs Democracy part 2 | Prof CJ's
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 15:48
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Encouraged by their success against Iran's democratic government (covered in last episode), the Dulles Brothers' next move was against the small central American country of Guatemala, where a left-of-center government appeared to be threatening the interests of the United Fruit Company.
Join Prof CJ as he discusses:
The immediate backstory on Guatemala, including the dominance of American corporations over the country, its democratic revolution in 1944 and the election of Jacobo Arbenz Guzman to the presidency in 1951The Arbenz government's Decree 900, aimed at redistributing unused land to poor peasantsThe CIA's Operation PB Success, a largely psychological campaign that succeeded in overthrowing Arbenz in June 1954How the CIA itself, after ousting Arbenz, failed to find any real evidence that Arbenz was in league with the SovietsThe brutal aftermath of this coup, which caused suffering and oppression in Guatemala for decades and killed over 200,000 peopleA brief thought experiment of how Americans might respond if they were put in an analogous situationSome discussion of the concept known as ''blowback''Prof CJ's Picks (buy from Amazon via these links to help support the show at no additional cost to you)
Copyright (C) 2014. All rights reserved.
July 25th, 2010 '' The Day Wikileaks Posted 90,000 Middle-East Classified Documents Online '' Was the Day Hillary Directed a Middle-East Envoy To Use Her Private Email For Correspondence |
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 15:46
Russian Companies Sanctioned For Selling Arms To Iran '' TheBigOweSeveral Russian companies have been sanctioned by the U.S. for selling arms to Iran, North Korea, and'...
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Lefty Poll Tries To Ding Trump- TheBigOwePPP tries to ding Trump with a loaded poll that has everything a lefty, or !Jeb! supporter could love.
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There Are Some Things They Can't Teach You In College '' springerI don't care where somebody might have gone to school, there are some things you have to learn the hard'...
Gaddafi Could Have Been Saved? '' TheBigOweA claim that Tony Blair tried to save Gaddafi from destruction, before Hillary and Obama knifed him,'...
Turkey Arrests Two More Journalists- TheBigOweTurkey arrests two journalists for allegedly being friendly with ISIS. One had encryption software associated'...
Natural Gas Field A Power Boost For Cairo '' TheBigOweNatural gas might be the leverage Egypt needs to get on track in the region. No one over there is begging'...
Tycoon Haim Saban vows 'full might' for Hillary Clinton
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 15:41
'I hope she will run. She would be a wonderful president,' Haim Saban says.
By Maggie Haberman
11/29/13, 10:42 PM EST
Mega-donor and Hollywood figure Haim Saban, a longtime Hillary Clinton backer, on Friday said he'd ''pitch in with full might'' if she launches a likely 2016 campaign, describing a growing consensus that she is President Barack Obama's ''natural successor.''
The remarks to Israel's Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper came several months after the media tycoon privately commissioned a movie about Clinton upon her departure from the State Department, featuring international figures including Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Obama singing her praises as Secretary of State.
''I hope she will run. She would be a wonderful president,'' said Saban, who gave $1 million last year to a super PAC that raised money for Priorities USA and other groups. Priorities backed Obama in 2012 and is in the process of morphing into a pro-Clinton endeavor.
( PHOTOS: Who's talking about Hillary Clinton 2016?)
''If it happens, we will of course pitch in with full might,'' Saban added. ''Seeing her in the White House is a big dream of mine.''
Saban's comments about Vice President Joe Biden were also noteworthy.
''I think that if Vice President Biden decides to run, Obama will stay neutral, but if Biden does not run and she does, he will support her,'' Saban said. ''The general feeling is that Hillary is Obama's natural successor.''
Biden has made clear he wants to be taken seriously as a potential 2016 hopeful, but he was was depicted in the 2012 retrospective ''Double Down''as a nuisance to Obama's aides, who engaged in loose talk about replacing him on the ticket with Clinton.
( PHOTOS: Stars line up for Hillary Clinton 2016)
The early signal from Saban is a reminder that Clinton will have plenty of outside cash to help her in a potential campaign. And unlike Obama, who had an uncomfortable relationship with Priorities USA that kept a number of donors at bay, the Clintons have historically had no such worry. Bill Clinton provided a major boost to Priorities in mid-2012 at a time when it was struggling.
As for Biden, the question of whether Obama campaign manager Jim Messina will join Priorities USA has been delayed, according to multiple sources, because of the dust-up over ''Double Down.'' The central figure in that episode was former White House chief of staff William Daley, and Obama has said he himself never considered such a thing, but the information in the book has left a bad taste in the mouths of Biden allies.
Maggie Haberman is senior political reporter for Politico.
The icebreaker gap
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 15:10
As the United States and Russia eye new shipping routes in the melting Arctic, political and military leaders in Washington are pointing to a crucial gap in the one type of vessel that can turn frozen waters into reliable lanes for commerce or national defense.
Icebreakers '-- the ships that smash through sea ice, opening routes for other craft and rescuing trapped vessels '-- are increasingly important to navigating in the far north. Russia has 40 of them, including nuclear-powered craft painted an intimidating red and black.
Meanwhile, the U.S. icebreaker fleet? Two.
Or three, if you count the aging vessel in a Seattle drydock being cannibalized for parts.
''The highways of the Arctic are icebreakers. Right now the Russians have superhighways and we have dirt roads with potholes,'' said Freshman Republican Sen. Dan Sullivan of Alaska.
Though much of President Barack Obama's visit to the Arctic this week focuses on the region's environment and its people, the larger backdrop is that the polar region is becoming the subject of intense negotiations among Arctic nations over commerce and resources, and growing tension driven by its potential strategic importance.
Nearly a quarter of the world's undiscovered oil and gas may lie under the Arctic seabed; for commercial shippers, the opening of the Northern Sea Route would shorten voyages between China and Europe. Russia held massive military exercises in the Arctic earlier this year, and both countries have national Arctic strategies that identify icebreakers as key to their ambitions, according to Victoria Herrmann, the U.S. director of the Arctic Institute.
But Russia is far better prepared: in addition to its 40 active ships, it has six more under construction and two more planned beyond that, according to numbers compiled by the Arctic Institute's Ryan Uljua, who is cobbling together an inventory of the world's icebreakers.
It might seem that a warming Arctic would require less icebreaking, not more. But as northern waters become more accessible, far more ship traffic will be at risk, and their shifting climate conditions make it more likely seas will freeze unpredictably.
Though it remains far down the US priority list, the icebreaker deficit has been crackling onto Washington's radar. At a recent National Press Club event, Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Paul Zukunft called for more icebreakers; in late July, Sen. Angus King (I-Maine) pressed new Navy chief Adm. John Richardson about icebreakers during his confirmation hearing. ''I think it's a serious problem that we're going to have to really put some attention to it,'' King said. [UPDATE: President Obama joined them this morning, saying the US should start building new icebreakers.]
The icebreaker gap is also exposing some deeper problems that speak to the long neglect of the issue. Not only are they expensive, costing at least $1 billion each, but it would take the U.S. shipbuilding industry '' which has long ceased to build icebreakers -- at least ten years to build a brand new one.
Russia's icebreaker fleet includes formidable nuclear icebreakers like the Rossiya, shown here after escorting a submarine mission to the North Pole. | AP Photo
And it's unclear who would pay for the next generation. Icebreakers are operated by the Coast Guard, but their cost falls way outside the reach of its budget. Funding them, said Zukunft, is the ''billion-dollar question.''
At its height, the U.S. icebreaker fleet hovered around eight ships, comparable to that of other Arctic countries like Canada, Finland and Sweden. But the Coast Guard's robust fleet dropped out of commission one by one, and today consists of one 40-year-old heavy icebreaker, the Polar Star, commissioned in 1976, and one medium icebreaker, the Healy, commissioned in 2000. The Polar Star's sister ship, the Polar Sea, has been sitting in a drydock in Seattle since its engine failed in 2010.
Though icebreakers are crucial for defense, Arctic drilling, and research, they have an important role in civilian life too. In December 2011, the people of the remote and icebound city of Nome, Alaska, were running short on heating fuel. The water in the Norton Sound froze solid, blocking an emergency delivery by a Russian tanker. The U.S. Coast Guard scrambled to reroute its nearest icebreaker: the Healy, on its way to Seattle for some much needed rest. The Healy turned around and slowly broke open a path for the tanker, which reached Nome in January.
If the Healy had also gotten stuck or broken down, the Coast Guard had no plan B. Its two other icebreakers were out of commission, one retired and one in drydock with a catastrophic engine failure '' and the citizens of Nome would have been trapped. ''We were just lucky in that particular case,'' former Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Robert Papp, who is now the State Department's special representative to the Arctic, told POLITICO.
''Unfortunately, I think the thing that will get people serious about the need to have a national icebreaking fleet is going to be a disaster and loss of life'...'' said retired Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Gary Roughead, chairman of the Arctic Security Working Group at Stanford University's Hoover Institute. ''It will be a cruise ship that becomes icebound and sinks, or some destination shipping that sinks and results in loss of life and environmental disaster. Then we will be in a 'who shot John' mode at that point.''
The Department of Homeland Security issued a mission statement in 2013 specifically citing the need for polar icebreakers. The agency determined the Coast Guard needs three heavy icebreakers '' capable of breaking through up to 21 feet of ice '' and three medium icebreakers, which can tackle eight feet of ice, in order to meet U.S. icebreaking capability.
Today, it has one heavy and one light. The heavy ship is the Polar Star '-- which only has about six to eight more years of service life left '-- can't take on missions in the Arctic, according to Zukunft, because it's fully committed for five years to liberating Antarctica's McMurdo Sound for the National Science Foundation from November to April, then returns for maintenance from May to October.
The ships require thick steel, reinforced hulls and enormous horsepower to ram through ice. Icebreakers also have special onboard tanks and pumps that shift water from one side of the boat, rocking it to break the surrounding ice. The Coast Guard's total budget request for fiscal 2016 is $9.96 billion; a single icebreaker would eat a tenth of the budget.
Some would like to see the other beneficiaries of icebreakers, like the Navy or the National Science Foundation, help to fund them. The Healy, Papp noted, was paid for using entirely Navy funding.
Zukunft said in order to get funding for icebreakers outside of the Coast Guard budget, the vessels would need to be seen as national assets'--in the same light as aircraft carriers and nuclear ballistic submarines. ''At the end of the day it really is a national asset, where it's not just Coast Guard, it's the National Science Foundation, the Arctic Research Council, the Department of the Interior, Transportation, Defense Department, Commerce, a number of others, that have equities in heavy icebreakers,'' he said.
Alaskan senator Lisa Murkowski, who's led the charge for new icebreakers for years, wants to see the Navy and Coast Guard partner to fund the ships. ''Do you know how many naval ships we are building? A lot,'' she said. ''Do you know how many icebreakers we are building? None.''
But even if funding to build new icebreakers came tomorrow, it would still take too long to build one ship, analysts say. Current law requires Coast Guard vessels to be constructed in U.S. shipyards unless the President determines there's an overriding national-security interest to build a ship outside of the U.S.
Lockheed Shipbuilding of Seattle, Washington, which built the Polar Star and the Polar Sea, is closed. So is Avondale Industries outside of New Orleans, which built the Healy. One privately owned icebreaker, leased to Shell, was built by a pair of domestic shipbuilders. ''But the domestic industry is kind of thin,'' Uljua said. He estimated that building a new vessel stateside would take at least 10 years, and crafting a design alone could take several years. Another option would be leasing a ship, though according to Uljua, there are no heavy icebreakers available to lease; one would have to be built.
Zukunft said it's also possible for a stateside shipbuilder to take a commercial off-the-shelf design from a different country and build the vessel in the U.S. Canada, for example, has a design for a heavy icebreaker and the U.S. is exploring the possibility of partnering with the country to build icebreakers, he said.
The Coast Guard is conducting a study, not yet public, examining Canadian and Finnish companies' ability to construct an icebreaker, according to Uljua, who said one firm in Helsinki, Finland '-- Aker Arctic '--has designed 60 percent of the world's icebreakers.
But the Hoover Institute's Roughead was skeptical that bringing a foreign country into the mix would work. ''I don't see the shipbuilding industry and shipbuilding interests agreeing to that, but I do think you could save some money and indeed time.''
For now, however, money remains the first sticking point. Sen. Sullivan said he co-sponsored an amendment with Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) that would authorize $4 million in fiscal 2016 and $10 million in fiscal 2017 to look at the feasibility of a new polar icebreaker.
Within the Homeland Security spending bill for fiscal 2016, Sen. Murkowski said, there is a request for $6 million to conduct a material condition assessment for the out-of-commission Polar Sea'--though Murkowski is skeptical the damaged ship will ever make it back into the water.
Murkowski said she's heartened that senators from warmer U.S. regions finally appear to be thinking about the problem, Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain and colleagues as far south as Florida have told her they're interested in the issue. Murkowski added that Alabama Republican Sen. Richard Shelby has called for new icebreakers in a recent appropriations hearing.
Sullivan said he hopes President Obama ''sees the potential in the Arctic and announces more resources to bolster our lackluster icebreaker fleet'' after he visits Alaska for the GLACIER Conference next week.
Beneath all the wrangling over money and logistics, the debate over icebreakers gets at the bigger question of how America sees itself. With so much focus on the Middle East, the ''pivot to Asia,'' and the threat of Russian aggression in Eastern Europe, it's easy to forget the potential of the north.
''I've been out there on my lonely crusade for so long now,'' Murkowski said. Her attempts to fund icebreakers, she added, have been ''viewed as an Alaska earmark, and that is so far from the case '... I have been standing at the top of the mountains saying, ' We have to have icebreaking capacity. We are an Arctic nation.'''
Revenue Forecasting Calculator - Amazon Apps & Games Developer Portal
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 15:08
With Amazon Underground, you will be paid based on the amount of time spent by a customer in your Amazon Underground app, instead of per download or each in-app purchase. Use this calculator to estimate the revenue you will earn by attracting more users to your app with the benefit of Actually Free content through Amazon Underground.
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Cable: 08KINSHASA61_a
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 14:22
Show Headers
1. (C) Summary: Embassy Kinshasa hereby requests a feasibility study on the potential use in the Democratic Republic of the Congo of non-lethal, Psychological Operations (PSYOP) as a means to influence negative forces and asks that a PSYOP assessment team (POAT) be dispatched to the DRC as quickly as possible. End summary. 2. (C) The GDRC is striving to exert control over its largely ungoverned eastern region through the reduction and eventual elimination of illegal foreign and domestic armed groups. This effort is directed at a large number of armed groups, including the FARDC, a mainly foreign (Rwandan) group made up of many ex-FAR/Interhamwe members; the Lord's Resistance Army, with members mostly from Uganda; the force led by renegade General Laurent Nkunda; and independent "Mai-Mai" groups. 3. (C) Note: the FDLR, formerly known as the Army for the Liberation of Rwanda, is on the U.S. government,s terrorist exclusion designation list as a terrorist organization, subject to relevant sanctions. It is an organized militia of the larger group of ex-FAR/Interhamwe still in the Congo, promoting an extremist ideology through armed violence. The LRA is also on the U.S. government,s Terrorist Exclusion List. End Note. 4. (C) Military pressure is clearly a necessary component to impose the Government's authority over the area in conflict and to achieve peace and stability in the region, which includes Rwanda, Uganda, and Burundi. In addition to conventional military action, however, non-lethal, Psychological Operations -- PSYOP -- could be an effective means to influence negative forces. The primary goal of PSYOP is to improve efforts to entice members of illegal armed groups to desert and enter DDR programs. Secondary goals include reinforcing the importance of respecting human rights, the protection of civilian populations, and prevention of gender-based violence, including plans to end impunity and bring to justice the worst perpetrators of crimes. (NOTE: the Defense Institute of International Legal Studies has an ongoing program to strengthen the DRC military justice system. END NOTE.) Additionally, messages should provide objective information that reinforces support for democracy and the democratically-elected Government DRC. 5. (C) The restoration of central authority cannot be achieved through bilateral aid alone. Instead, this effort must be undertaken in collaboration with our multilateral partners, including MONUC, EUSEC, the AU, and, where possible, with individual partners. We should keep in mind that to be most successful an information program must showcase the incentives in place for DDR. We must also reinforce the message that deserters are well-treated and integrated into local society or repatriated, as appropriate. We would seek to work closely with MONUC, GDRC/FARDC, and other donors to ensure that the DDR process works well, supporting and feeding success stories back into the information operations plan. 6. (C) We should also develop and support new ways to communicate this message to isolated areas where ex-FAR/Interhamwe are still active, including by expanding the Department of State,s Rewards for Justice Program as it applies to the senior leadership of the ex-FAR/Interhamwe LRA, and others, and through better coordination with the Government of Rwanda on spreading the message inviting ex-FAR/Interhamwe repatriation. Additionally, the team should look at ways to provide PSYOP support to FARDC military operations in order to improve their effectiveness. 7. (C) We note that PSYOP is well suited for Military Operations Other than War (MOOTW), and can be used to help the democratically-elected government and its institutions gain popular support, publicize beneficial reforms and programs that are being implemented, shift the loyalty of domestic negative forces and their supporters towards the government. PSYOP can also deter negative forces from initiating actions detrimental to the interests of MONUC and the international community. Furthermore, PSYOP can promote the cessation of hostilities to reduce casualties on both sides, reduce collateral damage, and enhance transition to post-hostilities while reinforcing favorable attitudes and behavior towards MONUC and the international community. 8. (C) Embassy Kinshasa recommends that we make no effort to publicize this program, at least in its initial stages, but neither would it be compartmentalized. If successful, this approach would buttress USG efforts to bring peace and stability to the region through non-lethal means, with corollary benefits for the humanitarian situation. 9. (C) Lastly, Embassy Kinshasa recognizes that PSYOP programs, plans, and products all stem from a staff process that requires input from a variety of agencies such as the CIA, DOS, the Broadcasting Board of Governors, as well as others. Furthermore, AMEMB Kinshasa recognizes that the combatant commander (Commander, EUCOM/AFRICOM) is responsible for the conduct of all PSYOP operations within his command,s area of responsibility. Additionally, the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy (USD(P)) approves all PSYOP programs (unless delegated to the Assistant Secretary of Defense (ASD(SO/LIC))). Once the program is approved, all plans must synchronize military PSYOP with national information programs. Finally, the COM or his designated representative must approve all products prior to publication in order to ensure that they meet his intent. BROCK
Jewel glitch costs 2nd shopper $682.40; experts say stop using debit - Chicago Tribune
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 14:19
The recent payment processing glitch at Jewel-Osco highlights the risk of using debit cards, which expose consumers to a cash-flow crunch if their card is compromised by such a foul-up or fraud.
It's why many privacy advocates beat the drum against using debit cards, regularly warning of their dangers compared with paying by cash or credit card.
Consumer advocate, author and syndicated radio host Clark Howard calls debit cards "piece of trash fake Visas and fake MasterCards." He has for years railed against using them because of their risks.
The Privacy Rights Clearinghouse suggests that consumers never use '-- or even carry '-- debit cards, saying they are just too risky and offer limited consumer protections.
"The most important thing for consumers to know is that a debit card is a direct pipeline into your checking account," said Paul Stephens, director of policy and advocacy at the nonprofit consumer organization. Even if the problem is ultimately fixed, consumers could be temporarily without their money and incur overdraft fees from their banks.
Despite the repeated warnings '-- and fraud being so rampant last year that it was dubbed the year of the data breach '-- debit cards are popular. Bankrate.com last year in a survey of holiday buying habits found that 34 percent planned to pay with debit cards. And recent reports suggest debt-averse millennials are eschewing credit cards for debit.
Overall, more debit card transactions take place in America than credit card transactions, Stephens said.
Debit cards recently became a problem for some customers of Jewel-Osco, which said a third-party payment processor told it late last week that there was a "payment system outage" that resulted in "some customers' debit and credit cards inadvertently being charged twice or more for one transaction."
Among them was Tinley Park resident Debra Studzinski, who told the Tribune of being overcharged by more than $400 after the store had problems processing her debit card on a $300 grocery bill. She said she worried about not having enough money in her checking account to meet other obligations.
Jewel said Tuesday that it will likely take up to five days to reverse duplicate charges that some shoppers experienced when they used their debit and credit cards at the store last week. Jewel also said it was a "nationwide problem affecting many retailers," though it didn't elaborate.
Privacy advocates grant that debit cards are useful for controlling spending because consumers pay with cash already in their accounts, with no chance of racking up outrageous finance charges like on a credit card.
But debit cards are lousy for security because federal protections aren't as strong as they are for credit cards.
The main drawback is that if fraud occurs '-- or in the case of Jewel, a processing glitch '-- money is actually missing from your bank account, unlike with a credit card. And by federal law, banks can take up to two weeks to replace the money, potentially putting a stranglehold on cash flow, although card companies like Visa and MasterCard say they ultimately won't hold cardholders liable for fraud.
Besides paying cash, using a credit card and paying off the balance in full each month to avoid finance charges is the best payment method, Stephens said. "Our suggestion is to use your credit card as a debit card," he said. Prepaid cards aren't ideal but at least don't expose your whole checking account to being drained. Instead of carrying a debit card, request from your bank an ATM-only card for accessing cash machines. The cards work the same at the ATM but don't carry the Visa or MasterCard logo, he said.
Chicagoan Sarah Lisy also had a problem using plastic at a Jewel in Rogers Park last Friday and realized it when she checked the balance in her checking account on Monday.
"I tried three times at the cashier to process my purchase, once as a credit card and twice as a debit card," she recalled. "I ended up taking money out of the ATM to cover my purchase." She was assured that the charges on her cards wouldn't go through.
But Lisy said she is now out an additional $682.40 for the debit card transactions.
"I spent 45 minutes on hold yesterday to reach a customer service person by phone to register my complaint," Lisy said. "Everyone, including the store manager that gave me the phone number, has been very nice and polite, but I'm still short $682.40 with a promise that this will be resolved by Thursday."
Late Tuesday morning, Lisy said Jewel told her to return to the store and try to get the charges reversed and, if that fails, to get cash.
On Tuesday, Jewel reiterated that it was "extremely sorry for the inconvenience the electronic payment processing issue caused."
"The issue on Friday was a nationwide problem affecting many retailers, not just Jewel-Osco," Jewel spokeswoman Mary Frances Bragiel said. "We are investigating this issue with our payment processor."
She didn't name the payment processor or elaborate on other retailers.
"They are working to reverse all duplicate transactions," Bragiel said. "Some banks may take longer to credit individual accounts."
Customers with questions should call Jewel's customer service center at 877-932-7948.
gkarp@tribpub.com
byerak@tribpub.com
Twitter @spendingsmart
Twitter @beckyyerak
Copyright (C) 2015, Chicago Tribune
Report: More than half of immigrants on welfare
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 14:09
More than half of the nation's immigrants receive some kind of government welfare, a figure that's far higher than the native-born population, according to a report to be released Wednesday.
About 51% of immigrant-led households receive at least one kind of welfare benefit, including Medicaid, food stamps, school lunches and housing assistance, compared to 30% for native-led households, according to the report from the Center for Immigration Studies, a group that advocates for lower levels of immigration.
Those numbers increase for households with children, with 76% of immigrant-led households receiving welfare, compared to 52% for the native-born.
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The findings are sure to fuel debate on the presidential campaign trail as Republican candidates focus on changing the nation's immigration laws, from calls for mass deportations to ending birthright citizenship.
Steven Camarota, director of research at center and author of the report, said that's a much-needed conversation to make the country's immigration system more "selective."
Read MoreHas Donald Trump forced Jeb Bush to change his tune?
"This should not be understood as some kind of defect or moral failing on the part of immigrants," Camarota said about the findings. "Rather, what it represents is a system that allows a lot of less-educated immigrants to settle in the country, who then earn modest wages and are eligible for a very generous welfare system."
Charles Mostoller | Reuters
Undocumented immigrant Angela Navarro and her husband Ermer Fernandez (L), along with other immigrants and supporters, watch President Barack Obama announce executive action on immigration, at the West Kensington Ministry church, in Philadelphia, Nov. 20, 2014.
Linda Chavez agrees with Camarota that the country's welfare system is too large and too costly. But Chavez, a self-professed conservative who worked in President Reagan's administration, said it's irresponsible to say immigrants are taking advantage of the country's welfare system any more than native-born Americans.
Chavez said today's immigrants, like all other immigrant waves in the country's history, start off poorer and have lower levels of education, making it unfair to compare their welfare use to the long-established native-born population. She said immigrants have larger households, making it more likely that one person in that household will receive some kind of welfare benefit. And she said many benefits counted in the study are going to U.S.-born children of immigrants, skewing the findings even more.
"When you take all of those issues into account, (the report) is less worrisome," she said.
Chavez, president of the Becoming American Institute, a conservative group that advocates for higher levels of legal immigration to reduce illegal immigration, said politicians should be careful about using the data. Rather than focus on the fact that immigrants are initially more dependent on welfare than the U.S.-born, she said they should focus on studies that show what happens to the children of those immigrants.
Read MoreTed Cruz: I 'salute' Donald Trump for discussing immigration
"These kids who get subsidized school lunches today will go on to graduate high school ... will go on to college and move up to the middle class of America," Chavez said. "Every time we have a nativist backlash in our history, we forget that we see immigrants change very rapidly in the second generation."
The center's report is based on 2012 data from the Census Bureau's Survey of Income and Program Participation. It includes immigrants who have become naturalized citizens, legal permanent residents, those on short-term visas and undocumented immigrants.
Camarota said one of the most shocking findings from the report was the high number of native-born Americans also on welfare. About 76% of immigrant households with children are on welfare, but so are 52% of native-born households with children.
"Most people have a sense that if you were to work for $10 an hour, 40 hours a week, you couldn't be receiving welfare, could you? You couldn't be living in public housing, could you?" he said. "The answer is yes, you can. That's one of the most surprising things about this study."
Other findings in the report:
Immigrants are more likely to be working than their native-born neighbors. The report found that 87% of immigrant households had at least one worker, compared to 76% for native households.The majority of immigrants using welfare come from Central America, Mexico and the Caribbean. The use of welfare is lower for immigrants from East Asia (32%), Europe (26%) and South Asia (17%).Immigrants who have been in the U.S. more than 20 years use welfare less often, but their rates remain higher than native-born households.
Pronouns - Nonbinary.org
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 14:06
Pronouns are a part of language used to refer to someone or something without using proper nouns. In standard English, some singular third-person pronouns are "he" and "she," which are usually seen as gender-specific pronouns, referring to a man and a woman, respectively. A gender-neutral pronoun or gender-inclusive pronoun is one that gives no implications about gender, and could be used for someone of any gender. Some languages only have gender-neutral pronouns, whereas other languages have difficulty establishing any that aren't gender-specific. People with non-binary gender identities often choose new third-person pronouns for themselves as part of their transition. They often choose gender-neutral pronouns so that others won't see them as female or male.
Arabic neutral pronounsGender-neutral pronouns in Arabic language (عربي) include:
هما means "they, originally dual, can work as a neutral singular third person."[1]
انتما means "second person dual."[2]
Bulgarian neutral pronounsGender-neutral pronouns in Bulgarian language (бъÐ>>Ð"аÑски език) include:
те/тях/техен/им "generally used for a group of people, could be used as singular as in 'they'"[3]
о/неÐ"о/неÐ"ово/му "means 'it', informal"[4]
Chinese neutral pronounsGender-neutral pronouns in Chinese language (中文) include:
na4ge4ren2 (traditional: 那å‹äºº) (simplified: 那个人) means "that person."[5]
zhe4ge4ren2 (traditional: éå‹äºº) (simplified: è个人) means "this person."[6]
Gender-neutral pronouns in Mandarin Chinese (æ®éšè¯') include:
tā/ta1 is the standard pronoun for people, which when pronounced aloud is gender-neutral. However, the written characters (either ä>>– or 她 depending) aren't gender-neutral. Another written form of tā is 它 meaning "it," but this can be derogatory, so only use it for a person with their permission. Similarly, tā ç‰ is a pronoun "used for non-human animals."[7]
Gender-neutral pronouns in Cantonese (å¹å·žè¯') include:
keºih/keoi5 ä½ meaning "them/him/her/it"
Czech neutral pronounsGender-neutral pronouns in Czech language (čeÅtina) include:
onikn­, "which was used in the past as gender-neutral pronoun when refering to someone of lesser status. it's oni/je/jejich/se they/them/their/themself and the use is: Oni jsou moc mil½m člověkem. - They are a very nice person."[8]
Danish neutral pronounsGender-neutral pronouns in Danish language (Dansk) include:
de, dem, deres[9]
hen, hen, hens[10]
Dutch neutral pronounsGender-neutral pronouns in Dutch language (Nederlands) include:
ze, hun, ze "note: literal translation of they, but ze is often used as 'she'"[11]
zij, hen, hun[12]
English neutral pronounsSee also: gender neutral language - English, glossary of English gender and sex terminology
In English, people are usually called by a pronoun that implies their gender. For example, she for women, and he for men. The use of singular they as a gender-neutral pronoun has been documented as standard usage in English throughout the past thousand years. However, prescriptive grammarians in the late eighteenth century decided that it was bad grammar, because it works like a plural, and because it isn't done in Latin.[13]
Prescriptive grammarians of the late eighteenth century instead recommended using "he" as a gender-neutral pronoun when one is needed, instead of "singular they."[14] However, "gender-neutral he" results in writings that are unclear about whether they mean only men or not, which makes problems in law.[15]
Seeking a solution to the problem of a lack of a gender-neutral pronoun in English that satisfies all needs, people since the mid nineteenth century have proposed many new gender-neutral singular pronouns.[16] For example, sie, Spivak pronouns, and others. None of these new words (neologisms) have become standard use or adopted into books of English grammar. However, some sets of these neologistic pronouns have seen use for real people with non-binary gender identities, and for characters in fiction. These neologisms are the main topic explored in this article.
There have been some native English dialects that have their own gender-neutral pronouns, such as a, ou, and yo. These aren't widespread.
This list is of third-person singular pronouns in the English language only. (Pronouns in other languages should go on a different page.) These pronouns have all been used in English, or at least have been proposed to be so. Please add more, but only if you give links to sources. List pronoun sets in alphabetical order by their nominative form, or by the name of the set. In this list, a question mark means that one of the forms of that pronoun are unknown.
*E*e, h*, h*s, h*s, h*self.[17][18] Called "splat pronouns," these all use an asterisk to represent ambiguity between "he" and "she." Some software and Internet resources in the 1990s used them informally as gender-neutral pronouns. LambdaMOO offered these "splat" pronouns in addition to "Spivak" pronouns. In 2002, 10 out of 4061 people on LambdaMOO used splat pronouns.[19]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke *e laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug *er.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, *es hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow *es.Reflexive: Each child feeds *eself.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/*e/h*/h*s/h*s/h*self
Aa, ?, ?, ?, ? (forms other than nominative form are not known, and might not be used). "In 1789, William H. Marshall records ['...] Middle English epicene 'a', used by the 14th century English writer John of Trevisa, and both the OED and Wright's English Dialect Dictionary confirm the use of 'a' for he, she, it, they, and even I. This 'a' is a reduced form of the Anglo-Saxon he = 'he' and heo = 'she'.'' Source: Baron, Dennis (1986). Grammar and Gender. New Haven: Yale University Press. ISBN 0-300-03526-8. as cited by: Williams, John (1990s)." [20] Some living British dialects still use the gender-neutral "a" pronoun.[21]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke a laughs.Accusative: (N/A?)Pronominal possessive: (N/A?)Predicative possessive: (N/A?)Reflexive: (N/A?)Aeae, ?, ?, ?, ?. "In David Lindsay's Voyage to Arcturus (1920) a man from earth meets people on another planet who are neither man nor woman so he invents a new pronoun ae to refer to them."[22]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ae laughs.Accusative: ?Pronominal possessive: ?Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?AiSee nounself pronouns.
Alaala, alum, alis, ?, ?. Created in 1989, "Michael Knab, of Goodwin, Knab and Co., Chicago, derives these from [Latin] al, 'other' and feels they resemble the Hawaiian sex-neutral pronouns oia, ia."[23]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ala laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug alum.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, alis hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?Alternating pronounshe, her, his, herself (for example). Instead of using an alternative or neutral pronoun set, some people prefer an alternation between the binary-gendered sets. Justice Ginsburg is in favor of alternating "he" and "she" pronouns to make legal documents gender-inclusive.[24]
Use in fiction: In K. A. Cook's short story "Blue Paint, Chocolate and Other Similes," in Crooked Words, most of the story involves the narrator Ben moving from one set of pronouns to another for Chris as he tries to figure out Chris's gender. When the narrator is trying to determine whether Chris is male or female, Ben alternates between thinking of Chris as he or she. Upon recognizing that Chris identifies as nonbinary, the narrator begins using ze pronouns for Chris. Then, Ben finally finds a good moment to ask for Chris's pronoun preference.[25]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell her a joke he laughs.Accusative: When I greet her I hug him.Pronominal possessive: When he does not get a haircut, her hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If my mobile phone runs out of power, he lets me borrow hers.Reflexive: Each child feeds herself. or Each child feeds himself.BleSee racial pronouns.
BunSee nounself pronouns.
Cece, cir, cir, cirs, cirself. Created by Taz (Tumblr user jackalwedding) in 2014 (or earlier?),[26] who went by these pronouns cirself.[27]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ce laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug cir.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, cir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow cirs.Reflexive: Each child feeds cirself.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/ce/cir/cir/cirs/cirself
Cheche, chim, chis, chis, chimself. A set of gender-neutral pronouns listed in Merriam Webster's Dictionary of English Usage under epicene pronouns.[28]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke che laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug chim.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, chis hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow chis.Reflexive: Each child feeds chimself.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/che/chim/chis/chis/chimself
Coco, co, co's (cos), co's, coself. Mary Orovan created these in 1970, derived from the Indo-European *ko.[29][30]
Use in real life and non-fiction: "Co" is used in some intentional communities, such as in the legal policies of Twin Oaks in Virginia, which provides information on the pronoun in its visitor guide. It is sometimes used as a gender-blind pronoun by people who oppose gendered pronouns.
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke co laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug co.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, co's hair grows long. (Or cos hair grows.)Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow co's.Reflexive: Each child feeds coself.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/co/co/co's/co's/coself
EThere are several very similar sets of pronouns with the nominative form of "E," which have been independently proposed or revived over the last hundred years.[31][32] Sets of E pronouns listed in alphabetical order:
E, Em, Eir, Eirs, Emself. These are sometimes called spivak pronouns. In 1990, Michael Spivak used them in his manual, The Joy of TeX, so that no person in his examples had a specified gender. These pronouns became well-known on the Internet because they were built into a popular multi-user chat, LambdaMOO, in 1991. Many users enjoyed choosing pronouns that didn't specify their gender. The pronouns then became a common feature of other multi-user chats made throughout the 1990s. Although many other variations have been attributed to Michael Spivak, this is the actual set Spivak used in The Joy of TeX in 1990 or 1991. Note that he always capitalized all forms of it, but not all users of these pronouns do so. [33] Spivak doesn't indicate whether he created these pronouns, or adopted or adapted them from somewhere else. Spivak is credited with having created these pronouns, although his book doesn't outright say that they're of his own creation. (Compare Elverson's ey pronouns, which are very similar, with only a small spelling difference in the nominative form.)
Use in real life and non-fiction:
When a programmer added this pronoun set to LambdaMOO in 1991, he used the same spelling as Spivak, but not capitalized.[34] Regarding LambdaMOO, John Costello wrote, "I know the wizard who originally included the spivak pronouns on the MOO. He says he did it just on a whim after having read the Joy of TeX '-- he never thought they'd acquire the sexual and political nimbus they have over the years."[35] LambdaMOO's "help spivak" command explains that these pronouns "were developed by mathematician Michael Spivak for use in his books."[36] Programmer Roger "Rog" Crew tested the LambdaMOO system by putting more pronoun options into it in May, 1991, including Spivak's set he remembered from The Joy of TeX. Crew didn't delete the pronouns after testing them, and later expressed "dismay" that the spivak pronouns became popular.[37][38]Spivak pronouns became such a part of 1990s Internet culture that a handbook to that culture, Yib's Guide to Mooing (2003), uses spivak pronouns whenever speaking of a hypothetical person whose gender need not be specified.[39]In Internet environments, spivak was categorized not only as a set of pronouns, but as a gender identity, which Thomas describes: "The spivak gender [...] is more representative of an emotional and intellectual state than of a physical configuration. It should be pointed out at the start that the sexuality available to a spivak is a bonus of online life, but it isn't the raison d'etre. Rather, it's a subtle notion of a gender-free condition. It's not androgynous. It's not unisexual. It's simply ambiguous."[40] Some self-described spivaks use spivak as a proper noun for their non-binary gender identity.Use in fiction:
Steven Shaviro's theoretical fiction novel Doom Patrols (1995-1997) uses spivak pronouns at times.[41]The English translation of Sayuri Ueda's science fiction novel The Cage of Zeus (2011) uses spivak pronouns for genetically engineered characters with non-dyadic bodies and non-binary gender.[42]Use for real non-binary people:
In 1996, 74 out of 7064 users on LambdaMOO went by spivak pronouns, making it the second most popular nonbinary pronoun there.[43] In 2002, 108 out of 4061 users on LambdaMOO used spivak pronouns, making it the most popular neologistic pronoun set there.[44]In 1996, 10 out of 1015 users on MediaMOO went by spivak pronouns, making these the second most popular nonbinary pronoun.[45]The author Bogi "prezzey" Takcs goes by spivak pronouns.[46]Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke E laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug Em.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, Eir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow Eirs.Reflexive: Each child feeds Emself.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/e
e, em, es (e's), (e's), emself. Created in 1890 by James Rogers of Crestview, Florida.[47][48] In about 1977, version where all forms starts with capital letters was independently "created by psychologist Donald G. MacKay of the University of California at Los Angeles."[49] In 1989, independently created by Victor J. Stone, Professor of Law.[50]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke e laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug em.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, es hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?E, em, ir, irs, ?. Created by Anj Kroeger in 1989, in response to a highschool essay prompt on things to change about the English language. Kroeger proposed this gender-neutral pronoun set based on a mixture of "he" and "she" pronouns. Only the nominative form, E, is capitalized. Ir is pronounced like the word "ear." The paper didn't mention a reflexive form.[51]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke E laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug em.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, ir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow irs.Reflexive: ?e, rim, ris, ?, ?. Created by Werner Low, and printed in a 1977 issue of Washington Post.[52]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke e laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug rim.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, ris hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?Elverson pronounsSee ey.
Emem, ?, ems, ems, ?. Created in 1977 by "Jeffrey J. Smith, [who] felt strongly enough about them to start the Em Institute and put out the Em Institute Newsletter under the pseudonym 'TIN-TAJL jefry'".[53]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke em laughs.Accusative: ?Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, ems hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow ems.Reflexive: ?Etet, et, ets, ets, etself. Created by Aline Hoffman of Sarnia, Ontario, and published in Brave New Words (1979).[54]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke et laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug et.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, ets hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow ets.Reflexive: Each child feeds etself.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/et/et/ets/ets/etself
Eyey, em, eir, eirs, emself. (Compare the spivak pronoun E, which is very similar, with only a small spelling difference in the nominative form.) Called the Elverson pronouns, these were "created by Christine M. Elverson of Skokie, Illinois, to win a contest in 1975. (Black, Judie, 'Ey has a word for it', 1975-08-23.). Promoted as preferable to other major contenders (sie, zie and singular 'they') by John Williams's Gender-neutral Pronoun FAQ (2004)."[55]
Use in real life and non-fiction: The Elverson pronouns were used by Eric Klein in the Laws of Oceania, 1993, to be gender-inclusive in a nonfictional micronation. Sometimes this pronoun set is mistakenly called "spivak pronouns," which differ only in the nominative form.
Use in fiction:
CJ Carter's science fiction novel, Que Ser Serees (2011) is about a species of people with a single gender, who are all called by Elverson's "ey" pronouns. Carter encourages other authors to use these gender-neutral pronouns.[56][57]In K. A. Cook's short story "Misstery Man," the self-described non-binary character Darcy asks to be called by "ey and eir" pronouns.[58]Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ey laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug em.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, eir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow eirs.Reflexive: Each child feeds emself.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/ey
FaeSee nounself pronouns.
FawnSee nounself pronouns.
Female pronounsSee She.
Haha, hem, hez, ?, ?. Coined in 1927, [59] and "attributed by H. L. Mencken to Lincoln King, of Primghar, Iowa."[60]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ha laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug hem.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hez hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?Hehe, him, his, his, himself. Often called male pronouns, grammarians acknowledge that this standard set of pronouns can also be used as gender-neutral or gender-inclusive pronouns for unspecified persons, such as in instructions and legal documents. In the eighteenth century, when prescriptive grammarians decided that "singular they" was no longer acceptable as a gender-neutral pronoun, they instead recommended "gender-neutral he." "Prescriptive grammarians have been calling for 'he' as the gender-neutral pronoun of choice since at least 1745, when a British schoolmistress named Anne Fisher laid down the law in A New Grammar."[61] The use of "gender-neutral he" can make problems in how laws are interpreted, because it's unclear whether it is meant to be gender-inclusive or male-only. For example, in 1927, "the Canadian Supreme Court ruled that women were not persons because its statutes referred to 'persons' with male pronouns."[62][63] In the USA in the nineteenth century, suffragists Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton fought for laws to stop using the "gender-neutral he," because there were cases where this pronoun had been arbitrarily interpreted as a "male he" in order to exclude women from legal protections, or from the right to a license that they had passed exams for. This abuse of legal language happened even in if the documents explicitly said that "he" was meant to include women.[64] Thanks to work in the 1970s by feminists Casey Miller and Kate Swift, "gender-neutral he" has been significantly phased out of use, replaced by the more inclusive he or she.[65]
Use for real non-binary people: There are non-binary people who ask to be called by "he" pronouns, such as comedian Eddie Izzard, writer Richard O'Brien, songwriter Antony Hegarty, and guitarist Pete Townshend.
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke he laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug him.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, his hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow his.Reflexive: Each child feeds himself.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/he
He'erhe'er, him'er, his'er, his'er's, his'er'self. An inclusive pronoun that was proposed in 1912 by Ella Flagg Young.[66][67]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke he'er laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug him'er.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, his'er hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow his'er's.Reflexive: Each child feeds his'er'self.HeeshSeveral sets of pronouns use "heesh" in the nominative form, the oldest from 1934. The idea is to combine "he" and "she" to create an inclusive pronoun. In alphabetical order:
heesh, ?, heesh's, heesh's, heeshself. Poul Anderson used these in a science fiction story, The Day of Their Return (1973) to refer to a species with three sexes.[68]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke heesh laughs.Accusative: ?Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, heesh's hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow heesh's.Reflexive: Each child feeds heeshself.heesh, herm, hiser, hisers, hermself. Created in 1978 by Leonara Timm, in the International Journal of Women's Studies.[69][70] Caution: herm is also an offensive word for an intersex person.
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke heesh laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug herm.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hiser hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow hisers.Reflexive: Each child feeds hermself.heesh, himer, hiser, ?, ?. Created in 1934.[71]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke heesh laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug himer.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hiser hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?heesh, hir, hir, ?, ?. This was the earliest recorded example of the gender-neutral pronoun "hir" on the Internet, which was in a science fiction fan newsgroup in 1981.[72][73]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke heesh laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug hir.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?He or shehe or she, him or her, his or her, his or hers, himself or herself. These are very commonly used as gender-neutral pronouns for unspecified persons, such as in instructions and legal documents. Although grammatically acceptable, and a step more inclusive than only using "he" in these contexts, its length soon makes it cumbersome.[74] It almost always puts the "male" pronoun before the "female" pronoun, which is a little less than equality. It gives the impression of including binary genders, while excluding the possibility of other genders.
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke he or she laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug him or her.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, his or her hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow his or hers.Reflexive: Each child feeds himself or herself.HeshSeveral sets of neologistic pronouns use "hesh" in the nominative form, in an attempt to combine "he" and "she." In alphabetical order:
hesh, himmer, hizzer, ?, ?. Created in 1927.[75]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke hesh laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug himmer.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hizzer hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?hesh, hiser, himer, himer, hermself. Created by feminist Jan Verley Archer in the 1975 issue of Media Report to Women.[76][77] Caution: "herm" is also an offensive word for an intersex person.
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke hesh laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug hiser.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, himer hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow himer.Reflexive: Each child feeds hermself.HesheSeveral sets of neologistic pronouns use "heshe" in the nominative form, in an attempt to combine "he" and "she" to create an inclusive pronoun. Caution: "he-she" is also an offensive word for a transgender person. In alphabetical order:
heshe, hem, hes, ?, ?. Created in 1981, combining "he" and "she".[78]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke heshe laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug hem.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hes hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?heshe, himmer, hisher, ?, ?. Created in 1977.[79]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke heshe laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug himmer.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hisher hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?Heyhey, ?, heir, heirs, ?. Created in 1979 by Paul Encimer, with the intent to combine "he" and "their" to create an inclusive pronoun.[80][81]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke hey laughs.Accusative: ?Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, heir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow heirs.Reflexive: ?HiSeveral sets of gender-neutral pronouns use "hi" in the nominative form. In alphabetical order, they are:
hi, hem, hes, ?, ?. Created in 1884 by Francis H. Williams.[82][83]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke hi laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug hem.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hes hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?hi, hir, hir, hirs, hirself. According to Kip Manley, this set of pronouns was used in some science fiction in the 1980s. However, Manley wasn't able to give any examples.[84]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke hi laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug hir.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow hirs.Reflexive: Each child feeds hirself.Hiehie, hie (?), hiez (?), ov hie, ?. In 1914, Mont Follick created this pronoun set, based on the pronunciation of "he" pronouns. Follick proposed that we reform the language so that these replace all third person singular pronouns in English.[85]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke hie laughs.Accusative: ?Pronominal possessive: ?Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow ov hie.Reflexive: ?Hoho, hom, hos, ?, homself. Derived from Latin homo, "human", and the prefix homo-, "the same, equal, like." Created by Donald K. Darnell in a 1976 issue of Persons Communicating. [86][87]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ho laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug hom.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hos hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: Each child feeds homself.Huhu, hum, hus, hus, huself. A set of gender-neutral "humanist" pronouns, based on the word "human". "Used in several college humanities texts published by Bandanna Books. Originated by editor Sasha Newborn in 1982."[88] The creation of these pronouns is also attributed to "DeAnn DeLuna, who teaches literature at Johns Hopkins University," who pronounces them like "huh." When DeLuna "recently edited a book of essays about historian J.G.A. Pocock [she] insisted that the book's writers use the [hu] pronoun," and many people use the hu pronouns "in the online forums of the Chronicle of Higher Education's Web site."[89] Jake Shivery runs a small web-site about the hu pronoun, hupronoun.org, which says it's pronounced "hyu," like the beginning of the word "human."
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke hu laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug hum.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hus hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow hus.Reflexive: Each child feeds huself.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/hu
HumanistSee Hu.
Idid, idre, ids, ids, idself. Used by Laurie Marks for characters of a genderless species in all three books of the Children of the Triad fantasy novel series: Delan the Mislaid (1989), The Moonbane Mage (1990), and Ara's Field (1991). Marks uses these pronouns for the title character and protagonist of the first book.[90]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke id laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug idre.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, ids hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow ids.Reflexive: Each child feeds idself.Itit, it, its, its, itself. This standard English set of genderless pronouns is used for inanimate objects, animals, and human infants. During Dickens' time, these were also acceptable pronouns for older human children and spirits of the dead, as these permutations of humanity were seen as not really male or female. This pronoun is not male or female. Using it for an adult human is often seen as an insult, dehumanizing. While considered offensive by most, some nonbinary people use "it" as a means of reclamation and to challenge the idea that genderlessness is inherently dehumanizing.
Because "it" pronouns are the default on LamdaMOO and on similar multi-user environments, they tend to be common there, but less common than "he" or "she." In 1996, "it" pronouns were the most popular non-binary pronoun choice on LambdaMOO (1162 out of 7065 player characters) and MediaMOO (280 out of 1015 player characters).[91]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke it laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug it.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, its hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow its.Reflexive: Each child feeds itself.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/it
Ipip, ip, ips, ips, ipsself. Proposed in 1884 by Emma Carleton, probably derived from "it."[92][93]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ip laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug ip.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, ips hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow ips.Reflexive: Each child feeds ipself.Irir, im, iro, iros, iroself. A set of English gender-neutral pronouns from 1888.[94][95]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ir laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug im.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, iro hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow iros.Reflexive: Each child feeds iroself.Kaikai, kaim, kais, kais, kaiself. A set of English gender-neutral pronouns created by novelist Janet Ganus for nonbinary characters, in 1998 or earlier.[96] Ganus also created a matching gender-neutral title, Kaiet, which is also a proper noun that serves the gender-neutral counterpart of "man" or "woman."
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke kai laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug kaim.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, kais hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow kais.Reflexive: Each child feeds kaiself.Lele, lem, les, les, lesself. A set of English gender-neutral pronouns proposed in 1884 by Edgar Alfred Stevens, borrowed from French.[97][98]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke le laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug lem.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, les hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow les.Reflexive: Each child feeds lesself.Male pronounsSee he.
MemevectorSee ze, em, zeir, zeirs, zeirself.
Nana, nan, nan, nan's, naself. June Arnold's story The Cook and the Carpenter, 1973, used this set of pronouns exclusively, for all people. Arnold may have created the pronouns.[99]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke na laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug nan.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, nan hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow nan's.Reflexive: Each child feeds naself.NameSee no pronouns or Nounself pronouns.
NeSeveral sets of pronouns use "ne" in the nominative form. In alphabetical order:
ne, nem, nir, nirs, nemself. In Spectra, a science fiction comic by Cori Walters, characters with nonbinary genders are called by these pronouns. Walters uses this pronoun for one of the three gender roles in a species that has only one sex, and all people voluntarily choose their gender roles. The comic started in 2013 and is still in progress.[100]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ne laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug nem.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, nir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow nirs.Reflexive: Each child feeds nemself.ne, ner, nis, nis, nemself. In a 1974 issue of Today's Education, "Mildred Fenner attributes this to Fred Wilhelms."[101][102] Veterinarian Al Lippart independently proposed the same set of pronouns in 1999, recommending them for use when it would be inappropriate to specify the gender of a human, animal, or deity.[103]Lawyer Roberta Morris also independently proposed this same set of pronouns in 2009, saying that these pronouns would be more efficient for within the 140 character limit of Twitter than "he or she." Morris also pointed out that the "n" can refer to "neuter."[104]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ne laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug ner.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, nis hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow nis.Reflexive: Each child feeds nemself.ne, nim, nis, ?, ?. Created around 1850,[105], and appeared in print in 1884.[106]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ne laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug nim.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, nis hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?No pronounsMany people prefer not to be referred to by pronouns, and may feel dysphoria otherwise. Thirty-six percent of the lottelodge survey answered "Just my name" to the question "What are your preferred pronouns?". (Multiple answers were permitted.)
While the grammatical labels on the sample sentences below are no longer correct, the sentences can be adjusted to exclude pronouns while still talking about a specific person.
Nominative:(Demonstrative + noun replaces pronoun) When I tell someone a joke, that person laughs.Accusative:(Eliminated second reference to the person) I greet my friend with a hug.Pronominal possessive:(Replaced with an "it" that technically has no antecedent but clearly refers to the possessed thing) When someone does not get a haircut, it grows long.Predicative possessive:(Possessive eliminated) If my mobile phone runs out of power, my friend lends me another.Reflexive:(Reflexive emphasizing independence replaced with adverb) Each child gets food independently.Using names or descriptions without changing the sentence structure:
Nominative: When I tell Taylor a joke Taylor laughs.Accusative: When I greet Sylvia I hug Sylvia.Pronominal possessive: When the kid does not get a haircut, the kid's hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow the friend's.Reflexive:Larry feeds Larry.Other noteworthy techniques for removing third-person pronouns from a sentence include
Passive voice: "Taylor's mopping the kitchen. When ? finishes, we'll go for a walk" becomes "Taylor's mopping the kitchen. When it's done, we'll go for a walk." Here "it" refers to the kitchen or maybe the task of mopping, and we use passive voice because there's no need to repeat who's doing it.Second person: Instead of talking about someone in third person, why not talk to them instead? Say you're talking to Kevin and Elisa, who prefers no third-person pronouns, is in the room. You could tell Kevin, "I'd love to go with you for coffee, but Elisa's already claimed me for the evening," but if you do that and want to start expanding on what Elisa's up to, you might be tempted to use third-person pronouns. Instead you could shift to Elisa and say "but you've got me booked for the evening," and then Elisa could tell about the plans without being spoken for.Nounself pronounsStarting in early 2014, or perhaps late 2013, a community of non-binary gender people on the social blogging site Tumblr.com came up with the idea of "nounself pronouns." (Some call these "otherkin pronouns," but few otherkin use them, and not all using them are otherkin.) By adapting any noun of one's choosing into a pronoun, one can create a wide variety of very personal and descriptive pronouns. The sets can be themed around concepts that have nothing to do with gender, such as nature, technology, or abstract concepts. Some of the earliest sets of nounself pronouns, which might actually be from earlier than 2014, are the fairy themed set "fae, fae, faer, faers, faeself", and the bunny themed set "bun, bun, buns, buns, bunself". During 2014, the community created about a hundred sets of such pronouns, and many were adopted as the pronouns of particular non-binary people, so they're seeing actual use. Unlike most neologistic pronouns that are listed on this wiki page, which are intended to be used for all people regardless of gender, nounself pronouns are intended to be used by only a small number of people who feel that they express what is distinctive about themselves. Nounself pronouns are a creative and often light-hearted experiment in gender expression. Nounself pronouns can be especially difficult to use for people who speak English as a second language, or who are neurodivergent or disabled. For this reason, if you ask others to call you by nounself pronouns, it's good etiquette to offer a secondary set of more standard pronouns, for accessibility.[107]
Forms: An example using the fairy-themed fae, fae, faer, faers, faeself set:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke fae laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug fae.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, faer hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow faers.Reflexive: Each child feeds faeself.An alphabetical list of nounself pronouns, and their origins. More of these sets have been proposed than have been used.
ai, ain, aire, aires, aiself. Created by Tumblr user trashqan in 2014.[108] A robot themed set.aqua, ?, aquas, aquas, aquariuself. Created by Tumblr user togamiscontinentaltie in 2014.[109] Zodiac themed set.ari, ?, aires, aires, aireself. Created by Tumblr user togamiscontinentaltie in 2014.[110] Zodiac themed set (Aries).au, aut, auto, autos, autoself. Created by Tumblr user trashqan in 2014.[111] A robot themed set.bee, bee, beets, beets, beetleself. Created by Tumblr user princenstolas in 2014.[112] An insect (beetle) themed set.beer, beer, bier, beer's, beerself. Honorific: Crvza. Created by Tumblr user kleenexwoman in 2012. Ale pronouns.boo, boo, boo's, boo's, booself. Created by Tumblr user boyghostly in 2014.[113] A monster or ghost themed set.bot (bo), bot, bots, bots, botself. Created by Tumblr user plantprincen in 2014,[114] and independently created by Tumblr user birdfae in 2014.[115] A robot themed set.bu, bu, buz, buz, buzzself. Created by Tumblr user princenstolas in 2014.[116] An insect themed set.bud, bud, buds, buds, budself. A plant themed set created by Tumblr user plantprincen in 2014 (or earlier?)[117]bug, bug, bugs, bugs, bugself. Created by Tumblr user princenstolas in 2014.[118] An insect themed set.bun, bun, buns, buns, bunself. A bunny themed set created by Tumblr user bonniebelbubblegum in 2014 (or earlier?)[119]byte, byte, bytes, bytes, byteself. Created by Tumblr user huntersgotellis in 2014.[120] A robot or technology themed set.cancer, ?, cans, ?, canself. Created by Tumblr user togamiscontinentaltie in 2014.[121] Zodiac themed set (Cancer).[122]cap, ?, capris, ?, capriself. Created by Tumblr user togamiscontinentaltie in 2014.[123] Zodiac themed set (Capricorn).compute, compute, computes, computes, computeself. Created by Tumblr user huntersgotellis in 2014.[124] A robot themed set.cub, cub, cubs, cubs, cubself. Origin unknown, please add it if you find it. It was likely created by a Tumblr user in 2014. Animal themed set.[125]cy, cyb, cyber, cybers, cyberself. Created by Tumblr user trashqan in 2014.[126] A robot themed set.dre, droid, droids, droids, droidself. Created by Tumblr user trashqan in 2014.[127] A robot themed set.ecto, ecto, ects, ects, ectself. Created by Tumblr user chemicalgalaxy in 2014.[128] A horror, ghost, or ectoplasm themed set.fae, faer, faer, faers, faerself. A fairy (faery, faerie, fey or Fair Folk) themed set created by Ciel (Tumblr user shadaras) in 2014 (or earlier?).[129] It may also have been independently coined earlier.faun, faun, fauns, fauns, faunself. Created by Tumblr user faerieli in 2014.[130][131] A Greek mythology (faun) themed setfawn, fawn, fawns, fawns, fawnself. An animal themed set created by Tumblr user genderorb in 2014 (or earlier?).[132]fel, fel, felis, felis, feliself. Created by Tumblr user genderviking in 2014.[133] Feline themed set.[134]fey, fey, feys, feys, feyself. Origin unknown, please add if you find it. A fairy (faery, faerie, fey, or Fair Folk) themed set.[135]fin, fin, fins, fins, finsself. Created by Tumblr user boyghostly in 2014.[136] A sea themed set.fluff, fluff, fluffs, fluffs, fluffself. A light-hearted and possibly animal-themed set created by Tumblr user subcinere in 2014 (or earlier?)[137]gem, ?, gemis, gemis, geminiself. Created by Tumblr user togamiscontinentaltie in 2014.[138] Zodiac themed set for Gemini.[139]gem, gem, gems, gems, gemself. A "magical girl" themed set created by Vivid (Tumblr user dadhomura) in 2014 (or earlier?)[140].giga, giga, gigas, gigas, gigaself. Created by Tumblr user huntersgotellis in 2014.[141] A robot themed set.gill, gill, gills, gills, gillself. Created by Tumblr user boyghostly in 2014.[142] A sea themed set.glit, glitter, glitter, glitters, glitterself. A "magical girl" themed set created by Vivid (Tumblr user dadhomura) in 2014 (or earlier?)[143]gro, ?, gross, gross, goreself. A horror themed set created by Tumblr user disinfoagent in 2014.[144]hart, hart, harts, hart's, hartself. A deer themed set created by genderviking in 2014.[145][146]haun, ?, haunts, haunts, hauntself. Created by Tumblr user chemicalgalaxy in 2014.[147] A horror (haunt) themed set.hy, hy, hydras, hydras, hydraself. Created by Tumblr user faerieli in 2014.[148][149] Greek mythological being (hydra) themed set.[150]inter, inter, inters, inters, interself. Created by Tumblr user huntersgotellis in 2014.[151] A technology themed set.kelp, kelp, kelps, kelps, kelpself. A nature themed set created by Tumblr user acedragons in 2014,[152] and independently created by Tumblr user boyghostly in 2014.[153]kit, kit, kits, kits, kitself. Origin unknown, please add if you find it. An animal themed set.[154]leo, leo, leos, leos, leoself. An animal (lion) or Zodiac (Leo) themed set created by Tumblr user genderviking in 2014,[155] and independently created by Tumblr user togamiscontinentaltie in 2014.[156]lib, ?, libras, ?, libraself. Created by Tumblr user nakedmolerat in 2014.[157] Zodiac themed set (Libra).lun, lun, luns, luns, lunself. Created by Tumblr user baramages in 2014.[158] A space themed set.lynx, lynx, ?, ?, lynxself. An animal (feline) themed set created by Tumblr user genderviking in 2014.[159][160]mechie, mechien, mechs, mechs, mechself. Created by Tumblr user trashqan in 2014.[161] A robot themed set.meow, mew, mews, mews, meowself. Created by Tumblr user huntersgotellis in 2014.[162] An animal (cat) themed set.mer, mer, mers, mers (mermai), merself. Created by Tumblr user boyghostly in 2014.[163] Independently created by Tumblr user princenstolas in 2014, but with the "mermai" variation.[164] Sea or mermaid themed pronouns.[165]neb, neb, ?, ?, nebself. Created by Tumblr user baramages in 2014.[166] A space themed (nebula) set.nov, nov, novs, novs, novself. Created by Tumblr user baramages in 2014.[167] A space themed (nova) set.paw, paw, paws, paws, pawself. Created by Tumblr user huntersgotellis in 2014.[168] An animal themed set.purr, purr, purrs, purrs, purrself. Created by Tumblr user huntersgotellis in 2014.[169]ram, ram, rams, rams, ramself. Created by Tumblr user huntersgotellis in 2014.[170] A robot themed set.sagit, sagit, sagits, sagits, sagittself. Created by Tumblr user togamiscontinentaltie in 2014.[171] Zodiac themed set (Sagittarius).scor, scor, scorpios (scorps), scorpios (scorps), scorpioself (scorpself). Created by Tumblr user togamiscontinentaltie in 2014.[172] Independently created by Tumblr user princenstolas in 2014.[173] Zodiac themed set (Scorpio) or animal (scorpion) themed set.spide, spide, spides, spides, spiderself. Created by Tumblr user princenstolas in 2014.[174] An animal (spider) themed set.spiri, ?, spirs, spirs, spirself. Created by Tumblr user chemicalgalaxy in 2014.[175] A horror (spirit) themed set.squeak, squeak, squeaks, squeaks, squeakself. Created by Tumblr user faerieli in 2014.[176] An animal themed set.squid, ?, squids, squids, squidself. Created by Tumblr user enbyprincen in 2014.[177] An animal (squid) themed set.stag, stag, stags, stags, stagself. An animal themed set created by Tumblr user genderviking in 2014.[178][179]star, star, stars, stars, starself. A nature themed set created by Tumblr user bonnibelbubblegum in 2014.[180] Independently created by Tumblr user baramages in 2014.[181]taur, taur, taurus, taurus, tauruself. Created by Tumblr user nakedmolerat in 2014.[182] Zodiac themed set (Taurus).tech, techne, techan, techans, techself. Created by Tumblr user trashqan in 2014.[183] A robot themed set.tik, tik, tiks, tiks, tikself. Created by Tumblr user lysanderandco in 2014.[184] Clock or time themed set.tok, tok, toks, toks, tokself. Created by Tumblr user lysanderandco in 2014.[185] Clock or time themed set.vam, vamp, vamps, vamps, vampself. Origin unknown, please add if you find it. A vampire themed set.[186]vir, vir, virgos, virgos, virgoself. Created by Tumblr user togamiscontinentaltie in 2014.[187] Zodiac themed set (Virgo).voi, void, voids, voids, voidself. Created by Tumblr user baramages in 2014.[188] A space themed set.ware, ware, wares, wares, wareself. Created by Tumblr user huntersgotellis in 2014.[189][190] A robot or technology themed set.whisker, whisker, whiskers, whiskers, whiskerself. Created by Tumblr user huntersgotellis in 2014.[191] A cat or animal themed set.whomp, whizz, whirr, whirrs, whizelf. Created by Tumblr user trashqan in 2014.[192] A robot themed set.wer, wer, weres, weres, wereself. Created by Tumblr user princenstolas in 2014.[193] A monster (werewolf) themed set.wit, witch, ?, ?, witchself. Created by Tumblr user princenstolas in 2014.[194] Tumblr user bigendeer then pointed out that these should only be used by people who identify as witches, out of respect for people with those spiritual beliefs.[195]wy, wir, wire, wires, wirself. Created by Tumblr user trashqan in 2014.[196] A robot themed set.Oneone, one, one's, one's, oneself. This is a standard English set of pronouns used for a hypothetical person whose gender is not specified.
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke one laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug one.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, one's hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow one's.Reflexive: Each child feeds oneself.Otherkin pronounsSee nounself pronouns.
Ouou, ou, ous, ous, ouself. A set of singular gender-neutral pronouns that were first recorded in a native English dialect the sixteenth century. "In 1789, William H. Marshall records the existence of a dialectal English epicene pronoun, singular ou: '"Ou will" expresses either he will, she will, or it will.' Marshall traces ou to Middle English epicene a, used by the fourteenth-century English writer John of Trevisa, and both the OED and Wright's English Dialect Dictionary confirm the use of a for he, she, it, they, and even I."[197]
Use in fiction: In K. A. Cook's short story "The Differently Animated and Queer Society," the character Moon asks to be called by "ou" pronouns.[198]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ou laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug ou.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, ous hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow ous.Reflexive: Each child feeds ouself.Pehpeh, pehm, ?, peh's, ?. Used by Jenn Manley Lee in a science fiction graphic novel, Dicebox, as a gender non-specific pronoun, for when a person's gender is either irrelevant or nonbinary.[199][200]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke peh laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug pehm.Pronominal possessive: ?Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow peh's.Reflexive: ?On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/peh
Perper (person), per, per, pers, perself. Called "person pronouns," these are meant to be used for a person of any gender. Compare Phelps's phe pronouns, which are also based on the word "person." John Clark created "per" pronouns in a 1972 issue of the Newsletter of the American Anthropological Association.[201]
Use in real life and non-fiction: Person pronouns were one of the sets of pronouns built in to MediaMOO for users to choose from.[202] Richard Ekins and Dave King used these pronouns in the book The Transgender Phenomenon (2006).[203]
Use in fiction: In Marge Piercy's feminist novel, Woman on the Edge of Time, 1976, Piercy used "per" pronouns for all citizens of a utopian future in which gender was no longer seen as a big difference between people.[204]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke per laughs. (Or person laughs.)Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug per.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, per hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow pers.Reflexive: Each child feeds perself.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/per
Phephe, per, per, pers, perself. In Katherine Phelps's 1998 retelling of The Odyssey,Oddyseus, She, in which the genders of people are reversed, Phelps uses these gender-neutral pronouns for deities, because the deities' "specific gender or shape are completely optional." Like Piercy's similar per pronouns, Phelps's "phe" pronouns are "based on the shortening of 'person.'[205][206]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke phe laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug per.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, per hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow pers.Reflexive: Each child feeds perself.Racial pronounsIn Douglas Hofstadter's short satirical essay, "A Person Paper on Purity in Language," the fictional William Satire describes a world in which racism is so pervasive that even pronouns have long been based around race instead of gender. In Person Paper, William Satire criticizes an equally fictional activist (apparently modeled after the non-fictional Casey Miller) who had taken an objection "to the age-old differentiation of whites from blacks by the third-person pronouns 'whe' and 'ble.' Ble promotes an absurd notion: that what we really need in English is a single pronoun covering both races. Numerous suggestions have been made, such as 'pe,' 'tey,' and others, These are all repugnant to the nature of the English language, as the average white in the street will testify, even if whe has no linguistic training whatsoever."[207] In the essay's hypothesized world, where racism is even more deeply embedded in language than it is in the real world, non-racist language and race-neutral pronouns are seen as controversial changes. Hofstadter uses this imagined scenario to make it visible to us how much sexism is in our language. It demonstrates how the pervasiveness of discriminatory language is taken for granted and used to undermine oppressed peoples. The essay is effective in its intention to show how pervasive sexism is in real life. However, despite the essay's best efforts, it still downplays how racism actually does pervade language and daily life, and therefore makes racism look as if it was a smaller problem than sexism. This flaw is an example of a ethnicity and culture#false comparison, where making a comparison between racism and sexism means overlooking important differences between them.
These pronouns were never meant to be used. Don't use them. In real life, nobody has proposed racial pronouns in earnest.
Rere, erm, rees, rees, ?. In 2002, atheist activist Mike Newdow proposed these to replace all use of "he" and "she" pronouns.[208]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke re laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug erm.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, rees hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow rees.Reflexive: ?SeThere are several similar sets that use "se" in the nominative form, the oldest of which was created in 1938. A list of its versions in alphabetical order:
se, ?, ?, ?, ?. Created in 1975.[209]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke se laughs.Accusative: ?Pronominal possessive: ?Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?se, hir, hir, hirs, hirself. In Richard Lupoff's short science fiction story "With the Bentfin Boomer Boys on Little Ol' New Alabama" (1977?), Lupoff used these pronouns for an entity comprised of a female extraterrestrial being inhabiting a dead male human body.[210] In 1992, this set of gender-neutral pronouns was commonly used on the Internet in newsgroups such as alt.sex.bondage.[211]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke se laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug hir.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow hirs.Reflexive: Each child feeds hirself.se, sem, ses, ?, ?. Created in 1990.[212] Used for non-dyadic characters in Glenn Grant's story Memetic Drift, "published in Interzone magazine #34, March/April 1990; reprinted in Northern Stars: The Anthology of Canadian Science Fiction, Tor hardcover, 1994, edited by the author and G. Hartwell."[213]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke se laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug sem.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, ses hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?se, sim, ser, ?, simself. Created in 1973 by William Cowan, of the Department of Linguistics, Carleton University.[214][215]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke se laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug sim.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, ser hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: Each child feeds simself.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/ser
se, sim, sis, ?, ?. Created in 1938 by Gregory Hynes.[216][217]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke se laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug sim.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, sis hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?Sheshe, her, her, hers, herself. Often called female pronouns, although in standard usage, they're not used exclusively for women. Grammarians agree that it is standard and acceptable for this set to be used for women, female animals, and ships. The set is also poetically used for countries and fields of studies, which grammarians also see as acceptable. Some feminists recommend replacing "gender-neutral he" with "gender-neutral she." "In 1970, Dana Densmore's article ''Speech is the Form of Thought'' appeared in No More Fun and Games: A Journal of Female Liberation; Densmore is evidently the first U.S. advocate of 'she' as a gender-neutral pronoun, a solution many writers, particularly academic writers, favor today."[218] 1974, Gena Corea recommended replacing the "gender-neutral he" with a "gender-neutral she," and like Denmore, argued that the word "she" would be understood to include the word "he."[219]
Use as a gender-neutral pronoun in fiction:
Anne Leckie's science fiction novels Ancillary Justice (2013) and Ancillary Sword (2014) were set in a futuristic society that is indifferent to gender, so all the characters are called by gender-neutral "she" pronouns, leaving their actual gender and sex undisclosed. Leckie says she had an assumption at the time that gender is binary, so these are likely not non-binary characters.[220]Cartoonist Rebecca Sugar explained that in her animated science fiction series, Steven Universe, the alien people called Gems really have no sex or gender, even though they all look like women. For this reason, the Gems are only arbitrarily called by "she" pronouns. Sugar said, "Technically, there are no female Gems! There are only Gems! [...] Why not look like human females? That's just what Gems happen to look like! [...] There's a 50 50 chance to use some pronoun on Earth, so why not feminine ones-- it's as convenient as it is arbitrary!"[221] This is a gender-neutral use of "she" pronouns.Use for real non-binary people: There are non-binary gender people who ask people to use "she" pronouns for them, such as actor Rain Dove, singer-songwriter Ellie Jackson, musician JD Samson, singer Kieran Strange, and actor Tilda Swinton.
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke she laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug her.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, her hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow hers.Reflexive: Each child feeds herself.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/she
S/heSeveral sets of pronouns use "s/he" in the nominative form. In alphabetical order:
s/he, h/er, h/er, h/ers, h/erself. Singer-songwriter Genesis Breyer P-orridge asks others to use this set of pronouns for h/erself.[222]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke s/he laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug h/er.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, h/er hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow h/ers.Reflexive: Each child feeds h/erself.s/he (sHe), hir, hir, hirs, hirself. A set of English gender-neutral pronouns used in books by Timothy Leary in the 1970s, and then by counterculture writers influenced by Leary. It was used in non-fiction writings about spirituality by the Elf Queen's Daughters and the Silver Elves from the 1970s to the present 2010s. It was also used in fiction in Peter David's Star Trek books.[223] Sometimes with mixed caps, as shown.
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke s/he laughs. (Or sHe laughs.)Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug hir.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow hirs.Reflexive: Each child feeds hirself.SHeSee she or s/he.
Shemshem, hem, hes, ?, ?. Created in 1974.[224]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke shem laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug hem.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hes hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?Sheyshey, shem, sheir, sheirs, sheirself. The same set was independently created (or perhaps only used) in 1973, 1979, and 1982.[225][226] The idea is to combine "she" and "they."
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke shey laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug shem.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, sheir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow sheirs.Reflexive: Each child feeds sheirself.Siesie, hir, hir, hirs, hirself. Pronounced like either "she" and "her," or "see" and "hear." Derived from German pronouns for "she" and "they." [227] Since the early 1990s, this set has been widely used on the Internet for gender-neutral language when speaking of no specific person, for nonbinary gender characters, and by nonbinary gender people themselves. Use in fiction: Elizabeth Bear used these pronouns in a fantasy novel, Dust.[228]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke sie laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug hir.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow hirs.Reflexive: Each child feeds hirself.Singular TheySee They.
SpivakSee E.
SplatSee *E.
StarSee either *E or nounself pronouns.
Teytey, tem, ter, ters, temself. A set of gender-neutral pronouns, proposed by feminists Casey Miller and Kate Swift in the 1971 December issue of Ms in earnest as a strategy to avoid "pronoun abuse" (meaning the inappropriate use of male pronouns when it would make more sense to include women as well), as one of many strategies to reduce sexist language. Later, they advocated instead for more widespread use of "he or she" for that purpose.[229]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke tey laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug tem.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, ter hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow ters.Reflexive: Each child feeds temself.TheSee ¾e or 3e.
Theythey, them, their, theirs, themself (or theirself, theirselves, or themselves). These are standard English pronouns for speaking of groups. Grammarians question and debate the validity of also using this set as "singular they," a gender-neutral pronoun for an individual whose gender isn't specified, because they feel unsatisfied by how it still works grammatically like a plural. (Similar to how we say "you are," even when referring to a singular "you.") However, "singular they" has been common usage in English for over a thousand years, as attested by many written documents. It was used so by Shakespeare, Jane Austen, the Oxford English Dictionary, Louis Carroll, C. S. Lewis, and others. Grammaticians only recently decided that it was ungrammatical to use in the singular, because it is still used with verbs as though it was a plural.[230] Though the grammar may be questionable, it is still standard use today.
Singular "they" gets a surprising number of complaints, considering people use it all the time for people whose gender is unknown. ("So, your doctor, what have they prescribed?" etc.) However, there are a lot of arguments that it's correct. This article on Motivated Grammar goes through a few reasons, including the fact that it's consistently been in use since Chaucer's time, around 1400.
A most comprehensive article about the history of singular "they" is Henry Churchyard's web-page, Singular 'Their' in Jane Austen and Elsewhere.
Most people are familiar with how singular "they" works, as plenty of people use it all the time without really thinking about it.
There are several versions of the reflexive form of this pronoun: "themself," "theirself," "theirselves," and "themselves." The Oxford Dictionary says that "themself" has been used since the 14th century for a person of unknown sex.[231] Dictionary.com says that "theirself" has also been used for this since about 1300.[232] The Free Dictionary adds that "theirself" and "theirselves" are more common in southern and midland US English.[233] Because both of these are for talking about a single person, they're both considered non-standard or informal usage, despite the hundreds of years of common usage. The plural form of "themselves" is supposed to be more formal, but can sound strange when used for a single person, because they are not several "selves," but one "self". This is another part of the plural/singular "they" problem. People differ about which version of the reflexive form they prefer. If someone asks to be called by "they" pronouns, it might be a good idea to ask which form of the reflexive form they prefer.
Use as a singular in fiction:
In a short sci-fi story by Benjanun Sriduangkaew, "Silent Bridge, Pale Cascade" (2013), one of the characters is described as a "neutrois," and called by "they" pronouns.[234][235]In Kameron Hurley's fantasy novel, Empire Ascendant, all people in a consent culture get to choose which of the five gender roles they identify with. Hurley calls characters who are "ungendered" by singular they pronouns.[236]In K. A. Cook's anthology Crooked Words, the character Chris asks to be called by "they" pronouns. Chris is in the short stories "Blue Paint, Chocolate and Other Similes" and "Everything In A Name."[237]Use for real non-binary people: Some nonbinary people ask to be called by "singular they" pronouns, including writer Ivan E. Coyote, actor Tom Phelan, actor Jiz Lee, singer-songwriter Rae Spoon, and rapper Raeen Roes. Deborah Rogers mentions having a trans male student who asked to be called by "they" pronouns.[238]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke they laugh.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug them.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, their hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow theirs.Reflexive: Each child feeds themself. Or: each child feeds theirself. Or: each child feeds theirselves. Or: each child feeds themselves.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/they
Thonthon, thon, thons, thon's, thonself. Charles Crozat Converse of Erie, Pennsylvania proposed this pronoun in 1858, based on a contraction of "that one."[239] (The Gender-Neutral Pronoun FAQ gives this pronoun's date as 1884 instead.)[240] The "thon" pronoun was included in Webster's International Dictionary (1910). "Thon" was used throughout the writings by the founders of chiropractic, B.J. and D.D. Palmer, in 1910, and is therefore familiar to chiropractors.[241]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke thon laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug thon.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, thons hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow thon's.Reflexive: Each child feeds thonself.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/they
Vv, v, v's, v's, ?. In 2011, trans writer, singer, and artist MxJustin Vivian Bond created this set of pronouns for people to use in reference to Bond. Bond created v's own set of pronouns, because v wasn't satisfied with any other gender-neutral pronouns that v had heard of. Bond wrote, "So what I've come up with is 'v'. Since my name is Justin Vivian Bond and since Vivian begins with a V and visually a V is two even sides which meet in the middle I would like v to be my pronoun."[242]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke v laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug 'v.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, v's hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow v's.Reflexive: ?VeThere are several sets of pronouns that use "ve" in the nominative form, the earliest of which was created in 1970. Listed in alphabetical order:
ve, ver, vis, vis, verself. A set of pronouns used-- but not created-- by Greg Egan for non-binary gender characters-- including artificial intelligences, as well as transgender humans who identify as a specific nonbinary gender they call "asex"-- in his novels Distress (1995) and Diaspora (1998).[243] In Alastair Reynolds's science fiction novel On the Steel Breeze, one character is called by these ve pronouns. The novel never gives any exposition about this character's sex, gender, or pronouns, and ver gender-neutrality doesn't influence the plot. The lack of remark gives the impression that a nonbinary gender is unremarkable, but this is also why some readers thought the pronouns were a misprint.[244] In Keri Hulme's mystery novel The Bone People (1984), a character is called by these ve pronouns.[245]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ve laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug ver.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, vis hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow virs.Reflexive: Each child feeds verself.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/ve
ve, vir, vis, ?, ?. Created in 1970, and published in the May issue of Everywoman.[246][247]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ve laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug vir.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, vis hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?ve, vim, vis, ?, ?. Appeared in print in a 1974 issue of Washington Post.[248][249]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ve laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug vim.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, vis hair grows long.Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?WheSee racial pronouns.
XeThere are several similar sets of neologistic gender-neutral pronouns that use "xe," "ze," "zhe," or "zie" in nominative form. Regardless of spelling, their nominative form is pronounced "zee," and was based on the pronoun sie. The earliest documented version was created in 1972.[250] In alphabetical order, versions of this pronoun set include:
xe, hir, hir, hirs, hirself. Compare the similar "ze, hir..." set, which is apparently used in more literature and by more people. The "xe" version was "Used on alt.support.intergendered and alt.support.crossdressing," transgender communities on the Internet in the 1990s.[251]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke xe laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug hir.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow hirs.Reflexive: Each child feeds hirself.xe, xir, xir, xirs, xirself. This pronoun set saw some use on the Internet at least as early as 1998.[252]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke xe laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug xir.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, xir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow xirs.Reflexive: Each child feeds xirself.xe, xyr (xem), xyr, xyrs, xyrself (xemself). This pronoun set appears in 1993 in a conversation in an autism mailing list on the Internet.[253][254] The "xem" version of this pronoun set appears in a printed discussion from the mailing list of Autism Network International in 2000, with the explanation that it "was originally used to refer to an intersexed person, but is also used to refer to a person of any gender."[255] This pronoun set was recommended in 2005 by Jonathan de Boyne Pollard, with the version that includes "xem," and both "xyrself" and "xemself."[256]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke xe laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug xem. (Or hug xyr.)Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, xyr hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow xyrs.Reflexive: Each child feeds xyrself. (Or feeds xemself.)On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/xe
Xiexie, ?, hir, hirs, ?. Sarka-Jonae Miller made a Change.org petition asking for Dictionary.com to include these as gender-neutral pronouns, saying these are "widely used by LGBT community members and others who wish to refer to individuals as a person instead of as a gender." The petition didn't give all the forms of these pronouns.[257] Presumably these are a spelling variant of "xe, hir" or "ze, hir" pronouns.
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke xie laughs.Accusative: ?Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow xirs.Reflexive: ?Yoyo, (N/A), (N/A), (N/A), (N/A) In addition to an interjection and greeting, "yo" is a gender-neutral pronoun in a dialect of African-American Vernacular English spoken by middle school students in Baltimore, Maryland, the student body of which is 97% African-American. These students had spontaneously created the pronoun as early as 2004, and commonly used it. A study by Stotko and Troyer in 2007 examined this pronoun. The speakers used "yo" only for same-age peers, not adults or authorities. They thought of it as a slang word that was informal, but they also thought if it as just as acceptable as "he" or "she". "Yo" was used for people whose gender was unknown, as well as for specific people whose gender was known, often while using a pointing gesture at the person in question. The researchers collected examples of the word in use, such as "yo threw a thumbtack at me," "you acting like I said what yo said," and "she ain't really go with yo." The researchers only collected examples of "yo" used in the nominative form. That is, they found no possessive forms such as "yo's," and no reflexive forms such as "yoself." As such, "yo" pronouns might be used only in nominative form, similar to another native English gender-neutral pronoun, "a." Either that, or these forms exist, and the researchers just didn't collect them.[258][259]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke yo laughs.Accusative: (N/A?)Pronominal possessive: (N/A?)Predicative possessive: (N/A?)Reflexive: (N/A?)Zhezhe, zhim, zher, zhers, ?. (Compare similar pronoun sets such as xe, ze, and zie.) Created by Fred Foldvary in 2003 as a gender-neutral or inclusive pronoun. In this case, the Z is pronounced as in "azure."[260] In 2014, Deborah Rogers mentioned having a student who asked to be called by these pronouns.[261]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke zhe laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug zhim.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, zher hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow zhers.Reflexive: ?ZeThere are several similar sets of neologistic gender-neutral pronouns that use "xe," "ze," "zhe," or "zie" in nominative form. Regardless of spelling, their nominative form is pronounced "zee," and was based on the pronoun sie. The earliest documented version was created in 1972.[262] In alphabetical order, versions of this pronoun set include:
ze, em, zeir, zeirs, zeirself. Singer songwriter Jennifer Moore (memevector) invented these "memevector pronouns" in 2002. They are meant to sound similar to how other pronouns are pronounced in casual conversation. They are meant to be gender-free pronouns.[263][264]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ze laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug em.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, zeir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow zeirs.Reflexive: Each child feeds zeirself.ze, hir, hir, hirs, hirself. Compare the similar "xe, hir..." set, which is the version less attested by print sources. Sarah Dopp wrote a blog post about the "ze" version in 2006.[265] Leslie Feinberg also used the "ze" version in the book Drag King Dreams (2006),[266] Erika Lopez used the "ze" version in The Girl Must Die: A Monster Girl Memoir (2010).[267] M. J. Locke used the "ze" version in the book Up Against It (2011).[268]
Use in real life and non-fiction:Kate Bornstein used them in the books Nearly Roadkill (1996) (with Caitlin Sullivan June)[269], and My Gender Workbook (1998) in reference to hirself, and to other specific transgender people, as well as hypothetical persons of unspecified gender.[270]
Use in fiction:
Kameron Hurley used these pronouns in the fantasy novels The Mirror Empire and Empire Ascendant, for characters who are ataisa, an in-between gender role where their culture puts everyone who has a nonbinary gender.[271]In Seth Dickinson's short science fiction story, "Sekhmet Hunts the Dying Gnosis: A Computation" (2014), a transhuman character of "uncertain ... sex" is called by the pronoun "ze," which only appears in the nominative form.[272]In K. A. Cook's short story "Blue Paint, Chocolate and Other Similes," in Crooked Words, when the narrator Ben recognizes that Chris identifies as nonbinary, Ben begins using "ze, hir" pronouns for Chris, before finding a good moment to ask for Chris's actual pronoun preference.[273] In another story by K. A. Cook, "The Differently Animated and Queer Society," the character Pat goes by "ze, hir" pronouns, and uses them for other characters before finding out each of their own pronoun preferences.[274]The Len'en Wiki, an English wiki about a Japanese video game series, uses these pronouns as standard because nearly all the characters in the game series do not have a known gender.Use for real non-binary people:Kate Bornstein goes by these "ze, hir" pronouns. Leslie Feinberg asked to be called by "ze, hir" pronouns, along with "zie, hir" and "she."[275] In a magazine interview from 2014, Gabriel Antonio and another anonymous person both asked to be called by these pronouns.[276]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke xe laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug hir.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, hir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow hirs.Reflexive: Each child feeds hirself.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/ze
ze, mer, mzer, zers, zemself. Created earlier than 1997. Proposed by Richard E. Creel, a professor teaching philosophy of religion courses, to refer a person of any gender, and specifically to God. This was meant to help scholars think of God as neither male nor female. Creel said the M in "mer" comes from that in "him."[277].
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ze laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug mer.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, mzer hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow zers.Reflexive: Each child feeds zemself.ze, zim, zees, zees, zeeself. Created in 1972 by Steven Polgar of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, explaining that it is based on the German pronoun sie. This was printed in the Newsletter of the American Anthropological Association.[278][279]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ze laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug zim.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, zees hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow zees.Reflexive: Each child feeds zeeself.Ziezie, zir (zim), zir, zirs, zirself. (Compare the most similar pronoun set, "ze, zir", and other similar pronouns, "xe" and "zhe".) The Gender Neutral Pronoun FAQ says this set (with the "zie" spelling, and accusative "zir") was widely used on the Internet at the time, but doesn't know when it was created.[280] Andr(C)s P(C)rez-Bergquist recommended this set (with the "zie" spelling, and accusative "zim") in 2000, but claims not to have created it.[281]This set (with the "zie" spelling, and accusative "zir") is in the fantasy setting of Bard Bloom's World Tree, for the many characters with sexes other than female or male. Many species in this setting have such sexes, including the protagonist of a book in that setting, Sythyry's Journal, which was first serialized as a blog starting in 2002. The setting also has a role-playing game handbook, World Tree: A role playing game of species and civilization (2001).
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke zie laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug zir. (Or hug zim.)Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, zir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow zirs.Reflexive: Each child feeds zirself.On Pronoun Island:http://pronoun.is/zie
že¾e, ¾im, ¾ir, ¾irs, ?. A non-standard set of gender-neutral pronouns created by John Newmeyer, Ph.D, of San Francisco, and printed in The People's Almanac #2 (1978). Newmeyer also created a proper noun for a person whose gender isn't specified, as a counterpart to the nouns "man" and "woman:" ¾ane, or "thane."[282] These use the Old English letter ¾, called "thorn," which represents an unvoiced "th" sound, as in the English word "thin." "Thane" is derived from an English word for a specific kind of land-owner, who historically would have been only male.
In fiction: In Melissa Scott's science fiction novel Shadow Man (1995), this is one of the pronouns used for a specific intersex sex/gender.[283]
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke ¾e laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug ¾im.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, ¾ir hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow ¾irs.Reflexive: ?È'e3e, 3im, 3er, 3ers, 3imself. In Melissa Scott's science fiction novel Shadow Man (1995), intersex conditions have become so common that society categorizes people into five sexes (and five corresponding genders), each with their own set of pronouns.[284] Scott says the novel's concept is inspired by feminist Anne Fausto-Sterling's plea for recognition of the existence of intersexuality, "The Five Sexes: Why Male and Female Are Not Enough" (1993).[285] In Scott's novel, the people use 3e pronouns for those of the "herm" gender. Although the first consonant looks similar to a 3, and may be printed as such, it is a letter from Middle English called "yogh," and Scott meant it to be pronounced like a Z.[286] Compare similar "ze, zim" pronouns.
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke 3e laughs.Accusative: When I greet a friend I hug 3im.Pronominal possessive: When someone does not get a haircut, 3er hair grows long.Predicative possessive: If I need a phone, my friend lets me borrow 3ers.Reflexive: Each child feeds 3imself.e°e, ?, ?, ?, ?. In Melissa Scott's science fiction novel Shadow Man (1995), this is one of the pronouns used for a specific intersex sex which, in that culture, has its own corresponding gender.[287][288] This pronoun uses an Old English letter named "eth," pronounced like the "th." Compare similar ¾e pronouns.
Forms:
Nominative: When I tell someone a joke °e laughs.Accusative: ?Pronominal possessive: ?Predicative possessive: ?Reflexive: ?Esperanto neutral pronounsNormally, Esperanto doesn't have any neutral pronouns for people, only female or male. Some proposed grammatical reforms suggest adding a neutral pronoun. The problem with reforms is that the mean that, since you're not speaking dictionary Esperanto, many speakers won't understand you. Esperanto is supposed to be so uniform that everyone speaks it the same and can understand it. For more information about this issue, see Wikipedia's article gender reform in Esperanto.
Some proposed gender-neutral pronouns in non-standard Esperanto include:
gi. "A popular proposal because it is iconic: in writing, it resembles Ä'i, which it also resembles in meaning, and it is similar to the occasionally epicene prefix ge-. This makes it readily recognizable. Also along these lines is the use of the epicene prefix itself, geli."[289]
hi. Proposed "so that the gendered pronouns hi and Å'i both derive from English."[290]
li. A common proposed neutral pronoun that is "related to the epicene plural ili 'they'".[291]
ri. "Riist Esperanto," or "Riisim," is a grammatical reform to Esperanto that makes the language more gender-neutral in several ways. One of these changes is to replace the gendered pronouns entirely with the neutral pronoun ri. This was popular for some time for the Esperanto community on the Internet in the 1990s.[292]
Å'li (sxli). "Instantly recognizable to most Esperantists ... This is just the reading pronunciation of the abbreviation Å'/li, the equivalent of English "s/he", and is not infrequently seen in informal writing."[293]
Estonian neutral pronounsSome neutral pronouns in Estonian language (eesti keel) include:
tema, teda, tema. Formal.[294]
ta, teda, tema.[295]
Finnish neutral pronounsThe Finnish language (suomen kieli) doesn't have grammatical gender. There are no pronouns that specifically mean "she" or "he". Everyone is called by the genderless pronoun h¤n.
h¤n, h¤nen. Formal.[296]
se, sen. Means "it." Informal.[297]
German neutral pronounsPeople have proposed these neutral pronouns for in the German language (Deutsch):
er*.[298]
er_sie.[299]
es. This means "it," and isn't usually used for people. Only use this pronoun for people who ask to be called by it. Some nonbinary people do reclaim it for themselves.[300][301]
man. This is like "one" in English.[302]
sie. Usually, when this pronoun is used for a person, it means "she." However, it can also mean "they," so some people use it as a neutral pronoun, like "they" in English.[303]
sie*.[304]
sie_er.[305]
sie_r.[306]
sier.[307]
si*er.[308]
si:er.[309]
si_er.[310][311]
sif.[312]
x.[313]
xier, xieser, dier. For a person of any gender. Xier, instead of he or it, pronounced [ksi:ɐ̯]; xieser, a possessive pronoun instead of ihr and sein; and dier, an article and relative pronoun, instead of die and der, pronounced [ksi:zɐ], and [di:ɐ̯]. [314][315]
xier, xies, xiem, xien.[316]
Portuguese neutral pronounsSee also: gender neutral language - Portuguese and glossary of Portuguese gender and sex terminology.
The Portuguese language (portuguªs) doesn't normally have neutral pronouns. However, people have created some new, neutral pronouns, which are used in some groups. These include:
el..., del.... This uses an ... (ae) to show ambiguity of the letter.[317]
el@, del@. This uses an @ (at symbol) to show ambiguity of the letter.[318]
elx, delx. This uses an x to show ambiguity of the letter. This only works in writing. It can't be said out loud.[319]
Spanish neutral pronounsSee also: gender neutral language - Spanish and glossary of Spanish gender and sex terminology.
The Spanish language (espa±ol) doesn't normally have neutral pronouns. However, people have created some new, neutral pronouns, which are used in some groups that are sensitive about LGBT, feminist, and social justice issues. Most of these neutral pronouns work by taking the feminine pronoun, ella, and the standard abstract neuter pronoun ello (which can't be used for people), and substituting a different letter or symbol for the masculine "o" or feminine "a" ending. This approach of substituting a letter is shared by creating other parts of gender neutral language in Spanish, such as neutral-gender endings for adjectives. See gender neutral language - Spanish for information about that. These new, neutral pronouns include:
ell_. A neutral pronoun that can't be said out loud. This is less common. The _ (underscore) means that the "a" or "o" is left out.[320]
ell*. A neutral pronoun that can't be said out loud. This is less common. The * (asterisk) means that the "a" or "o" is left out. Compare the splat *e pronouns in English, which work by the same idea.[321]
ell.... A neutral pronoun. This is less common.[322]
ell@. A neutral pronoun that can't be said out loud, or else is pronounced like "ellao". This is non-standard, but one of the most common of these. The @ (at symbol) is meant to be seen as a mix between an "a" and an "o".[323]
elle. A neutral pronoun that can be easily said out loud. This is non-standard, but one of the most common of these.[324]
elli. A neutral pronoun that can be said out loud. It's uncommonly used.[325]
ellu. A neutral pronoun that can be said out loud. It's uncommonly used.[326]
ellx. A neutral pronoun that can't be said out loud. This non-standard, but one of the more common of these. Note that, unlike English coinages such as "princex," which is only for people of color, a neutral x in Spanish is not only for people of color. "Ellx" can be used by white people as well.[327]
Swedish neutral pronounsIn 2014, the Swedish language (Svenska) officially added a new gender-neutral pronoun, hen, which is popular among Swedish-speaking nonbinary people.
de, dem (dom), deras.[328]
den, den, dens (dess). Means 'it'. This isn't usually used for humans.[329]
hen, hen (henom), hens (henoms). This neutral pronoun was first proposed in 1966, and then independently in 1994, based on the Finnish neutral pronoun h¤n. It came to be used in magazines and books during the 2000s and 2010s. In 2014, it was officially added to the language. Hen is used for people whose gender is not known, as well as for nonbinary people who ask to be called by this pronoun. It's not meant to replace the gendered pronouns hon ("she") and han ("he"), but to exist together with them. For more information, see the Wikipedia entry on hen.
Use for non-binary peopleAlthough many gender-neutral pronouns were created to speak of no specific person, some non-binary people adopt these pronouns for themselves. They ask that other people call them only by one particular set of gender-neutral pronouns. This can be a part of a non-binary person's social transition.
Examples of specific non-binary people's pronounsSome non-binary people ask to be called by gender-neutral pronouns. Other non-binary people ask to be called by "he" or "she" pronouns, some of whom see that as a gender-neutral use of those words. The use of binary pronouns doesn't necessarily mean that someone has a binary gender identity. Some non-binary people have more than one set of pronouns that they are okay with people using for them.
He. Some specific non-binary people who ask to be called by "he" pronouns include comedian Eddie Izzard, writer Richard O'Brien, songwriter Antony Hegarty, and guitarist Pete Townshend.
She. Non-binary gender people who ask people to use "she" pronouns for them include actor Rain Dove, singer-songwriter Ellie Jackson, musician JD Samson, singer Kieran Strange, and actor Tilda Swinton.
They. Some nonbinary people ask to be called by "singular they" pronouns, including writer Ivan E. Coyote, actor Tom Phelan, actor Jiz Lee, singer-songwriter Rae Spoon, and rapper Raeen Roes.
Other pronouns. Nonbinary people who go by other pronouns include singer Mx Justin Vivian Bond, who goes by v pronouns. "Ze, hir" pronouns are the preferred pronouns of activist Kate Bornstein and revolutionary communist Leslie Feinberg (who also went by she)[330].
SurveysThere have been a few surveys on gender-neutral pronouns and pronoun preferences.
How to change your pronounsIf you are nonbinary and want to change your pronouns, this is a purely social part of your transition, rather than one using paperwork. First, you need to put a lot of thought into choosing pronouns that feel satisfactory to you. Research and experiment to find out what feels right. Next, you need to tell other people. As a part of social transition, you need cooperation from other people in order to be called by the pronouns you want, so it's important to keep your composure as well as stay firm. You can help remind people of your pronouns by wearing them on a badge or writing them in your Twitter profile.
Choosing your pronounsFirst, form your opinions on what you want from your new pronouns. Next, list your favorite pronouns, and compare them to your opinions so that you can list their pros and cons. Meanwhile, test your favorite pronouns out loud and in writing, to see how they feel to you in action.
Form opinions
The first step of choosing your pronouns is to form your criteria for what you want from your pronouns. Some traits are mutually exclusive, so you need to weigh your own opinions about what you think makes a good or personally suitable pronoun. Here is a sample list of criteria you could consider. Copy this list into another document, and write numbers next to the criteria to rank them by their priority to you. Think about what traits matter to you, even if they are not on this list.
You want to be basically the only person with these pronounsYou want to have these pronouns in common with many real peoplePronounceable, easy to say out loudEasy to spellNo rare lettersFits into a sentence seamlesslyAccessible, easy for people to use who have trouble with EnglishOld, created a long time agoNewCommonly usedRareUnique and creativeSounds like a mix of "she" and "he" pronounsDoesn't sound at all like "she" or "he", to get more distance from the gender binarySounds like a standard English pronoun, but with a twistPart of native EnglishSymbolic, describes you or your genderSounds like your nameSounds like the word for your genderSounds cool, tough, pretty, whimsical, serious, or something else like thatAssociated with your interests, community, or culturePart of a dialectCulturally neutralYour friends and family like themEasy to persuade other people that it's okay to use these pronouns for youSatisfactory to people who are strict about grammarSlangy, fits well into informal speechFits well into formal writingThe above list is only an example. If you like, you can use it as inspiration to create your own list from scratch.
Compare them
Next, after you decide what criteria you want for your pronouns, browse the alphabetical list of all pronouns above. Write down a list of the ones you like. Put them in a table, with columns for what you see as the good and bad traits of those pronouns. After you finish assessing them all, write down your concluding opinion about each in the last column. Here is a small example of such a table.
PronounProsConsConclusionve, verselfUsed in a book I likeDoesn't sound right to meMaybe noE, EmselfCommon, easy to sayToo short?Maybe yesYou can use the above table as your template. Create your own table in a word processor, or draw it by hand in your journal. Although the above table only compares two sets of pronouns, you can add rows for as many pronouns that interest you. You don't need to form your conclusions on all pronouns in one sitting. Perhaps over the course of a few days, take your time to form your opinions on each pronoun set, and return periodically to add more notes to your pronoun table.
Test them
At the same time as you work on the above table of pros and cons, test the pronouns that you might like. Try them in several ways: in writing, out loud, and in reference to you. If you have friends who understand, test out having them call you by these pronouns for a little while. You can help your friends with this by wearing a pronoun badge (see below). You can also test how your pronouns look in writing by using web-sites that put them into a text. Such sites include Failedslacker's Pronoun Dressing Room and PracticeWithPronouns.com. You may find that you feel differently about the pronouns when they are in action, and when they are in reference to you.
Announcing your change of pronounsWhen you have settled on your favorite set of pronouns, you need to tell people, so they can start using them for you. Announce it to them by a handwritten letter, e-mail, or blog post. Keep your message polite, and say "please" and "thank you." In order to be complete, and to address the first questions the reader might ask, your announcement should include these parts:
Opening: Assuming that you have already come out to these people as nonbinary, your announcement message should open with a reminder of that, as part of the explanation for why you want to change your pronouns.List all the grammatical forms of your new pronouns.Show people how to use these pronouns by giving an example of them in use in a sentence or several.You might tell how to pronounce the pronouns.Briefly say why you chose these pronouns rather than others.If you use two sets of pronouns, explain which set is more appropriate, under what conditions.Conclusion: Request that people use these pronouns for you.Based on the above, here is a sample letter of a fictional person announcing their pronoun change. You can use it as a template for writing your own.
Dear Stuart,
As you know, I have a nonbinary gender identity, meaning that I don't think of myself as a woman or a man. I'm transitioning to a gender expression that feels more like the real me. Since being called "he" or "she" doesn't feel right to me, I have decided to change my pronouns to singular they (they, them, their, theirs, themself). For an example of these pronouns in a couple sentences: "They are Morgan, that's them. They will read their book by themself". I like these singular gender-neutral pronouns the best because they were used by Shakespeare, Jane Austen, and other great writers. They have been a part of English for a long time. From now on, please call me by "they" pronouns, instead of "he" or "she".
Thank you,
Mx Morgan Doe
You can also use the above sample letter as a template for writing an e-mail, just by leaving out the signature. Use it as a template for a blog post by leaving out the salutation.
Pronoun badgesTo help other people remember which pronouns you want to be called by, you can wear a badge, jewelry, accessory, or piece of clothing with your pronouns written on it. You can use craft materials to create your own badge, or you can buy one from craft workers. Some examples of these makers, and the different kinds of pronoun badges that they make:
Rosemary Rain Studios hand-makes banner-shaped pins with custom pronouns on them.Non-Newtonian Gender Fluid makes adhesive labels and pin-back badges that look like common "Hello My Name Is" stickers, but below your name, you have your pronouns. This can suit you if you want to remind people of your new name as well as your new pronouns. If you use a wet erase pen on the pin-back badges, you can change your name and pronouns as often as you need.Spacerobot Studio makes necklaces that have charms that you can flip over to show your current pronoun. This can suit you if you change your pronouns very often, because of being genderfluid, or just experimenting with what pronouns you like best.Synsyne makes pin-back badges that say "Today my pronouns are..." with a blank space to write on with a wet erase marker. This is also suitable for folks who often change their pronouns.The Paper Poppy Store makes metal pendants and keychains hand-stamped with your pronouns. These can suit you if you also wear dog tags or want a rugged look.Patches N Cream and emBOIdery hand-embroider pronoun patches of the kind that you can put on a punk jacket.Hat's More Like It, CoziesByElliot, and CometBirthmark make hand-knit hats with big pronouns on them.The above list gives only a few examples of those who sell pronouns you can wear. If you search for "pronouns" on Etsy.com or Storenvy.com, you will likely find your pronouns on things by many more makers. You can find many who make printed pin-back badges, as well as punk-style hand-embroidered patches. Take some time to browse and find a badge that really says you. For an easy comparison, see a collection of many sellers that make pronoun accessories and clothing on the Wear Your Pronouns pinboard. To keep it short and not overwhelming, the pinboard shows only one or two pictures for each seller.
Virtual badgesYou can also wear a virtual badge by writing your pronouns in your profiles on the Internet. Although this may have started with nonbinary folks, it is becoming common practice for transgender and cisgender people alike to put their pronouns in their Internet profiles. Here is a made-up example of a Twitter profile that gives pronouns:
Mx Morgan Doe
Liberal Arts major, author. 23. Nonbinary. Pronouns: they, them, their, theirs, themself.
You can use the above example as a template for writing your own. If space is too limited to list all the forms of your pronoun, you can instead write only the nominative form of your pronoun ("Pronoun: they") or only the reflexive form ("Pronoun: themself"). The above example is also just right for the sidebar profile in sites such as Tumblr.com. On social networking web-sites that let you write longer profiles, you can tell more about your pronouns. For an example of how to write about them, use some traits from the template letter that is higher on this page. Limit your talk about your pronouns to a paragraph or two, at most.
In order to make it easier for people to put their pronouns in profiles with limited space, @morganastra and @thelseraphim created a web-site called Pronoun Island. Anyone can use it to create a link to a page that lists their pronouns and how to use them. For some pronouns that are built into the project, the web address is very short, so it's ideal for Twitter. People can also ask on Github for more pronouns to be added in the short form.
Pronoun etiquetteMany binary and nonbinarytransgender folk experience gender dysphoria when people refer to them using the wrong pronouns. For those who don't pass as well as they'd like, being called by the wrong gender (misgendered) with the wrong pronouns is a common problem with a lot of work involved. An individual, upon being misgendered, is forced to either do the coming out spiel or grin and bear it, making the coming out later more awkward. If someone corrects you on their pronouns, the best way you can help is to start using their preferred pronouns right away without argument.
If your pronouns are unusual, or aren't what people think of as matching your gender expression, you may have to get used to reminding people to use them, and explaining them to people a lot. Learn people's common questions and objections to your pronouns, and rehearse your responses to them, so that you can keep your composure.
A person can have more than one set of pronouns that they want people to use for them. For example, suppose that your favorite set of pronouns might be "ze, hir." However, you don't want these to make an accessibility problem for people who have trouble with English, or maybe there are some situations where you don't feel safe using them, or don't feel up to the challenge of getting people to use them. In that case, you have decided to let people also call you by a second set of pronouns (auxiliary pronouns) that you like almost but not quite as much: "she, her." For another example, some genderfluid people feel comfortable or uncomfortable with certain pronouns depending on their current feelings about their gender identity. As a result, they feel the need to alternate pronouns, and ask to be called by different pronouns at different times.
Unusual pronouns can make trouble for people who speak English as a second language, or who have disabilities that make it harder for them to speak and understand English. Unusual pronouns are difficult to understand for people who lipread.[331] If you and another person have difficulty using unusual pronouns for people for these reasons, then it is acceptable and appropriate to ask a person if they have another set of pronouns that you can use in that case.[332]
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NPR: Code Switch. [13]'†‘Elizabeth J. Elrod, "Give us a gender neutral pronoun, yo!: The need for and creation of a gender neutral, singular, third person, personal pronoun." Undergraduate Honors Theses paper 200. 2014. http://dc.etsu.edu/honors/200 or http://dc.etsu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1203&context=honors (PDF)'†‘Fred Foldvary, "Gender-neutral pronouns for English." March 13, 2003. The Progress Report: Tracking the spread of a transformative idea: geonomics.http://www.progress.org/tpr/gender-neutral-pronouns-for-english-2/'†‘Deborah Rogers, "'They' has arrived at the pronoun party." December 4, 2014. Times Higher Education.http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/comment/opinion/they-has-arrived-at-the-pronoun-party/2017278.article#.VIHr5bJE0lk.facebook'†‘Dennis Baron, "The Epicene Pronouns: A chronology of the word that failed." http://www.english.illinois.edu/-people-/faculty/debaron/essays/epicene.htm'†‘"Pronouns." Footnotes. 2003. Retrieved 2007. http://web.archive.org/web/20090414130833/http://footnotes.jinkies.org.uk/pronouns.html'†‘Jennifer Moore (memevector), "Pronouns." February 20, 2002. Livejournal. Blog post. http://memevector.livejournal.com/1089.html'†‘Sarah Dopp, "How transgender folk are fixing an age-old literary problem." August 13, 2006. http://www.sarahdopp.com/blog/2006/how_transgender_folk_are_fixing_an_age_o/'†‘Leslie Feinberg, Drag King Dreams. New York: Carroll & Graf, 2006.'†‘Erika Lopez, The Girl Must Die: A Monster Girl Memoir. Hicken, Jeffrey, San Francisco: Monster Girl Media, 2010.'†‘M. J. Locke, up Against It. New York: Tor, 2011.'†‘Caitlin Sullivan June and Kate Bornstein. Nearly Roadkill: An Infobahn erotic adventure. New York: Serpent's Tail, 1996, p. 10.'†‘Kate Bornstein, My Gender Workbook. 1st ed. 1998, p. 106-107, 119, 130-131, 154, 248.'†‘Kameron Hurley, "Beyond He-Man and She-Ra: Writing nonbinary characters." https://intellectusspeculativus.wordpress.com/2014/09/03/guest-post-beyond-he-man-she-ra-writing-non-binary-characters-by-kameron-hurley/'†‘Seth Dickinson, "Sekhmet Hunts the Dying Gnosis: A Computation." Beneath Ceaseless Skies, issue 143. March 20, 2014. http://www.beneath-ceaseless-skies.com/stories/sekhmet-hunts-the-dying-gnosis-a-computation/'†‘K. A. Cook, "Blue Paint, Chocolate and Other Similes." Crooked Words. Unpaged.'†‘K. A. Cook, "The Differently Animated and Queer Society." Crooked Words. Unpaged.'†‘Minnie Bruce Pratt, "Transgender Pioneer and Stone Butch Blues Author Leslie Feinberg Has Died." Advocate. November 17, 2014. http://www.advocate.com/arts-entertainment/books/2014/11/17/transgender-pioneer-leslie-feinberg-stone-butch-blues-has-died'†‘Al Donato, "He And She, Ze And Xe: The Case For Gender-Neutral Pronouns." The Plaid Zebra.http://www.theplaidzebra.com/ze-xe-case-gender-neutral-pronouns/'†‘In Richard E. Creel, ''Ze, zer, mer,'' APA Newsletters 97: 1 (Fall 1997)'†‘https://web.archive.org/web/20120229202924/http:/aetherlumina.com/gnp/listing.html]'†‘Dennis Baron, "The Epicene Pronouns: A chronology of the word that failed." http://www.english.illinois.edu/-people-/faculty/debaron/essays/epicene.htm'†‘"GNP FAQ." [14]'†‘Andr(C)s P(C)rez-Bergquist, "Gender-neutral pronouns: The value of zie." 2000. http://santiago.mapache.org/nonfiction/essays/zie.html'†‘Dennis Baron, "The Epicene Pronouns: A chronology of the word that failed." http://www.english.illinois.edu/-people-/faculty/debaron/essays/epicene.htm'†‘Veronica Hollinger and Joan Gordon, eds. Edging Into The Future: Science Fiction and Contemporary Cultural Transformation. p. 110.'†‘Alex Dally MacFarlane, "Post-binary gender in SF: Shadow Man by Melissa Scott." April 8, 2014. Tor.http://www.tor.com/blogs/2014/04/post-binary-gender-in-sf-shadow-man-by-melissa-scott'†‘Veronica Hollinger and Joan Gordon, eds. Edging Into The Future: Science Fiction and Contemporary Cultural Transformation. p. 109.'†‘Patricia Melzer, Alien Constructions: Science Fiction and Feminist Thought. University of Texas, 2010. Unpaged.'†‘Veronica Hollinger and Joan Gordon, eds. Edging Into The Future: Science Fiction and Contemporary Cultural Transformation. p. 110.'†‘Alex Dally MacFarlane, "Post-Binary Gender in SF: ExcitoTech and Non-Binary Pronouns." June 3, 2014. Tor.http://www.tor.com/blogs/2014/06/post-binary-gender-in-sf-excitotech-and-non-binary-pronouns'†‘gender reform in Esperanto'†‘gender reform in Esperanto'†‘gender reform in Esperanto'†‘gender reform in Esperanto'†‘gender reform in Esperanto'†‘rabbitglitter, "Multilingual pronouns list." Nonbinary Resource (blog). http://nonbinaryresource.tumblr.com/post/102614223062/multilingual-pronouns-list'†‘rabbitglitter, "Multilingual pronouns list." Nonbinary Resource (blog). http://nonbinaryresource.tumblr.com/post/102614223062/multilingual-pronouns-list'†‘rabbitglitter, "Multilingual pronouns list." Nonbinary Resource (blog). http://nonbinaryresource.tumblr.com/post/102614223062/multilingual-pronouns-list'†‘rabbitglitter, "Multilingual pronouns list." Nonbinary Resource (blog). http://nonbinaryresource.tumblr.com/post/102614223062/multilingual-pronouns-list'†‘rabbitglitter, "Multilingual pronouns list." 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Passagiers uren vast in trein om migranten - Buitenland - Reformatorisch Dagblad
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 13:49
Honderden passagiers hebben in de nacht van dinsdag op woensdag uren vastgezeten in Eurostar-treinen nadat was gemeld dat migranten in Calais op het spoor bij de Kanaaltunnel liepen. Ze zouden hebben geprobeerd aan boord van de treinen te klimmen of op de daken ervan te springen.
In totaal zes treinen strandden. Slechts twee treinen konden na lang oponthoud in Calais terugkeren, een was op weg naar Parijs, de ander naar Londen. De passagiers van de vier andere treinen waren nog minder fortuinlijk en moesten de nacht in de koude wagons doorbrengen. Eurostar deelde dekens van folie uit.
In de treinen werden de reizigers opgeroepen stil te zijn en te luisteren of ze mensen op het dak van de trein hoorden klimmen. De passagiers klaagden woensdagochtend dat ze door de vervoerder in de steek waren gelaten en gedurende de nacht geen enkele actuele informatie over de situatie hadden gekregen.
Frankrijk is de oponthouden van de treinen zat. Minister Bernard Cazeneuve van Binnenlandse Zaken zei woensdag dat iedereen die wordt opgepakt die het spoorgebied binnendringt, voor de rechter wordt gesleept. Hij streeft ernaar het aantal gevallen terug te dringen tot nul. Dit jaar zijn volgens de minister al negen mensen omgekomen die via de tunnel illegaal naar Engeland wilden reizen.
'žDure medicijnen stuwen zorgpremie'' - Binnenland - Reformatorisch Dagblad
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 13:47
De zorgpremie dreigt de komende tijd jaarlijks te stijgen door de almaar toenemende uitgaven aan dure geneesmiddelen. Een initiatiefgroep van ziekenhuisapothekers, artsen en zorgverzekeraars komt nu met een plan om daar iets aan te doen, meldt de NOS woensdag.
Tussen 2011 en eind 2013 zijn de uitgaven aan medicijnen ruim verdubbeld van 700 miljoen euro naar 1,5 miljard euro. De groep wil stimuleren dat waar mogelijk de dure middelen die alleen in (gespecialiseerde) ziekenhuizen mogen worden gegeven, worden vervangen door veel goedkopere kopien van die middelen.
Islamic State Terrorists Caught Crossing Into Europe Posing As Refugees
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 13:35
Bulgarian authorities near the Gyueshevo border checkpoint detained the five men, aged between 20 and 24, late on Wednesday, Bulgarian broadcaster NOVA TVreported.
The men were stopped by a border guard, who they attempted to bribe with a ''wad of dollars.'' However, they were searched and Islamic State propaganda, specific Jihadists prayers and decapitation videos were found on their phones.
In a move that suggests how seriously authorities are taking the case, the Bulgarian State Agency for National Security (DANS) has now taken control of the investigation under the supervision of the regional prosecutor's office in Kyustendil.
The men chose to cross in a wooded area, local media have reported, and took a car from an accomplice who had crossed legally from Macedonia with the vehicle.
Bulgaria has recently completed a 15-foot high razor wire clad fence along 50 miles of its south-eastern border with Turkey to control the mass movement of migrants from the Middle East and Asia into Europe via the so-called Balkans route.
However, the Gyueshevo border checkpoint where the men crossed sits on Bulgaria's western border with Macedonia. It is likely the men chose to enter there to avoid the new strict border controls on the other side of the country.
Following the recently foiled terror attack on an Amsterdam''Paris train, where the heavily armed terrorist was able to travel freely, European governments have been considering amending the Schengen border code, which eliminated systematic border controls across most of Europe.
In February, the Turkish intelligence service warned police in an internal memo that up to 3,000 trained jihadists are seeking to cross into Turkey from Syria and Iraq, who could then travel through Bulgaria and Hungry into western Europe. And in May, a Libyan government adviser warned Islamic State operatives were being ''smuggled to Europe in migrant boats.''
At the time of the comments, UKIP leader Nigel Farage warned: ''When ISIS say they want to flood our continent with half a million Islamic extremists they mean it, and there is nothing in this document [Common European Asylum Policy] that will stop them.
''I fear we face a direct threat to our civilisation if we allow large numbers of people from that war torn region into Europe.''
CNN Changes Debate Rules, Opening Door for Carly Fiorina to Participate | TheBlaze.com
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 13:08
CNN announced on Tuesday that it had amended the criteria for participants of its mid-September Republican presidential debate, opening the door for former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina to take the main stage.
Rebulican presidential candidate Carly Fiorina fields a question during a presidential forum hosted by FOX News and Facebook at the Quicken Loans Arena August 6, 2015 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
The cable-news network had been under heavy fire from the Fiorina campaign and supporters who argued that the rules excluding her from the debate were unfair. Fiorina, who received a boost in poll numbers following her performance at the Fox News debate, contended that CNN's original criteria relied on outdated polling data which didn't take into account the political landscape shaped by the first debate.
Following growing pressure, CNN made the decision to now include any candidate who ranks in the top 10 in polls from August 7 and September 10.
''In the event that any candidate is polling in the top 10 in an average of approved national polls released between August 7th and September 10th, we will add those candidates to our top tier debate, even if those candidates did not poll in the top 10 in an average of approved national polls between July 16th and September 10th,'' CNN said in a statement. ''We have discussed these changes with the Republican National Committee and the Reagan Library and they are fully supportive.''
Sara Flores, deputy campaign manager for Fiorina, tweeted out a short statement welcoming the change.
The change was also approved by the Republican National Committee.
''I applaud CNN for recognizing the historic nature of this debate and fully support the network's decision to amend their criteria,'' RNC Chairman Reince Priebus said.
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Gibraltar Chronicle - The Independent Daily First Published 1801
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 13:01
The UK, Spain and Gibraltar have agreed to ''step up'' law enforcement cooperation at sea, including exchanging evidence to ensure criminals can be effectively prosecuted.
The agreement is the result of a week of furious diplomatic contacts at the highest levels in the wake of last Saturday's incident at sea, in which Spanish customs officers fired warning shots while trying to board a local vessel in British waters.
The Gibraltar Government has been working closely with UK ministers and officials from the outset and cautiously accepts the development as a positive step.
Last Saturday's incident focused minds on the urgent need to defuse tensions at sea. It also highlighted the need to ensure that law enforcement agencies can cooperate effectively.
The British Government has secured an admission from Spain that shots were fired and that this will not happen again.
''We remain deeply concerned at the fact that live shots are now confirmed to have been fired during this incident and we have been reassured by the Spanish Government that safety of lives at sea is a top priority for all concerned and their law enforcement agencies will operate with the utmost respect for this principle in order that this is fully upheld in the future,'' a Foreign & Commonwealth Office spokesman said last night.
But while this is an important recognition of the seriousness of last weekend's events and the need to avoid a repetition, the most significant development relates to law enforcement cooperation.
''Without prejudice to our respective positions on questions of sovereignty and jurisdiction, it has been agreed to step up law enforcement cooperation in the fight against organised crime, including through timely co-operation and notification by the various seaborne agencies of pursuits of vessels involved in illegal activities to ensure effective action against criminals and a commitment to a mutual provision and exchange of evidence in order to better facilitate the successful prosecution of criminals in the relevant courts and tribunals,'' the Foreign Office statement said.
Spain's Ministry for Foreign Affairs issued a statement on similar lines, although it spoke of agreement to ''explore formulas'' to improve cooperation ''that could include'' timely cooperation and appropriate notification ''by the competent authorities'' of criminal activities.
The aim, according to the Spanish statement, would be to ''guarantee joint action'' in the fight against criminality, ''...as well as maintain a commitment to the mutual exchange of evidence in order to facilitate the effective prosecution [of those criminals] in the competent courts and tribunals.''
The developments were agreed late last night and were welcomed by the Gibraltar Government, which underscored the seriousness of the ''unacceptable'' incident last Saturday.
''Her Majesty's Government of Gibraltar cannot accept that there was any valid reason which could have justified the firing of live shots, which has now been officially confirmed, and which created a risk of danger to life. It should never have happened,'' No 6 Convent Place said in a statement.
''The express commitment by Spain to operate with safety of lives at sea as a priority should always be a 'sine qua non' of law enforcement at sea in the Bay of Gibraltar and elsewhere.''
''For that reason, recognition, even on a without prejudice basis, of the need to step up co-operation will be welcomed by all law abiding citizens in the UK, Spain and Gibraltar.''
''The additional statement reflecting the need for timely notifications of pursuits at sea is potentially also highly significant.''
''The further commitment to the mutual provision and exchange of evidence in order to better facilitate the successful prosecution of criminals in the relevant courts and tribunals is potentially also a step forward.''
The Gibraltar Government nonetheless cautioned that, while it welcomed the agreement, the important thing was how it would work in practice.
''We shall wait and see whether after these statements by the three governments anything changes operationally,'' it said.
''Gibraltar's excellent law enforcement agencies will as ever continue to work to ensure that organised criminals are thwarted whenever they may enter our jurisdiction, whether on land or at sea and stand ready as always to cooperate with the law enforcement agencies of all nations operating around BGTW.''
Zijn zelfrijdende auto's de droom van bommenleggers? - Computerworld
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 12:52
In case you missed it, here's the big news from Samsung's Developer Conference.
In case you missed it, here's the big news from Samsung's Developer Conference.
In case you missed it, here's the big news from Samsung's Developer Conference.
In case you missed it, here's the big news from Samsung's Developer Conference.
In case you missed it, here's the big news from Samsung's Developer Conference.
In case you missed it, here's the big news from Samsung's Developer Conference.
In case you missed it, here's the big news from Samsung's Developer Conference.
In case you missed it, here's the big news from Samsung's Developer Conference.
moon corner cube reflector - Google Search
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 21:59
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Russia Deploying Air Force Contingent to Syria | Washington Free Beacon
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 20:55
Russian MIG-29 plane performs a flight during a celebration marking the Russian air force's 100th anniversary in Zhukovsky, outside Moscow, Russia / AP
BY:Abraham RabinovichSeptember 1, 2015 12:31 pm
JERUSALEM'--Russia has begun to deploy an air force contingent to Syria in order to undertake air attacks against the Islamic State (IS, also known as ISIS or ISIL) and other Islamic groups battling the regime of President Bashar al-Assad, according to the Israeli news site, Ynet.
Citing western diplomatic sources, Ynet reported Tuesday that an advance Russian party has already arrived in Syria and will be followed in the coming weeks by thousands of military personnel, including members of an ''aerial protection division.'' This presumably is a force to protect the air contingent, which is to include fighter jets and attack helicopters, from ground attack. The Russians will reportedly be making use of an existing Syrian air force base in the Damascus area.
The report was written by the news site's military correspondent, Alex Fishman, who has a reputation for reliability.
The United States and allies began air strikes against IS a year ago. Last month American warplanes, which had been launching from aircraft carriers in the Persian Gulf and from Gulf states, began operating from an airbase in Turkey. Should the report of direct Russian intervention prove true, coordination between the Russians and Americans would be mandatory. Until now, wrote Fishman, there has been no reaction from Washington to the Russian move although the Obama administration is well aware of it.
''The Russians do not harbor offensive intentions towards Israel or other sovereign states in the area,'' he wrote. ''Their main stated goal is batting ISIS and preserving Assad's rule.'' Moscow fears the spread of the Islamic State's influence in the former Islamic Soviet Republics unless it is stopped in the Middle East. For Iran too, halting the group's advance is its most important immediate aim'--important enough to permit cooperation with the 'Big Satan'', Washington.
Although Israel has not undertaken direct strikes against the Assad regime aimed at unseating it, it has periodically launched air strikes against missiles and other advanced armaments being transshipped through Syria by Iran to Hezbollah in Lebanon. This, theoretically at least, raises the possibility of Russian and Israeli aircraft coming into contact unless an accommodation between them is reached beforehand. During the 1973 Yom Kippur War, a number of Soviet lives were lost during Israeli raids in Damascus and Syrian ports. The two countries did not have diplomatic relations at the time. There are at present sound diplomatic relations between them.
The Russian air effort will be focused on Islamic targets in Syria. It is not clear whether the aircraft will operate over Iraq. The reported visit to Moscow last month of Iranian General Qasem Soleimani, commander of the al-Quds force, which operates outside Iranian territory, is believed to have included talks about Russian air intervention in Syria.
Informal coordination is also underway between the United States and Iran over the battle against IS in Iraq. Washington regards Iran as a central player in the struggle against the radical Islamic group.
The Ynet report said the Russians will also operate against ''rebel-aligned targets'' within Syria. Although all nations active in Syria and Iraq oppose IS, many support rebel groups, including the United States and other Western and Arab states. This would be a potentially explosive issue if not headed off quickly.
While Iran and Russia are interested in preserving Assad in place, each for its own reasons, most nations attacking IS are opposed to the Damascus regime. It is seen as responsible for the Syrian civil war, which has led to more than 200,000 deaths and the uprooting of millions. Throughout this period, the Russians have sent a vessel to Syria every week carrying military supplies and Tehran has been airlifting military supplies to Damascus airport. Arab media reports that the Russians are planning to double their shipments. However, with the Syrian army losing key ground to rebel forces and losing personnel through desertion and in battle it is questionable if these efforts will succeed in propping up the regime.
Parents Who Hid Child's Gender for Five Years Now Face Backlash | TIME.com
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 20:54
A British couple raised their child as "gender neutral" to avoid stereotypes. Why are people so upset about it?
Taxi/ Getty ImagesWhen Beck Laxton and Kieran Cooper had their son, Sasha Laxton, five years ago, they decided that rather than make a big splashy ''It's A Boy!'' announcement, they'd keep the news to themselves. Instead, they only told a select number of relatives that little Sasha was a he; to everyone else the child was referred to as ''the infant'' and described without gendered pronouns.
''Stereotypes seem fundamentally stupid. Why would you want to slot people into boxes?'' Laxton told her local news outlet, Cambridge News. ''It affects what they wear and what they can play with, and that shapes the kind of person that they become.''
Sasha's unique upbringing went beyond language. His bedroom was painted yellow, he was encouraged to play with all types of toys, including dolls, and he wore whatever hand-me-downs fit him, whether they were his older stepbrother's or his older stepsister's. While around the house, Sasha was even known to dress up in a tutu and wings or a pink two-piece swimsuit. His mother said that she saw no problem with the whole thing, pointing out that, ''We don't make Sasha go out in girls' clothes. We are not forcing it.''
(LIST:The Best and Worst Moms of All Time)
In fact, the only reason that Sasha has even entered into the gender foray is that he has entered primary school and Beck felt it would be too difficult to continue to hide it. Yet now that Sasha's gender has been revealed '-- and his story has hit the British papers '-- everyone and their mother seems to have an opinion on it. Critics and Internet commenters (which are practically synonymous these days) have labeled his parents everything from abusive to crazy, with calls that little Sasha should be taken into child services.
The reaction seems quite extreme, considering Sasha himself has said that he thinks gender-based rules like ''pink is for girls and blue is for boys'' are silly. Laxton also noted that neither her son's gender-neutral upbringing nor the big reveal has perturbed the child much. ''I don't think I'd do it if I thought it was going to make him unhappy, but at the moment he's not really bothered either way. We haven't had any difficult scenarios yet.''
So what is it exactly that's setting people off?
While there's typically backlash whenever a sensational story calls typical methods of parenting into question (who could forget Tiger Mom Amy Chua?) that doesn't quite explain the vitriol being tossed Laxton's way. Melanie Phillips, a columnist at the right-wing Daily Mail, explains her issue with the situation, writing on Monday that if people go against gender norms, society could be ''brainwashed into pretending that the differences between male and female don't exist '-- in order to reconstruct society into some unattainable utopia of sexual and gender identicality.''
(LIST:Top 10 New Findings in Parenting of 2011)
But what Phillips and the majority of commenters angered by Laxton's move have failed to separate is the difference between gender and sex. Laxton has made no reference to preventing Sasha from knowing his sex, defined by his reproductive organs and which, of course, differ from that of a female. Laxton has simply made an effort, albeit an extreme one, to keep Sasha in the dark about his gender and the conventions associated with it. Why should a child who's born male be made to feel it's wrong to play with dolls but not G.I. Joes? What sort of biological factors wired into his brain deem one sort of action-figure appropriate, while ruling out a similar plastic figure?
While some critical commenters have expressed concern that such imprecise gender lines could leave Sasha confused about his sexuality in the future, their comments speak more of their own bias against LGBT people than anything else. Most, if not all, of people who've come to question their gender identity were raised among the very stereotypes Sasha's been shielded from.
It's certainly worth noting that if anything was to make Sasha feel ostracized or different, it certainly wouldn't be his mother's choices. It's much more likely to be the anger leveled at him for being raised differently.
LIST:Top 10 Ridiculously Obvious Study Findings of 2011
PHOTOS:A Diverse Group of American Teens
Ashley Madison Code Shows More Women, and More Bots
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 18:43
After searching through the Ashley Madison database and private email last week, I reported that there might be roughly 12,000 real women active on Ashley Madison. Now, after looking at the company's source code, it's clear that I arrived at that low number based in part on a misunderstanding of the evidence. Equally clear is new evidence that Ashley Madison created more than 70,000 female bots to send male users millions of fake messages, hoping to create the illusion of a vast playland of available women.
Today Ashley Madison released a statement saying that I couldn't have figured out how many active women are on the site based on the data dump. The company is right about that. It may still be true that a relatively small number of women are active on Ashley Madison, but the evidence that I thought supported my claims means something else entirely'--more on that below.
What I have learned from examining the site's the source code is that Ashley Madison's army of fembots appears to have been a sophisticated, deliberate, and lucrative fraud. The code tells the story of a company trying to weave the illusion that women on the site were plentiful and eager. Whatever the total number of real, active female Ashley Madison users is, the company was clearly on a desperate quest to design legions of fake women to interact with the men on the site.
The Missing Data and the BotsThe Ashley Madison source code comes from the second dump released by Impact Team'--at 20 gigabytes compressed, it was about twice the size of the first. Though partly corrupted, it did hold hundreds of readable company emails that revealed the company was paying people to create fake women's profiles and to chat with men on the site. It also contained multiple git repositories, or containers for source code, that appear to go back to mid-2010.
The first thing I learned when I looked at the code was that the database Impact Team released on August 18, and on which I based my reporting about the number of active female users, was just a tiny portion of the actual member data collected by Ashley Madison. The code makes references to 550 data tables, but there are only 4 tables in the data from Impact Team. That radically changes the picture of what we're actually seeing in the database.
When I first looked over the data, I wrongly assumed that I had all or most of the tables. As I wrote last week, I came across three columns in one of those tables called ''bc_email_last_time,'' ''bc_chat_last_time,'' and ''email_reply_last_time.'' After consulting with two analysts, and determining that these columns were the only ones with names typically used to track user activity, I concluded that the datestamps in those columns referred to the last time people checked their Ashley Madison messages, or tried to start a chat. And when I saw the radical disparity between numbers of men with a datestamp and the number of women, I interpreted it to mean that men were emailing a lot with bots, and women barely ever emailed anyone at all.
But I was wrong. It's a lot weirder than that. Those columns in the data don't record human activity at all. They record the last time a bot'--or ''engager'' in Ashley Madison's internal parlance'--emailed or chatted with a member of the site.
What that means is that we have absolutely no data recording human activity at all in the Ashley Madison database dump from Impact Team. All we can see is when fake humans contacted real ones. In other words, the dramatic discrepancy between men and women is entirely because Ashley Madison's software developers trained their bots to talk almost exclusively to men.
Two intrepid researchers came forward to tip me off to what those columns actually measured. Software developer Jake Perkowski and pseudonymous Gizmodo commenter Mr. Falcon had both pored over the code and realized that when bots called ''engagers'' talked to humans, they were programmed to make a note of it in the database under fields called ''bc_chat_last_time,'' ''reply_email_last_time,'' ''or bc_email_last_time.'' Once I'd checked the sections of code they pointed to, the evidence was undeniable. Those columns had been populated by bots, obediently checking in every time they talked to a human male.
Perkowski also pointed me to a column in the database called ishost. When ishost was set to 1, he said, it meant that the member was actually a bot. A quick search of the code revealed that indeed bots were using accounts with the value ishost=1. So I decided to delve more into what else these host accounts held.
Out of 70,572 hosts, 70,529 were female and only 43 were male. So we can say for sure that roughly zero percent of bots on Ashley Madison are male. The bots also tended to have ashleymadison.com email addresses, though other popular addresses included things like passthecake@hotmail.com, kimmakesprofiles@hotmail.com, and digital-romeo@hotmail.com. And finally, tens of thousands of the bots had IP addresses that suggested the accounts had been made by people working at the Ashley Madison office.
But where can we find human activity in the Impact Team dump? Apparently, nowhere. Looking at the code, there appear to be several database tables where the system keeps track of when humans chat or message with other humans. It also seems that Ashley Madison even keeps records of what each member says to the other in chat sessions. Had the Impact Team been more nosy, or had more time to dump the data, we might be looking at extremely detailed information on what humans said to each other as they flirted and planned their hookups.
So much for Ashley Madison's guarantee that they'll keep your affair hushed up. Right now, the company has reams of incredibly incriminating personal information about everything its human users are doing and saying.
But in the database dump from Impact Team, all we can see is the ample evidence that male users were contacted by bots pretty much constantly. Those data fields tell us that 20 million men out of 31 million received bot mail, and about 11 million of them were chatted up by an automated ''engager.'' And in the code, I discovered that for many members, these robo-encounters could come roughly every few minutes. At last, I was able to see how a group of engineers tried to create bots that would make men feel like they were in a world packed with eager, available women.
How to Snare Millions of Men with Web BotsIt's not easy to sort through thousands of lines of code, but two things can make it faster. One is a simple but powerful search program called grep that can search text for any phrase you like. The other is a habit that engineers have of writing comments about what they're doing in the code. Armed with grep, I could look for key phrases in both comments and the code itself.
I knew from the company emails that the engineers and managers used certain terms for the bots, including ''hosts'' and ''engagers.'' Perhaps one of the most poignant parts of reading the engineers' comments in the code was when I uncovered a set of descriptions for how the engager bots should act. I found these in a database devoted to engager activity. Here are a few of them:
host bot mother creates engagers
birth has been given! let the engager find itself a man!
randomizing start time so engagers don't all pop up at the same time
for every single state that has guest males, we want to have a chat engager
These comments describe a bot being born and immediately turning to its one purpose in life: finding a man. Then the developer notes that it's important that ''engagers don't pop up at the same time.'' The engager bots are basically pieces of software. They operate by inhabiting, as a demon might, previously existing fake profiles that the company calls ''Angels'''--these are the profiles that Ashley Madison CEO Noel Biderman was pushing his people to create at scale in internal company emails. The Angels, also called ''hosts'' by the company's engineers, lay dormant until a bot animates them and uses them like a skin to contact a male user. Which is why the engineers sought ways to prevent them from all grabbing the same identity at the same time. Basically, they look a lot less fake if there aren't a zillion bot clones running around chatting men up. And finally, we learn that one of the rules was that every state with non-paying ''guest'' males'--from Nunavut to California'--should have a chat engager.
Of course, things didn't always go as planned. In a patch, or edit, to the code, I saw this comment: ''Stopped engaging gaymen.'' That made me laugh. I imagined a frustrated developer, getting complaints from gay men who kept being assaulted by female chat bots looking for heterosexual love.
Based on what I've seen in the code, the chat bots were fairly annoying. First of all, they weren't exactly smart. Here's a verbatim list, taken directly from the code, of the random messages that the chat bot was programmed to spew'--probably the repeats are in there to make it more likely that the bot would say them:
'hi',
'hi',
'hi',
'hi (s)',
'hi there',
'how are you?',
'hey',
'Hey',
'hey there',
'hey there',
'Hey there',
'u busy?',
'you there?',
'any body home?',
'Hi',
'Hi',
'Hi',
'hows it going?',
'chat?',
'how r u?',
'anybody home? lol',
'hello',
'hello',
'Hello',
'hello?',
'whats up?',
'so what brings you here?',
'oh hello',
'free to chat??',
Once the man struck up a conversation, the bot would say things like this:
Hmmmm, when I was younger I used to sleep with my friend's boyfriends. I guess old habits die hard although I could never sleep with their husbands.
I'm sexy, discreet, and always up for kinky chat. Would also meet up in personif we get to know each other and think there might be a good connection. Does this sound intriguing?''
It's unclear what else the engager would say'--either the bots really are this simple, or further chat phrases weren't in the code. Most likely, based on what I saw from other bot code, the bot would urge the man to pay credits to talk further.
Mr. Falcon pointed out that there's actually a special bot service, called ''RunChatBotXmppGuarentee.service.php,'' apparently designed just for interactions with customers who paid the premium $250 for a ''guaranteed affair.'' When I checked the code, I found Mr. Falcon was right. It appears that this bot would chat up the man, urge him to pay credits, and then pass him along to what's called an ''affiliate.'' Likely the affiliate is a third party that provides a real person for the man to chat with. It might also be connecting him to an escort service.
Earlier this year, one Ashley Madison engineer spent a couple of days mocking up a possible system for paying actual human women for engaging the men. The code calculates a ''FemaleValue'' (percentage credited to the woman's account) based on ''MaleProfit'' (amount the man pays to Ashley Madison). If the woman engages the man within 20 to 30 minutes of the time he buys credits, she'll be credited with 5 percent of the profit. It doesn't appear that this system was deployed, but it was obviously something Ashley Madison developers were thinking about.
Map via Jake Perkowski
We know from company emails that management constantly struggled to find people to create fake accounts in languages other than English. Bots needed to speak 31 different languages, and they chatted and sent messages to people in roughly 50 countries and 1,500 states or provinces. In the map above, Perkowski has visualized ''the rate of engager accounts to total female accounts per country.'' The darker the blue, the more ubiquitous robots are in your Ashley Madison dating pool. No matter where you are in the world, Ashley Madison probably has a bot that can say ''anybody home? lol'' in your native language.
Perhaps because of the company's international focus, you can see ripples of geopolitical events in the code. I found evidence that a developer updated the system in May to change the handling of payments in Crimea. No doubt responding to the Russian invasion of that region, he changed the payment system language from Ukrainian to Russian. In another comment, a developer noted, ''south african engagers can only engage pnums [members] of same race.''
Ashley Madison aspired to be a global network of people breaking the bonds of monogamy in the name of YOLO. Instead, it was mostly a collection straight men talking to extremely busy bots who bombarded them with messages asking for money. I found a set of email templates called ''mistress'' which were sent out to urge men to spend money on Mistress Day, a pre-Valentines holiday on February 13. Ashley Madison CEO Noel Biderman did a huge publicity push for the holiday in 2014, doing interviews about it in the media and blasting out emails urging all members to buy more credits so they can find a mistress in time for the day.
Those email blasts were another way the bots hassled Ashley Madison's straight men. One engineer comments in the code that bot mail blasts for new members are sent to straight men on Monday, Wednesday and Friday; but they're only sent to men seeking men on Tuesdays, and women seeking women on Thursday.
The engagers are so annoying that developers had to write special exceptions to exclude their own bots from being nuked in spam sweeps. They also exclude several IP addresses in India and the Philippines, which suggests that they may have had a lot of people operating their host accounts in those regions.
The HumansAfter I published my first article about Ashley Madison data, I got a several dozen emails from women and men who told me their stories about using the service. Some agreed with my assessment that the place is a sexbot farm. But many women described how they'd enjoyed the service for years, and men talked in glowing terms about all the amazing women they'd met, including some who fell in love and formed relationships after their ''affair.''
Several women specifically urged me to investigate how ''women seeking women'' were handled in the database and code. Many had met other women for threesomes with men, or just for a lesbian romp outside their heterosexual marriages. I decided to take their advice, because now it was clear that a lot more women were active in the membership than I initially believed.
What I found was that there are over 770,000 women seeking women in the database, out of 5.5 million women overall, and none of them are hosts. That's 14 percent, much higher than the estimated 1.5 percent of lesbians (and .9 percent of bisexuals) in the U.S. population. These may not be active accounts, but they don't appear to be Ashley Madison engagers either. If there are real women behind these accounts, we know they aren't getting bombarded with bot messages. Bots avoid women. And comments in the code reveal that ''woman seeking woman'' profiles aren't shown to straight men. It would seem that the only members of Ashley Madison who aren't inundated by spam and randos are women who seek trysts with other women or couples.
There are also about 345,000 men seeking men in the database, and we know from the patch I mentioned earlier that developers were working hard to prevent the engagers from harassing these guys too. It's possible, as one person put it to me in email, that Ashley Madison was actually a pretty decent hookup site for gay people'--but that was mostly because the system was designed to ignore them.
In fact, there are only 5 possible categories of desire allowed in the Ashley Madison code. Here they are, from a comment:
1: Attached Female Seeking Males
2: Attached Male Seeking Females
3: Single Male Seeking Attached Females
4: Single Female Seeking Attached Males
5: Attached Male Seeking Males
6: Attached Female Seeking Females
Note that you can't be a single woman seeking attached women, nor a single man seeking attached men. Nobody building this source code thought very hard about options for gay people.
Nobody thought much about women either. Now that we know how rarely women were contacted by bots, it seems certain that any human woman on the site would have been able to meet human men with little difficulty or interference. There is a certain freedom in being the group that is ignored the most. Hiding in a haze of spam bots, women were connecting with each other and with men. We don't know how many, nor how often, but we know they were doing it.
That said, a huge portion of Ashley Madison's software development efforts are aimed at refining their fembot army, to make it seem that women are active on the site. Either they did this because the number of real women was vanishingly small, or because they didn't want men to hook up with real women and stop buying credits from the company. Whatever the reason, it appears that the Ashley Madison money-making scheme was bots all the way down.
Art and data tables by Tara Jacoby
Thanks to the data researchers, anonymous and named, who helped me analyze this code.
Contact the author at annalee@gizmodo.com.Public PGP keyPGP fingerprint: 85E3 8F69 046B 44C1 EC9F B07B 76D7 8F05 00D0 26C4
Schengen recoil could turn EU travel back 20 years
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 18:33
European Union border control systems are under an unprecedented strain with the asylum seeker crisis. The EU bloc's external borders have physical boundaries and passport and customs checkpoints like anywhere else in the world, basically. Most of the borders inside the bloc no longer have this.
On June 14th 1985, European Economic Community Member States (Belgium, France, Germany (as it was then, pre-reunification), Luxembourg and the Netherlands) decided to get rid of internal borders '-- all the bloc's founding members except Italy. That first agreement was signed near Schengen, a small town in Luxembourg.
The countries working under the Schengen agreement do not systematically check travellers' ID, they can pass freely from one country to another. A convention was added in 1990 and the arrangement entered force in 1995. Barriers and border buildings were dismantled 20 years ago.
The Schengen Area has 26 signatory countries. This includes 22 EU states, but not Britain and Ireland (which opted out by choice), or Cyprus, Bulgaria, Romania and Croatia. Non-EU members Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Liechtenstein are, however, Schengen states.
The border-free Schengen Area guarantees free movement for more than 400 million EU citizens, and many non-EU nationals legally in the EU, but nationalists across Europe blame Schengen for the ease with which many migrants have travelled from southern to northern Europe.
To bolster security, in 2004 the Council of EU governments created the European Agency Frontex to oversee and coordinate between the various national external border managements. Its budget for 2015, however, comes to just 114 million euros, which does not stretch very far in an emergency.
The Schengen agreement has been never suspended over migration, just for major sport events and international meetings or as a precaution against terrorist attacks. But Germany warns that it could be, if refugees are not allocated fairly among all the EU states.
What Russian Intelligence Knows About Hillary Clinton
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 18:32
It is my privilege to reveal to you this highly classified National Security Agency intercept which reveals just what Russian intelligence knew about Hillary Clinton and her email security problems. While I believe that classified information should remain classified, this is a matter of such national importance, since Hillary could be our next Commander-in-Chief, that I am going whistleblower here and leaking this historic document.
FM: NSA
TO: Q07
SIGAD: US-968H
DOI: 23052009 1045Z
This intercept was received by an NSA covert SIGINT site. It is a conversation between two (2) senior officials of the Russian General Staff Main Intelligence Directorate (GRU). It discusses GRU SIGINT intercepts of conversations between high-ranking US Persons (USPs) in their official USG capacity and is to be handled on an EYES ONLY basis. FBI/NSD has been informed. White House/NSC and STATE are not '' repeat NOT '' authorized to receive this information due to counterintelligence concerns that have been verified by FBI/NSD and CIA/CIC.
This document is classified TOPSECRET//SI//NOFORN//NODISSEM in its entirety and is to be maintained as hard-copy only per the regulations of ECI SHOCKWAVE.
A: Sasha, what the [expletive deleted] are your guys over at BIGBEAR [1] doing?
B: What, Tolya? Have you been drinking again? [Laughs]
A: Just two, it's early.
B: Two is good, it stimulates the brain.
A: [Expletive deleted] it sure does! But look, I need some answers. The whole AQUARIUM [2] is up in arms over this.
B: Why? It's all great [expletive deleted]. If the BIGBEAR guys don't get us all promoted, what the [expletive deleted] ever will?
A: I know'....but the big guys here think it's, you know, too good.
B: The magic [expletive deleted/USP 1] in the White House is running strategic deception on us? [Laughs] They can't find their Ivy League [expletive deleted] with both hands!
A: Sure, but [USP 2]? They are cunning, [USP 3] knew we listened in on him when he was in the White House, surely.
B: You think he told his wife about that?
A: Well, it was funny, wasn't it? I loved the chat we intercepted when [USP 3] was getting [expletive deleted] from [USP 4] and then '' oh [expletive deleted] '' [USP 5] walked in on them and threw a potted plant at them both!
B: [Laughs] Operation INTERN SURPRISE! Slurp-slurp, then scream-scream! God, those were good times.
A: You know it's really too bad Beijing got to [USP 3] first with their cash, he seems like a fun guy.
B: His wife, not so much. [Laughs]
A: Yes, never enough vodka for that! [Laughs] And [USP 6] '' what the [expletive deleted] is the deal with her?
B: The Brotherhood [3] mole?
A: Really?
B: Yeah, we have that too. Cairo confirmed it last month.
A: Wow, the Americans are really [expletive deleted].
B: The emails we are getting from [USP 2]'s office tell it all.
A, Can this actually be real? Who is this stupid? Is [USP 2] trying to have completely open diplomacy?
B: It has to be real. They have absolutely no communications discipline, even for Americans. [Laughs] They are putting EVERYTHING [almost shouted] in these emails.
A: I saw that. It's unbelievable. How did we crack into this?
B: We didn't have to ''crack'' anything! [USP 2] uses her own email on her own server, and it's totally unencrypted!
A: [Expletive deleted] me, what?
B: I know, it's insane. They recently put some light encryption on ''her'' server, after months of no security at all, but we're deep inside now. We worked around it in 20 minutes. And [USP 2] does all her diplomacy on this line, unreal!
A: Who is this [USP 7] guy who's in every other email?
B: Oh, him. The one with the self-hating Jewish Nazi son? It's all too strange. He's [USP 2]'s close adviser, but boring and confused. Very self-important. I liked [USP 3]'s presidency better, more sex and drugs. [Laughs]
A: Are we absolutely certain Operation PANTSUIT [4] is legit? I need a firm answer for the bosses.
B: We are 100 percent sure. We've cross-referenced diplomatic information that [USPs 2 and 6] are putting in their open emails with other intercepts we're getting.
A: Excellent.
B: Just the other day [USP 2] emailed [USP 7] the readout of her meeting with the German ambassador and we intercepted the German account of it too '' they're not idiots like the Americans, it was in their encrypted communications, but we've been reading German diplomatic ciphers for years '' and they matched exactly.
A: Good, I'll tell the bosses that. Get the transcripts to me soon.
B: Will do, it all checks out.
A: The bosses still have some questions.
B: Shoot.
A: You know how it is. The NEIGHBORS [5] get them spun up with their stupid [expletive deleted] ''theories''.
B: What now?
A: They think ''Parks and Recreation'' is a secret American program to destabilize our economy. Something run by CIA using Facebook as their cut-out.
B: [Laughs] Those [expletive deleted] morons. The original BIGBEAR intercept said it's a [expletive deleted] television show!
A: I know, I know. But put that in the follow-up memo too, I need to cover my [expletive deleted] here.
B: Will do, not a problem, you'll have it by the end of the day.
A: Thanks, Sasha: I owe you one. But what about ''gefilte fish''? This seems to be an Israeli operation, something to do with Mossad.
B: Yes, BIGBEAR came to that conclusion as well. We're looking for more information. Given how deeply Mossad had [USP 3]'s White House penetrated, there is reason for concern.
A: Good, good'...put that in the memo too, that should get the attention of the bosses.
B: Just not The Boss, please! [6]
A: Oh [expletive deleted] no! The last thing we need is that Leningrad Chekist on us. No details outside of our channels, you know how he and his guys love to play counterspy over at the Kremlin. We have no time for that [expletive deleted].
B: Right, definitely. Bottom line is we're sure PANTSUIT checks out, it will all be in the memo.
A: Excellent, excellent. I still can't believe they're this stupid, but I like it! You'll get your star for this one, Sasha!
B: I'll believe that when I see it, but I will take your vodka until then, Tolya! [Laughs]
A: If [USP 2] ever manages to become President, we'll have it made. Keep up the great work and make sure I get every email these idiots send.
B: Will do, boss! We're getting every last one. These clowns will only stop emailing when they're dead! [Laughs]
COMMENTS:
A = GenMaj (one-star) Anatoliy V. POTAPOV, Chief of GRU Covert SIGINT Operations
B = Col Aleksandr N. SHAPOSHNIKOV, Senior GRU Staff Officer (NFI)
USP 1 = POTUS
USP 2 = SECSTATE
USP 3 = Former POTUS
USP 4 = Prominent Hollywood actress
USP 5 = Former White House employee
USP 6 = Senior STATE Staffer
USP 7 = Close friend of USPs 2 and 3, operating as an unofficial adviser to STATE
1. BIGBEAR is the GRU coverterm for their covert SIGINT site located inside the Russian Embassy in Washington, DC.
2. AQUARIUM (AKVARIUM) is the colloquial term for GRU Headquarters located at Khodynka Airfield near Moscow
3. ''Brotherhood'' is believed to refer to the Muslim Brotherhood.
4. Operation PANTSUIT is the GRU coverterm for their interception of USP 2's personal and STATE emails (which use the same address and reside on the same, non-USG server, according to GRU information; this violation of policy has been referred to FBI/NSD).
5. NEIGHBORS is a reference to the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR).
6. ''The Boss'' in this context is an apparent reference to Vladimir Putin.
[This document is, of course, a fake. I've used fake-but-accurately rendered ''classified'' information before to explain Hillary's EmailGate mess, and I am pretty sure this is a cosmically accurate, if fictional, rendering of events, based on my long dealings with Russian intelligence. GRU hasn't opened its archives to anybody, ever, so perhaps our descendants will find out in the 23rd century.]
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U.S. developing sanctions against China over cyberthefts - The Washington Post
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 18:26
By Ellen Nakashima,The Obama administration is developing a package of unprecedented economic sanctions against Chinese companies and individuals who have benefited from their government's cybertheft of valuable U.S. trade secrets.
The U.S. government has not yet decided whether to issue these sanctions, but a final call is expected soon '-- perhaps even within the next two weeks, according to several administration officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations.
Issuing sanctions would represent a significant expansion in the administration's public response to the rising wave of ­cyber-economic espionage initiated by Chinese hackers, who officials say have stolen everything from nuclear power plant designs to search engine source code to confidential negotiating positions of energy companies.
Any action would also come at a particularly sensitive moment between the world's two biggest economies. President Xi Jinping of China is due to arrive next month in Washington for his first state visit '-- complete with a 21-gun salute on the South Lawn of the White House and an elaborate State Dinner. There is already tension over a host of other issues, including maritime skirmishes in the South China Sea and China's efforts to devalue its currency in the face of its recent stock market plunge. At the same time, the two countries have deep trade ties and the administration has sometimes been wary of seeming too tough on China.
[Scott Walker: Obama should show 'some backbone' by canceling Chinese visit]
But the possibility of sanctions so close to Xi's visit indicates how frustrated U.S. officials have become over the persistent cyber plundering.
The sanctions would mark the first use of an order signed by President Obama in April establishing the authority to freeze financial and property assets of, and bar commercial transactions with, individuals and entities overseas who engage in destructive attacks or commercial espionage in cyberspace.
The White House declined to comment on specific sanctions, but a senior administration official, speaking generally, said: ''As the president said when signing the executive order enabling the use of economic sanctions against malicious cyber actors, the administration is pursuing a comprehensive strategy to confront such actors. That strategy includes diplomatic engagement, trade policy tools, law enforcement mechanisms, and imposing sanctions on individuals or entities that engage in certain significant, malicious cyber-enabled activities. The administration has taken and continues to introduce steps to protect our networks and our citizens in cyberspace, and we are assessing all of our options to respond to these threats in a manner and timeframe of our choosing.''
China is not the only country that hacks computer networks for trade secrets to aid its economy, but it is by far the most active, officials say. Just last month, the FBI said that economic espionage cases surged 53 percent in the past year, and that China accounted for most of that.
The expected sanctions move will send two signals, a second administration official said. ''It sends a signal to Beijing that the administration is going to start fighting back on economic espionage, and it sends a signal to the private sector that we're on your team. It tells China, enough is enough.''
The sanctions would be a second major shot at China on the issue. In May 2014, the Obama administration secured indictments on economic spying charges against five Chinese military members for hacking into the computer systems of major U.S. steel and other firms.
''The indictments were a strong move,'' said Rob Knake, a former White House cyber official and currently a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. ''This is going to be an even stronger move. It's really going to put China in the position of having to choose whether they want to be this pariah nation '-- this kleptocracy '-- or whether they want to be one of the leading nations in the world.''
Some officials within the government urged caution, arguing that sanctions would only create unnecessary friction. But everyone is on the same page now, officials said.
[In a world of cybertheft, U.S. names China, Russia as main culprits]
''Let's be honest, I can see the White House saying, 'Let's not do [sanctions] while the head of state is here,'' one administration official said. ''I can see maybe they'd shift the timing by a few days .'‰.'‰. but I can't imagine they'd shift the overall decision.''
In particular, officials from national security agencies, as well as at Treasury, which is the lead agency on economic sanctions under the executive order, have been eager to push ahead. The administration's goal is to impose costs for economic cyberspying. And the best strategy for doing that, officials said, is to use a variety of tools '-- indictments, sanctions, maybe even covert cyber actions.
Sanctions alone likely will not change China's behavior, some officials said. ''Done in tandem with other diplomatic pressure, law enforcement, military, intelligence, then you can actually start to impose costs and indicate that there are costs to the bilateral relationship,'' the first official said.
Some experts warn, though, that there are risks attached to imposing sanctions.
If sanctions are imposed, ''I'd say the chances of Chinese retaliation are high,'' said Jeffrey A. Bader, Obama's principal adviser on Asia from 2009 to 2011. But, he said, ''if a Chinese company was a beneficiary of stolen intellectual property from an American company, and the evidence is clear cut, then actions or sanctions against that Chinese company strike me as appropriate.''
While some officials fear that China might retaliate by discriminating against U.S. companies or freezing them out of contracts or markets, other officials counter that China has long discriminated against foreign companies, including U.S. firms, restricting access and procurement opportunities to create protected markets for domestic companies and instituting polices that require companies to turn over technology and intellectual property as a condition of doing business there.
The executive order authorizes the Treasury secretary, in consultation with the attorney general and secretary of state, to impose the sanctions on companies, individuals or entities that have harmed national security, or the nation's economy or foreign policy. It's not clear how many firms or individuals will be targeted, though one official said the Chinese firms would be large and multinational. Their activity must meet one of four ''harms'': attacking critical infrastructure, such as a power grid; disrupting major computer networks; stealing intellectual property or trade secrets; or benefiting from the stolen secrets and property.
It is that last prong, in particular, that has the potential to be quite effective, sanctions experts say. ''Obviously, there's no silver bullet,'' said Zachary Goldman, a former policy adviser at the Treasury Department's Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence and now executive director of New York University's Center on Law and Security. But if the sanctioned companies are large and global, ''they will effectively be put out of business.''
In practice, he said, most significant financial institutions refuse to do business with individuals who have been sanctioned by the United States. ''So any company that's been targeted under this authority,'' he said, ''will likely find it very difficult to participate in the international financial sector.''
The designations are being drawn up by a number of agencies, including the Treasury and Justice departments, the White House and the intelligence community. Evidence that the Justice Department has assembled over the past year or so in preparing possible indictments for economic espionage against Chinese companies and individuals is being used in support of the designations, officials said.
Sanctions provide government officials a greater ability to protect classified sources and evidence than a criminal prosecution might. But, analysts point out, there likely will be significant pressure on the administration to release as much evidence as possible to back up its designations to convince skeptics.
It is possible, some officials said, that entities or individuals from other countries besides China could be included in the sanctions package.
The sanctions would not be imposed in retaliation for China's hacks of the Office of Personnel Management databases, which compromised the personal and financial data of more than 22 million current and former government employees and family members. The data heists, which took place last year but were discovered this year, were judged as having been carried out for traditional intelligence purposes '-- not to benefit Chinese industry.
[What to do if you are a federal worker and your info was stolen]
Nonetheless, the severity of the OPM incidents helped convince wavering officials that firm action in the economic spying realm was warranted.
The U.S. government's response to the personnel data hacks has been much more muted. Rather than a public naming and shaming, it is considering covert cyber action. Officials have hinted at this, saying they may be taking steps that are not public.
The administration plans to raise the issue of China's behavior in cyberspace at the upcoming Obama-Xi summit, just as it has done at every major bilateral meeting. Cybersecurity is one of the top policy issues in the relationship, and also among the thorniest.
Ruan Zongze, a former Chinese Embassy official in Washington, said in a recent interview that separating economic from political espionage in cyberspace is ''impossible.'' He said: ''It's really difficult to tell one from the other.''
Ruan, vice president for the China Institute of International Studies, a think tank affiliated with the Chinese Foreign Ministry, said the two sides should talk about this. ''Finger-pointing,'' he said, ''is not the best way.''
The relationship between China and the United States is large and complex. ''There are going to be areas where we have cooperation and disagreement all at the same time,'' the first U.S. official said. ''That's just the reality of the relationship. The economic espionage and cybersecurity issues are going to continue to be a major irritant to the bilateral relationship.''
David Nakamura, Steven Mufson and Alice Crites contributed to this report.
Treasure hunter who spent 40 years searching for Nazi gold train reveals secrets | Daily Mail Online
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 18:03
Expert Tadeusz Slowikowski first heard of the mysterious train in the 1950sTold how family near the tunnel were shot dead as the Soviets advanced Railway worker revealed seeing the entrance - but only on his deathbedSlowikowski, 85, has been threatened by men who he believes poisoned his dog and tapped his phone as he got closer to finding out the truthBy Ed Wight In Walbrzych, Poland, For Mailonline
Published: 05:07 EST, 31 August 2015 | Updated: 07:53 EST, 31 August 2015
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An 85-year-old man who spent half his life searching for the missing Nazi gold train has revealed the murder, secret police intimidation and deathbed confession that led to its sensational discovery under a hillside in Poland.
The sprightly pensioner, who has an unrivalled insight into the hunt for the train, added that not only does he know where the train is hidden, but he also knows the identity of the two men who two weeks ago claimed to have found it - as well as the man who is said to have given a deathbed confession about its location.
As the world's press descend upon the small town of Walbrzych in southwest Poland, the country's equivalent of MI5, the Internal Security Service (ABW), have now moved into the area where the train is said to have disappeared 70 years ago, leading to speculation that secret Third Reich documents may be among its precious cargo.
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Expert: Walbrzych resident Tadeusz Slowikowski has been hunting for the mysterious Nazi gold train ever since he first heard of its existence back in the 1950s, from a man he rescued from being attacked. Here he shows a picture of where he believes the the tunnel entrance used to be
Deaths: This family lived in a house overlooking the entrance to the tunnel. Slowikowski claims they were all killed on May 5, 1945, by the Nazis just days before the Soviets marched in. Rail workers suspected it was to keep them quiet
Protected: It is said they went into specially constructed tunnels like this one, underneath the castle of Ksiaz
Tadeusz Slowikowski revealed to MailOnline how he first heard about the train hidden in the tunnel, and its dark and dangerous history, back in the 1950s.
Slowikowski said: 'I became aware of the tunnel after saving a German man named Schulz from being attacked by two men. As gratitude for saving him, he told me about the tunnel.'
The story Schulz told him was one of murder, fear and secrets, beginning in the dying days of the Second World War when another German man, then working on the railways, found the tunnel's entrance.
'A few Germans carried on living in the area after the war and this one had been working on the railways when he came across the entrance to the tunnel,' Slowikowski explained to MailOnline.
'He saw two tracks leading into the tunnel. The tunnel was blocked up very shortly afterwards.'
But the railway worker didn't say anything because he was afraid of what might happen - and with good reason: he feared he would meet the same fate as a family murdered in cold blood, apparently to keep the existence of the tunnel secret.
Holding up an old black and white wartime photo showing a man and two young boys standing outside a house with a tiled roof, Slowikowski said: 'This house used to overlook the track.
'From the top window you could see everything coming and going on the railway line. On the 5th of May 1945, the family living there were all shot dead and the house razed to the ground. It was three days before the Soviets took the town.
'Whoever killed them didn't want them talking about anything they had seen. There is nothing there now. Just an empty space where the house used to be. Nothing has been built there since.'
Rumours: Local legend says three armoured trains disappeared under the hill never to be seen again in 1945
Terror: It scared those who knew of the tunnel so much, its location was only revealed on one man's deathbed - but it gave Slowikowski (pictured with a 1928 map of the railways) enough to start with
Spotted: The Polish authorities have said they have now seen proof of a 100 metre train under the hill
But the elderly German man eventually plucked up the courage to tell Schulz what he had seen on his deathbed - and this was the information now passed onto Slowikowski.
It was enough to pique Slowikowski's interest in the train, which local legend says is filled with Nazi gold, stolen from the Jews they sent to their deaths in their millions.
In the four decades since, Slowikowski, who is widely recognised in Poland as being one of the leading experts on the missing train, has studied maps and data from the area.
Poring over a yellowing, dog-eared map from 1928, he outlined the route from Wroclaw to Walbrzych which clearly shows a siding going into the hillside.
The siding and the tunnel have now both gone.
After presenting his findings to the government, Slowikowski said he was given official permission in 2003 to begin exploring the area.
But it seems there were still those who wanted to keep the existence of the train secret.
He said: 'As soon as we started, three men in civilian clothes and carrying guns came up to us and threatened us, telling us to stop. I didn't know who they were, but I had my suspicions.
'Shortly afterwards my dog was poisoned. Then my front door was smashed in and then my phones began to be tapped. These were classic tactics of the secret police when they wanted to intimidate people.'
He added: 'It continues today. My phone is still monitored and I was warned recently by some strangers to stay away. I got a phone call telling me to keep my nose out.'
The warnings echo that of another researcher MailOnline spoke to.
Asking not to be named for fear of reprisals, the treasure hunter said: 'I received a phone call from a mysterious man who warned me to stay away from the story and to not get involved.
'A lot of dangerous people are interested in finding this train, this could have been a warning from one of them. This man who called me knows that I know something.'
But this hasn't stopped gentle, grey-haired Slowikowski from speaking out. He has even had a model railway set designed to show the location in a garage behind the house.
Exploring: Slowikowski - who even built a replica of the location of the tunnel, pictured - was able to put in a bid to explore the area in 2003, which was accepted by the Polish government. But it put him in danger
Danger: Not only was he at risk of being blown up by the booby-trapped train by a mine like this one which he found in another tunnel (explosives would have been packed into the holes), but there were people who still wanted its existence kept secret
Warning: Slowikowski was also threatened by three men, and then his dog was poisoned and his phone tapped
Discovery: It hasn't stopped him speaking out about its location (pictured), and the recent claim matches his own theories about where the train's final hiding place is
Disappearing trick: Here Slowikoski poses next to the spot where he believes the siding (photoshopped by him in this image) was located that took the gold train into the tunnel. The siding has been removed since in real life
The model, a replica of the 1928 map, shows two railway tracks running parallel to each other as they enter a section lined by hills on either side.
As the tracks enter the area, one branches off on a siding and disappears into a tunnel.
That location has now been officially named by the Polish government as being on a 4km stretch of railway from the city of Wroclaw, where the so-called gold train is said to have started its journey before disappearing under the hill.
Authorities have said they have seen evidence of the train's existence in a picture taken using a ground-penetrating radar, which even showed the shape of a train platform and cannons.
But the thought of the treasures inside has drawn people from as far away as Japan in the hope of finding their own piece of history - despite deputy minister of culture Piotr Zuchowski appealing to them to 'immediately stop their searching for their own safety'.
The mayor of Walbrzych Roman Szelemej said forestry guards had now sealed off the area where the train is thought to be and had banned people from entering.
Szelemej - who said they were still treating the claim with 'scepticism', adding 'Walbrzych and Lower Silesia are full of secrets' - said: 'There are several hectares to secure and we will send in the military to check the area.
'There are a lot of former military installations spread around the area, but this is the first time we have received anything in writing rather than just hearing gossip.'
Piotr Zuchowski, Poland's National Heritage and Conservation Officer, told reporters last week: 'There may be hazardous substances dating from the Second World War in the hidden train, which I'm convinced exist.
'I am appealing to people to stop any such searches until the end of official procedures leading to the securing of the find. There's a huge probability that the train is booby-trapped.'
Asked whether he thought the trains would be booby-trapped or that amateur treasure hunters were in danger from unexploded bombs, Slowikowski points to a concrete, football-shaped block on the ground.
'That is an old mine I found in another tunnel,' he said. 'There are many tunnels around here with many secrets, possibly other trains. The holes in the mine would have been packed with explosives.
'Whether it was used to blow up a tunnel entrance or to protect cargo, who knows,' he said. 'But there could be more around, for sure.'
More trains? Magdalena Woch, director of culture at Ksiaz castle, believes this may not be the only locomotive hiding underneath the former Nazi headquarters (pictured), and may not contain the gold
Hopeful: That hasn't stopped treasure hunters rushing to the scene in the hope of finding something amazing
Closer: Another map, this time showing the exact spot where the train is believed to be
There could also be more than just the one 100-metre long train hidden in the complex network of tunnels built under the Nazi's local headquarters at the castle of Ksiaz and deep into the surrounding hills.
Local lore says Nazi Germany ordered the vast underground network, which snakes around the massive castle, be built to hide Third Reich valuables.
Inmates from the nearby Gross Rosen concentration camp were used to build the huge tunnels - codenamed Riese (Giant) - to use as production spaces for strategic weapons, as the site was safe from Allied air raids.
Located in the passages were underground Nazi shelters, as well as one of Adolf Hitler's headquarters - and, potentially, a number of trains.
Magdalena Woch, director of culture at the castle, told The Telegraph: 'There is a story that in 1945 there were three trains which came into the town and have never been found.
'It is possible there are more trains in Walbrzych.'
Ms Woch suggested, even if gold is not found in this particular train, it could still be found.
'The gold may not be in the train that has been found but in one of these better secured military trains,' she said.
Speculation around what is actually in the train has reached fever pitch, with people keen to lay their claim quickly.
It seems relatively certain any treasure would not come in the form of gold bars, but the valuables of people sent to the Nazis' death camps.
Different kind of treasure: There is some speculation it may not be gold, but pieces of art - and even the long-lost Amber Room, stolen from Russia in 1941, which has not been seen since 1945
HOW AN AMBER CABINET BECAME THE AMBER ROOM The Amber Room was originally just a cabinet, given as a gift to Peter the Great
The Amber Room was originally an amber cabinet, a gift from Friedrich-Wilhelm I of Prussia to Peter the Great, who admired the piece of work on a visit to his castle in 1716.
But it was decided to use the panels as wall coverings, surrounding them with gilded carving, mirrors and yet more amber panels.
In total, the room used 450kg of amber, and was finally completed in 1770.
The room was so fragile it had a permanent caretaker.
When the Nazis arrived at Catherine Castle in St Petersburg in 1941, the Russians had tried to hide the treasure behind wallpaper.
But the Nazis knew what was behind the mundane covering, and went about dismantling the £250m room - a process which took 36 hours.
They believed, as a Prussian gift, it belonged to them.
But the room, apparently taken back to the castle where it had originally been created for Friedrich-Wilhelm, was never seen again after 1945.
Some claimed it had been destroyed in the bombings, but others say the panels were spirited away by the Nazis keen to keep hold of their loot.
But the Russians weren't willing to give up on this crowning glory, and began a replica in 1982.
It took more than 20 years and cost more than $12million, but visitors to the Catherine Palace, near St Petersburg, can now see the grand room for themselves.
Sources:Catherine Palaceand theSmithsonian
Disappeared: Some suspect the spectacular wall coverings were whisked away by the Nazis as the Red Army marched on East Prussia (pictured: the replica Amber Room)
Slowikowski, whose mother was killed in Auschwitz death camp, pointed out: 'A lot of the valuables taken from Jews in Auschwitz were sent to a bank vault in Wroclaw. Thousands of gold from teeth were taken. So too were rings, necklaces and diamonds.'
That belongings taken from Jews may be on the train has infuriated The World Jewish Congress which has now demanded any such loot be refunded to the families of those killed.
Robert Singer, head of the World Jewish Congress said: 'To the extent that any items now being discovered in Poland may have been stolen from Jews before they were sent to death ... it is essential that every measure is taken to return the property to its rightful owners or to their heirs.
'We very much hope that the Polish authorities will take the appropriate action in that respect,' he added.
But another theory suggests it is more likely the train contains artworks, and perhaps even the Amber Room, which once stood in pride of place in the Cahterine Palace, near St Petersburg, but has not been seen since 1945.
The room, made of amber, gold and precious jewels, was stolen by the Nazis in 1941, and taken by rail to Koenigsberg Castle, in what was then East Prussia. Now, the castle is found in the city of Kaliningrad.
But it disappeared In January 1945, after air raids and a savage ground assault on the city.
While some claimed it had been destroyed in the raids, others reported seeing 40 wagons moving away from the castle under a cloak of secrecy after the city fell to the Red Army.
Documents: Andrzej Gaik (pictured) believes the train could contain secret Nazi plans
Fascination: He thinks the Polish government are likely to be very interested in these documents
Content: Even though Slowikowski did not put the claim in, he says he is happy it has been revealed
Final secret: But the identities of the two men who made the claim have remained a mystery
It follows that a Russian lawyer has also laid claim to any booty found.
Mikhail Joffe was quoted by Russian media as arguing that 'if the property has been taken from the USSR, then the cargo, in accordance with international law, must be passed to the Russian side.'
But, according to one local expert in Walbrzych, the train could contain secret documents.
Former policeman Andrzej Gaik, who has also spent many years investigating the missing train, told the MailOnline: 'It is both possible and likely that this train was carrying important information which the Polish State would be very interested in. This could include secret documents about the Riese project.'
All of these questions could soon be answered, as the Polish government prepares to explore the tunnels.
But the identity of the two men who awakened the mystery that has gripped the world after revealing they had found it and demanded 10 per cent of its value still remains a closely guarded secret.
Many of the train hunters MailOnline has spoken to have said they have they think they know who the men are.
One insider said: 'The gold community hunting these secrets is pretty small. Everyone knows everyone. And everyone has their suspicions about who this pair are.
'But there is, for want of a better expression, a conspiracy of silence. No-one dare name them.
'Look, as I say, the community is small. People talk. Journalists have been all over this for two weeks and yet no one has put forward any names.'
Back in his garden, octogenarian Slowikowski smiles when asked if he knows the identity.
'Of course I do,' he said. 'Two weeks ago they came to my house to apologise. They said they were sorry for revealing the location without consulting me.
'But I don't mind.
'After all my work I am happy the location will now be revealed.
'But I won't reveal them.'
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Putting Donald Trump on the Couch - NYTimes.com
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 17:56
AS surprising as Donald J. Trump's political ascendance may be, it is not unprecedented. He is the latest in a long line of demagogues that have appeared throughout American history to point accusing fingers at blacks, foreigners, Masons, Jews, socialists, central bankers and others. What's more mysterious are the roots of his vast insecurity '-- his compulsive need to trumpet his wealth, his smarts, his popularity. What is he compensating for?
When Hollywood wants us to understand a character, it gives us a Rosebud '-- an event or an object, like the wooden sled in ''Citizen Kane,'' that reflects the character's essence. Mr. Trump's Rosebud moment, I learned recently from a story on WNYC, happened one day in 1964, when he accompanied his father to the opening ceremony of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge.
As Mr. Trump recounted the story for Howard Blum in The New York Times in 1980: ''The rain was coming down for hours '... But all I'm thinking about is that all these politicians who opposed the bridge are being applauded.'' Even as a wet-behind-the-ears kid, he wanted the reporter to understand, he couldn't abide the hypocrisy of big shots. ''In a corner,'' he continued, ''just standing there in the rain, is this man, this 85-year-old engineer who came from Sweden and designed this bridge, who poured his heart into it, and nobody even mentioned his name.
''I realized then and there,'' the budding real estate mogul and future Republican front-runner concluded, ''that if you let people treat you how they want, you'll be made a fool. I realized then and there something I would never forget: I don't want to be made anybody's sucker.''
Who was that sad sack in the corner? It's worth asking, because the Trump Rosebud moment reveals more than he perhaps realizes '-- and not just about himself, but about the people who are swelling his poll numbers.
Othmar H. Ammann was born in Switzerland, not Sweden, in 1879, and came to the United States in 1904. He proposed, designed and oversaw the construction of the George Washington Bridge and was closely involved with others around the country, the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco among them. As the chief engineer of the Port Authority of New York and the Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority, he oversaw the building of the Lincoln Tunnel, the Outerbridge Crossing and the Bronx-Whitestone, Throgs Neck, Triborough, Bayonne and Goethals Bridges.
Gay Talese's scene-painting in his front page New York Times account of the bridge opening is no less evocative, but it differs from Mr. Trump's in some key particulars. First, there's the matter of the weather and the general mood of the day (''the sun shone, the sky was cloudless; bands played, cannons echoed up and down the harbor, flags waved''). And the master of ceremonies, Robert Moses, praised Ammann, calling him ''the greatest living bridge engineer, perhaps the greatest of all time.'' The crowd applauded, Mr. Talese noted, ''but Mr. Moses forgot to mention his name.''
So here is the 85-year-old Ammann, standing near the suspended span, then the longest in the world, a great triumph. ''Modest, unassuming, and too often overlooked'' (also Moses's words), he sat down after that unintentional slight.
And there's Donald Trump, then 18 years old, writing off this prodigious doer as a consummate sucker. As Jerome Tuccille would write in his 1985 book ''Trump: The Saga of America's Most Powerful Real Estate Baron,'' ''Donald must have made a conscious decision that day in 1964 to make sure his name was prominently stamped on everything he built.'' It's stamped on a lot of other things, too, from books to cologne.
''Great salespeople truly understand the people they are dealing with,'' Mr. Trump has written. And who are the people that he is closing his presidential deal with? People who are afraid that they are being made suckers too. Mr. Trump's angry certainty that immigrants and other losers are destroying the country while the cultural elites that look down on him stand by and do nothing resonates strongly with the less-educated, lower-income whites who appear to be his base.
''We don't have victories anymore,'' Mr. Trump told those deeply aggrieved Americans in June. ''When did we last beat Japan at anything?'' And, when, he said ''do we beat Mexico at the border? They're laughing at us, at our stupidity.'' They are, he said, ''killing us economically.''
White nationalists like David Duke have been energized to see a politician who is so unapologetically ''pro-white.'' Would-be Joe-the-Plumbers are inspired to see someone who talks and seemingly thinks just like they do and yet who has so much money '-- it gives them hope that the free enterprise system may yet deliver their dreams.
I suspect that Mr. Trump doesn't put too much stock in his rhetoric, and that most of his followers know better, too. But those are the buttons he is pushing, and they are working well. The thrice married former casino owner is easily outpolling Mike Huckabee, a former evangelical pastor, among evangelicals; though a defender of Medicare and Social Security, his margin among Tea Partyers against Ted Cruz, who wants to dismantle many social programs, is even bigger. To tell you the truth, I am starting to worry that his poisonous message may carry him to the White House.
Then the whole world really will be laughing at our stupidity.
What a bunch of losers, they'll say. And they'll be right.
Arthur Goldwag is the author of several books, including ''The New Hate: A History of Fear and Loathing on the Populist Right.''
'Taylor Swift liet geen scheet tijdens VMA'
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 17:36
Exclusieve artikelen van de Telegraaf redactie
di 01 sep 2015, 17:09
van onze redactieVideo- MTV wil een hardnekkig gerucht de wereld uit helpen: Taylor Swift heeft g(C)(C)n scheetje gelaten toen ze live in de uitzending haar nieuwe videoclip aankondigde.
Taylor stond met haar groepje beroemde vriendinnen op de rode loper toen ze de videoclip van Wildest Dreams mocht aankondigen.
Tijdens haar introductie was er een geluid te horen dat wel heel veel leek op een scheetje, en dat precies op het moment dat de zangeres een beetje door haar knien zakte! Het gebeuren ging uiteraard meteen rond op Twitter.
MTV heeft nu bloedserieus op deze scheetgate gereageerd. In een verklaring laat de zender volgens Digitalspy weten: "MTV kan bevestigen dat het geluid uit een productiemicrofoon kwam. Er is absoluut geen enkele mogelijkheid dat het geluid van Taylor of iemand anders uit haar groepje kwam."
Weten we dat ook weer!
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Third Greek Bailout Suddenly In Jeopardy: Creditors Warn Cash May Be Delayed If Elections Don't Go As Desired
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 17:33
Just when everyone was convinced that the main "risk off" event of the summer, namely the Greek bailout, was safely tucked away and that having abdicated its sovereignty to its creditors and Germany in particular, who now hold the Greek banking system hostage courtesy of draconian capital controls, that Greece would continue to receive its monthly cash allotment just so it could repay creditors from its first two bailouts and would not make headlines for the foreseeable future , Market News just reported that suddenly even the Greek bailout is no longer on autopilot as a result of the upcoming elections in three weeks, whose outcome is anything but assured.
According to Market News, "Greece's international creditors may delay the first review of the country's bailout until November, multiple EU sources told MNI Tuesday, pushing talks on potential debt relief further down the road as Greece prepares for snap national elections on September 20."
And just in case it was not clear that Greek sovereignty is now entirely conditional on the Greek people voting precisely as the Troika requires, and for a continuation of the austerity terms delineated in the 3rd Greek bailout, MNI reports that "officials will also stress that any new government that emerges from this month's poll must meet the current bailout terms in order to release the E3 billion pending from the its first loan tranche and have already warned the interim government to continue with the implementation of prior actions set for September."
In other words more of the same: Greece pretending to reform, creditors pretending to inject funds into the Greek economy:
"Realistically speaking, the inspectors' return to Greece might be delayed and the first assessment could take place in November instead of October. In such an event I don't expect talks about another Greek debt relief to run simultaneously," a top Commission source said. "But the new Greek government will have to implement a new set of milestones before receiving the remaining E3 billion irrespective of who wins."
As a reminder, Greece and its creditors have yet to define the package of measures that will be attached as milestones and prior actions for the release of the E3 billion.
Furthermore, the biggest hurdle to any Greek formalized bailout, the IMF's participation, remains anything but resolved: "there is still ambiguity about the involvement of the International Monetary Fund and when it will choose to agree with Greece a third loan programme. But the EU schedule will run irrespective of that."
Another source said that the IMF's Poul Thomsen gave recently a background briefing to the Board of Directors of the Fund where "he expressed his scepticism and reservations about the effectiveness of the new bailout and whether the IMF should participate."
What is perplexing, is that none of this comes as a surprise to the Greek creditors: "EU leadership and Eurozone Finance Ministers knew as early as July that outgoing Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras would call elections within September."
And here is where things get tricky: "we thought at the time that he (Tsipras) will win again and the everything will go as agreed," the source said, adding that "now there is background worry about the outcome and the formation of the new (Greek) government, even the possibility of double elections."
The reason for the worry is that unexpected to many, Syriza's lead, which as recently as a month ago was seen as insurmountable, has dwindled to almost nothing. As Reuters reported over the weekend, "the gap between Syriza and the conservative New Democracy party has shrunk to 1.5 percentage points, according to a survey by pollster Alco for Sunday's proto Thema newspaper.The poll gave Syriza 22.6 percent against 21.1 percent for New Democracy, with 79 percent of respondents saying Tsipras had disappointed their expectations and 66 percent believing he was wrong to call early elections."
But the biggest wildcard may be the Greek youth. Overnight, Bloomberg reported that none other than "Syriza Youth Wing" has withdrawn its support for Tsipras: "We won't support Syriza in forthcoming elections, nor participate in its election ticket,'' majority of Syriza party's youth wing leadership says in statement posted on its official website. Instead, the group's members say will continue fight against bailouts outside Syriza party, citing Alexis Tsipras's decision to support an austerity-attached agreement with creditors as reason for their departure.
So the question suddenly becomes: if another party does what Syriza did in late 2014 when it promised to end austerity (with results that were very well known), will they win? And who could it be: will it be Varoufakis new "Pan-European anti-austerity" party? Or will Golden Dawn be given the mandate this time? The answer: probably neither, because courtesy of the Greek capital controls, the local population is still beholden to its European overlords courtesy of the ongoing indefinite lockdown on some '‚¬120 billion in Greek deposits.
One thing is certain: Greece will be making market-moving headlines once again, months if not years earlier than most had expected.
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Sprinklers Drench Guests At Swanky Hillary Clinton Fundraiser
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 17:30
All wet.
Via PageSix:
Hillary was fªted by a high-fashion crowd at Tory Burch's majestic Hamptons mansion on Sunday '-- but well-heeled guests got drenched by the designer's sprinkler system as the presidential candidate stood up to speak.
Guests at Burch's palatial, $38 million ''Gatsby''-era estate, which sits on 15.4 lush acres in Southampton, included Anna Wintour, Martha Stewart, Donna Karan, Barneys owner Richard Perry and his designer wife, Lisa.
But as Hillary, who was on a covered terrace, started to speak to 200 guests who fanned out into the garden, Burch's sprinkler system suddenly went on, soaking some of the well-attired attendees.
Keep reading'...
Obama: Global warming is a national security threat. Now, let's buy some new icebreakers so we can exploit it'...
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 17:25
As we told you, President Obama is in Alaska where he went off on ''climate change deniers'' in a speech yesterday, saying that ''those who want to ignore the science, they are increasingly alone'' and that ''they are on their own shrinking island'':
And let's not forget that President Obama has said repeatedly that global warming is a national security threat. For example, Obama said this in his commencement speech at the Coast Guard Academy earlier this year:
But when global warming gives you lemons, make lemon-slushies. It turns out that all of the melting ice could be good for U.S. businesses and we need new icebreakers to protect our interests as well as to cut into the icebreaker-gap with Russia. Obama announced today:
There's not much chatter yet about this proposal, but it is starting to make the alarmist community a little angry:
Hey, you can't drill in the Arctic without a few Arctic icebreakers!
***
http://twitchy.com/2015/05/20/utterly-clueless-obamas-indisputable-science-lecture-to-coast-guard-grads-called-out/
US to Expand Icebreaker Fleet in Arctic in Attempt to Catch Up With Russia
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 17:24
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) '' The United States will speed up the building of heavy icebreakers for the Arctic and provide resources to expand its icebreaker fleet, the White House said in a press release on Tuesday.''The Administration will propose to accelerate acquisition of a replacement heavy icebreaker to 2020 from 2022, begin planning for construction of additional icebreakers, and call on Congress to work with the Administration to provide sufficient resources to fund these critical investments,'' the White House said.
The White House said with the warming of the Arctic and an increase in human activity, the United States aims to gain year-round access to the region.
''These heavy icebreakers will ensure that the United States can meet our national interests, protect and manage our natural resources, and strengthen our international, state, local, and tribal relationships,'' the White House said of the new investment in icebreakers.
US officials have admitted the country has been slow in developing an Arctic policy compared to Russia, which has been pressing ahead with efforts to develop its Arctic territories, including hydrocarbon production and the development of the Northern Sea Route.
Moscow has also boosted its military presence in the region.
Ben Carson the Porch Boy
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 17:23
As another Lame Cherry exclusive in matter anti matter.In life, one witnesses people vouching for others which they know absolutely nothing about, and yet believing the worst about the other.
Recently I saw a person saying what a great guy Dr. Ben Carson was having met him a few times.
My first thought was, "Do you owe Ben Carson money or does he owe you money? Only in that do you begin to get a glimpse of what Ben Carson is."
The same reality is, if you are naked and available on a bed, and Ben Carson is horny, is he going to do the right thing or is he going to go Cosby on you? Bill Clinton was perfectly harmless with witnesses around, but a rapist when no one but the woman was around.
I am going to have an expose' on Ben Carson which is going to ask some questions about him which are troubling by his very own, Dreams of my Carson, writings, which others have reviewed and I see troubling manifestations in.
For now, I will focus on the reality of CARSONGATE, a polling scandal of illegal election tampering, where Monmouth ran two back to back polls on August 30th and 31st, but the poll which showed Carson five points behind Trump, but by miracle, Carson was even with Trump in the poll which appeared somehow on the 31st, which was the poll the entire media started Monday off with.............Ah, how is it a Monday poll was created before it could have been created in phoning hundreds of people to make them go through almost 20 GOP candidates and other questions about America?
That is what a real conspiracy is. Ben Carson is a tool of the GOP elite to destroy Donald Trump in the first "racial" prod in what is going to be more GOP covert political assassination attempts to chisel at Donald Trump. Carson is never going to be the choice of these pasty white old perverts for Obama........this is about Jeb Bush, and the proof is Ben Carson is a Jebcaver. Rand Paul failed and is failing, and Carson is the tool for this first assault.
Do you know where Ben Carson gets his money from? The super pac which runs him is quite anonymous, except for the one outsider pac which is run by Herman Cain. You remember Herman Cain, the great Obama hope who was an adulterer pervert and forced from the GOP primaries. Yes all is black among these Afroids, in it is Sharpton with Carson and Carson with Cain. It is all racial and I suspect like all of these Afroids, that Ben Carson behind closed booth polling doors voted for Obama in 2008 and 2012 while going public and bashing him, as he knew the GOP needed a black to bash Obama with as the old pasty white pervs were terrified of being called racists.
So good guy Ben Carson is someone who likes using butchered baby parts as it would be a waste not to use them.......perhaps we can go dig up dead holocaust Jews as why waste them too.Then there is the Ben Carson in bed with anything black.Then there is the Ben Carson who is the porch boy for the GOP elite being funded and sent out to destroy Donald Trump in the second wave as the Kelly and Paul waves failed.
Ben Carson is guilty with Monmouth University and the GOP elite of election tampering to manipulate voters. That ain't a good guy.
Ben Carson is the porch boy of the elite, from Herman Cain's Jack n Jill aristocracy to Jeb Bush's political elite.
Ben Carson is part of the group who forced this blog off of Facebook. That is the reality of Ben Carson.
There are patterns forming around Ben Carson and he is a porch boy.
Nuff said
agtG
Plague time: CDC puts doctors on alert for Bubonic plague in U.S.
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 17:20
Since April 2015, eleven cases of plague have been recorded in the U.S., and three people have died leaving the CDC no other recourse but to issuea warning to alert doctorsof potential cases that may arise.There is a "Heightened Risk"
"It is unclear why the number of cases in 2015 is higher than usual," the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says. Many of the cases are occurring in rural and semi-rural areas in the western United States. The report lists two cases in Arizona, one in California, four in Colorado, one in Georgia, two in New Mexico and one in Oregon. The cases in California and Georgia have been linked to areas in or near Yosemite National Park in the southern Sierra Nevada. Dr. Natalie Kwit of the CDC emphasizes, "We don't want people to panic but we do want them to be aware of the heightened risk."
The CDC has recorded 1006 confirmed or probable human plague cases occurred in the United States between 1900 and 2012. Over 80% of United States plague cases have been the bubonic form. The plague is a rare and dangerous disease caused by the bacterium, Yersinia pestis and passed from humans by infected fleas and rodents typically in the wild. Many may remember how the Black Death killed around 30 - 60 percent of the population in Europe. These days, the bacteria is typically treated with antibiotics. With many antibiotic resistance strains of bacterias occurring, this begs the question. Will this plague rampantly spread like it once did?Types of Plague to Look Out For"Health care providers should consider the diagnosis of plague in any patient with compatible signs or symptoms, residence or travel in the western United States, and recent proximity to rodent habitats or direct contact with rodents or ill domestic animals," the CDC says in its report.
Although the bubonic plague is the most common form that occurs in the United States, there are three types of the plague to be aware of.
Bubonic plague: Patients develop sudden onset of fever, headache, chills, and weakness and one or more swollen, tender and painful lymph nodes (called buboes). This form usually results from the bite of an infected flea. The bacteria multiply in the lymph node closest to where the bacteria entered the human body. If the patient is not treated with the appropriate antibiotics, the bacteria can spread to other parts of the body.
Septicemic plague: Patients develop fever, chills, extreme weakness, abdominal pain, shock, and possibly bleeding into the skin and other organs. Skin and other tissues may turn black and die, especially on fingers, toes, and the nose. Septicemic plague can occur as the first symptom of plague, or may develop from untreated bubonic plague. This form results from bites of infected fleas or from handling an infected animal.
Pneumonic plague: Patients develop fever, headache, weakness, and a rapidly developing pneumonia with shortness of breath, chest pain, cough, and sometimes bloody or watery mucous. Pneumonic plague may develop from inhaling infectious droplets or may develop from untreated bubonic or septicemic plague after the bacteria spread to the lungs. The pneumonia may cause respiratory failure and shock. Pneumonic plague is the most serious form of the disease and is the only form of plague that can be spread from person to person (by infectious droplets).
How to Prevent the Bubonic Plague
Although the government is closely monitoring the situation, California is actually mapping where the plague is occurring in the state. It is important to note that there is no vaccination of this illness. In the past, many relied on four thieves oil to naturally protect them from this disease, however prevention is the best recourse.
Follow these tips from the CDC:Reduce rodent habitat around your home, work place, and recreational areas. Remove brush, rock piles, junk, cluttered firewood, and possible rodent food supplies, such as pet and wild animal food. Make your home and outbuildings rodent-proof.Wear gloves if you are handling or skinning potentially infected animals to prevent contact between your skin and the plague bacteria. Contact your local health department if you have questions about disposal of dead animals.Use repellent if you think you could be exposed to rodent fleas during activities such as camping, hiking, or working outdoors. Products containing DEET can be applied to the skin as well as clothing and products containing permethrin can be applied to clothing (always follow instructions on the label).Keep fleas off of your pets by applying flea control products. Animals that roam freely are more likely to come in contact with plague infected animals or fleas and could bring them into homes. If your pet becomes sick, seek care from a veterinarian as soon as possible.Do not allow dogs or cats that roam free in endemic areas to sleep on your bed.Remove garbage, clutter, brush and anything that could be a food source for rodents.How to Prepare for These Type of DiseasesAlthough the bubonic plague is a relatively rare occurrence, it only emphasizes the need to be prepared. Ensure that you have these items on hand in order to prepare for pandemic-like disasters.
Tess Penningtonis the author ofThe Prepper's Blueprint, a comprehensive guide that uses real-life scenarios to help you prepare for any disaster. Because a crisis rarely stops with a triggering event the aftermath can spiral, having the capacity to cripple our normal ways of life. The well-rounded, multi-layered approach outlined in theBlueprinthelps you make sense of a wide array of preparedness concepts through easily digestible action items and supply lists.Tess is also the author of the highly ratedPrepper's Cookbook, which helps you to create a plan for stocking, organizing and maintaining a proper emergency food supply and includes over 300 recipes for nutritious, delicious, life-saving meals.
Visit her web site atReadyNutrition.comfor an extensive compilation of free information on preparedness, homesteading, and healthy living.
How The US State Department Help Desk Unexpectedly "Discovered" Hillary Clinton's Personal Email
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 17:17
The following exchange, released as part of the most recent data dump by Hillary Clinton in which she unveiled over 7,000 pages of "non-personal" emails, and which is the direct result of the scandal erupting once it was revealed that Hillary Clinton had a personal email account (hdr22@clintonemail.com) and a personal email server which supposedly nobody knew about, reveals that not only did the State Department help desk know about said personal email as early as 2010, but that revelation led to the following delightful exchange.
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September 2015: We Officially Enter The Danger Zone | Zero Hedge
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 17:16
Submitted by Michael Snyder via The Economic Collapse blog,
Is September 2015 going to be one of the most important months in modern American history? When I issued my first ever ''red alert'' for the last six months of 2015 back in June, I was particularly concerned with the months of September through December, and not just for economic reasons. All of the intel that I have received is absolutely screaming that big trouble is ahead. So enjoy these last few days of relative peace and quiet. I mean that sincerely. In fact, that is exactly what I have been doing '' over the past week I have not posted many articles because I was spending time with family, friends and preparing for the national call to prayer on September 18th and 19th. But now as we enter the chaotic month of September 2015 I have a feeling that there is going to be plenty for me to write about.
At this time last month, I declared that we were entering ''the pivotal month of August 2015'', and that is exactly what it turned out to be. August was the worst month overall for stocks in three years, and it was the worst month of August for U.S. financial markets in 17 years.
Throughout history, there have only been 11 times when the S&P 500 has declined by more than five percent during the month of August. When that has happened, the stock market has almost always fallen in September as well'...
September is the only month in which the S&P 500 fell more frequently than it rose. What's more, in the 11 times that the S&P 500 fell by more than 5 percent in August, it declined in 80 percent of the subsequent Septembers, and fell an average of nearly 4 percent.
Last week, there was a rally after the initial crash. I warned that this would happen in advance, and we have seen a similar pattern play out during almost every market collapse throughout history. The following comes from John Hussman'...
As I noted early this year (see A Better Lesson than ''This Time Is Different''), market crashes ''have tended to unfold after the market has already lost 10-14% and the recovery from that low fails.'' Prior pre-crash bounces have generally been in the 6-7% range, which is what we observed last week, so I certainly don't see that bounce as having removed any of our concerns. We remain extremely alert to the prospect for much more extended market losses.
So how far could stocks eventually fall?
Hussman is projecting that we could ultimately see the market decline by more than 50 percent'...
We fully expect a 40-55% market loss over the completion of the present market cycle. Such a loss would only bring valuations to levels that have been historically run-of-the-mill.
One thing that could accelerate stock market losses this time around is the fact that people have been borrowing lots and lots of money to buy stocks. That works when the stock market just keeps going up, but once the market turns the margin calls can lead to panic selling on a massive scale. The following comes from a recent piece by Wolf Richter in which he describes some of the chaos that we have already been witnessing'...
Energy stocks and bonds crashed, even those of some large companies like Chesapeake. Some have reached zero. All kinds of other stocks and bonds have gotten eviscerated over the past few months, even tech darlings like Twitter or biotech giant Biogen. Portfolios with a focus on the wrong momentum stocks took a very serious hit.
And margin calls went out. The Journal:
Some lenders, including Bank of America Corp., are issuing margin calls to clients after the global market drubbing of the past week, forcing investors to choose between either putting up more money or selling some of the securities underlying the loans.
Other banks too sent out margin calls, including U.S. Trust, Morgan Stanley, and Wells Fargo, according to the Journal. With margin calls mucking up the scenario, spooked investors are trying to lower their leverage before they're forced to, and the boom in securities-based lending appears to be over. And the wealth units of the banks that gorged on these loans are likely to see their profits dented.
If that continues, a much crummier thing happens: margin balances reverse. And the last two times they did after a majestic record-breaking spike, the stock market crashed.
For some more technical reasons why another wave to the downside is coming, see an excellent article entitled ''RED ALERT for 2nd CRASH DOWNWAVE'...'' by Clive P. Maund that you can find right here.
In addition to the chaos in the financial world, we are also witnessing a convergence of events during the month of September that is pretty much unprecedented. I know that I have never seen anything quite like it in my lifetime.
Recently, I put together a list of 33 events that we know will happen next month, and you can find that list right here. Instead of repeating the entire article, I just want to highlight a few items from the list'...
September 13 '' The last day of the Shemitah year. During the last two Shemitah cycles, we witnessed record-breaking stock market crashes on the very last day of the Shemitah year (Elul 29 on the Biblical calendar). For example, if you go back to September 17th, 2001 (which was Elul 29 on the Biblical calendar), we witnessed the greatest one day stock market crash in all of U.S. history up until that time. The Dow plunged 684 points, and it was a record that held for exactly seven years until the end of the next Shemitah cycle. On September 29th, 2008 (which was also Elul 29 on the Biblical calendar), the Dow plummeted 777 points, which still today remains the greatest one day stock market crash of all time in the United States. Now we are in another Shemitah year. It began in the fall of 2014, and it ends on September 13th, 2015.
September 15 '' The 70th session of the UN General Assembly begins on this date. It has been widely reported that France plans to introduce a resolution which will give formal UN Security Council recognition to a Palestinian state shortly after the new session begins. Up until now, the U.S. has always been the one blocking such a resolution, but Barack Obama has already indicated that things may be different this time around. It would be extremely difficult to overstate the significance of this.
September 25 to September 27 '' The United Nations launches a brand new ''universal agenda'' for humanity known as ''the 2030 Agenda''.
September 28 '' This is the date for the last of the four blood moons that fall on Biblical festival dates during 2014 and 2015. This blood moon will be a ''supermoon'' and it will be clearly visible from the city of Jerusalem.
If you don't know what a ''supermoon'' is, the following is a pretty good summary of what we should expect to see'...
On the night of 27 to 28 September, the Moon is closest to us at 2.46am, only an hour before it's full. As a result, this supermoon will appear 14 percent bigger in the sky than the Moon at its most distant and smallest, and it should be 30 percent brighter. The Moon will certainly look unusually big and brilliant around 2am. But at 2.07am you'll see a small chunk being nibbled out of its brilliant disc by the Earth's shadow. Sinking deeper and deeper into the darkness, the Moon is totally eclipsed by 3.11am. It remains completely in the shadow of the Earth until 4.23am, when the full Moon gradually begins to emerge.
There has been lots and lots of speculation about other events that could take place during the month of September, but as of right now I cannot prove that any of them will actually happen.
But that doesn't mean that I'm not watching.
If it sounds ominous to you when I say that we are ''entering the danger zone'' during the month of September, that is good, because that is precisely the tone that I am attempting to convey.
When things start completely falling apart in this nation, millions upon millions of Americans will complain that nobody warned them in advance about what was coming.
Well, I am warning you right now.
Get ready.
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Google's Driverless Cars Run Into Problem: Cars With Drivers - NYTimes.com
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 17:13
MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. '-- Google, a leader in efforts to create driverless cars, has run into an odd safety conundrum: Its cars don't make enough mistakes.
Last month, as one of Google's self-driving cars approached a crosswalk, it did what it was supposed to do when it slowed to allow a pedestrian to cross, prompting its ''safety driver'' to apply the brakes. The pedestrian was fine, but not so much Google's car, which was hit from behind by a human-driven sedan.
Google's fleet of autonomous test cars is programmed to follow the letter of the law. But it can be tough to get around if you are a stickler for the rules. One Google car, in a test in 2009, couldn't get through a four-way stop because its sensors kept waiting for other (human) drivers to stop completely and let it go. The human drivers kept inching forward, looking for the advantage '-- paralyzing Google's robot.
It is not just a Google issue. Researchers in the fledgling field of autonomous vehicles say that one of the biggest challenges facing automated cars is blending them into a world in which humans don't behave by the book.
''The real problem is that the car is too safe,'' said Donald Norman, director of the Design Lab at the University of California, San Diego, who studies autonomous vehicles. ''They have to learn to be aggressive in the right amount, and the right amount depends on the culture.''
Traffic wrecks and deaths could well plummet in a world without any drivers, as some researchers predict. But wide use of self-driving cars is still many years away, and testers are still sorting out hypothetical risks '-- like hackers '-- and real world challenges, like what happens when an autonomous car breaks down on the highway.
For now, there is the nearer-term problem of blending robots and humans. Already, cars from several automakers have technology that can warn or even take over for a driver, whether through advanced cruise control or brakes that apply themselves. Uber is working on the self-driving car technology, and Google expanded its tests in July to Austin, Tex.
Google cars regularly take quick, evasive maneuvers or exercise caution in ways that are at once the most cautious approach, but also out of step with the other vehicles on the road.
''It's always going to follow the rules, I mean, almost to a point where human drivers who get in the car and are like 'Why is the car doing that?''' said Tom Supple, a Google safety driver during a recent test drive on the streets near Google's Silicon Valley headquarters.
Since 2009, Google cars have been in 16 crashes, mostly fender-benders, and in every single case, the company says, a human was at fault. This includes the rear-ender crash on Aug. 20, and reported this morning by Google. The Google car slowed for a pedestrian, then the Google employee manually applied the brakes. The car was hit from behind, sending the employee to the emergency room for mild whiplash.
Google's report on the incident adds another twist: While the safety driver did the right thing by applying the brakes, if the autonomous car had been left alone, it might have braked less hard and traveled closer to the crosswalk, giving the car behind a little more room to stop. Would that have prevented the collision? Google says it's impossible to say.
There was a single case in which Google says the company was responsible for a crash. It happened in August 2011, when one of its Google cars collided with another moving vehicle. But, remarkably, the Google car was being piloted at the time by an employee. Another human at fault.
Humans and machines, it seems, are an imperfect mix. Take lane departure technology, which uses a beep or steering-wheel vibration to warn a driver if the car drifts into another lane. A 2012 insurance industry study that surprised researchers found that cars with these systems experienced a slightly higher crash rate than cars without them.
Bill Windsor, a safety expert with Nationwide Insurance, said that drivers who grew irritated by the beep might turn the system off. That highlights a clash between the way humans actually behave and how the cars wrongly interpret that behavior; the car beeps when a driver moves into another lane but, in reality, the human driver is intending to change lanes without having signaled so the driver, irked by the beep, turns the technology off.
Mr. Windsor recently experienced firsthand one of the challenges as sophisticated car technology clashes with actual human behavior. He was on a road trip in his new Volvo, which comes equipped with ''adaptive cruise control.'' The technology causes the car to automatically adapt its speeds when traffic conditions warrant.
But the technology, like Google's car, drives by the book. It leaves what is considered the safe distance between itself and the car ahead. This also happens to be enough space for a car in an adjoining lane to squeeze into, and, Mr. Windsor said, they often tried.
Dmitri Dolgov, head of software for Google's Self-Driving Car Project, said that one thing he had learned from the project was that human drivers needed to be ''less idiotic.''
On a recent outing with New York Times journalists, the Google driverless car took two evasive maneuvers that simultaneously displayed how the car errs on the cautious side, but also how jarring that experience can be. In one maneuver, it swerved sharply in a residential neighborhood to avoid a car that was poorly parked, so much so that the Google sensors couldn't tell if it might pull into traffic.
More jarring for human passengers was a maneuver that the Google car took as it approached a red light in moderate traffic. The laser mounted on top of the driverless car sensed that a vehicle coming the other direction was approaching the red light at higher-than-safe speeds. The Google car immediately jerked to the right in case it had to avoid a collision. In the end, the oncoming car was just doing what human drivers so often do: not approach a red light cautiously enough, though the driver did stop well in time.
Courtney Hohne, a spokeswoman for the Google project, said current testing was devoted to ''smoothing out'' the relationship between the car's software and humans. For instance, at four-way stops, the program lets the car inch forward, as the rest of us might, asserting its turn while looking for signs that it is being allowed to go.
The way humans often deal with these situations is that ''they make eye contact. On the fly, they make agreements about who has the right of way,'' said John Lee, a professor of industrial and systems engineering and expert in driver safety and automation at the University of Wisconsin.
''Where are the eyes in an autonomous vehicle?'' he added.
But Mr. Norman, from the design center in San Diego, after years of urging caution on driverless cars, now welcomes quick adoption because he says other motorists are increasingly distracted by cellphones and other in-car technology.
Witness the experience of Sena Zorlu, a co-founder of a Sunnyvale, Calif., analytics company, who recently saw one of Google's self-driving cars at a red light in Mountain View. She could not resist the temptation to grab her phone and take a picture.
''I don't usually play with my phone while I'm driving. But it was right next to me so I had to seize that opportunity,'' said Ms. Zorlu, who posted the picture to her Instagram feed.
Help desk at State pinged Clinton's private email address
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 17:08
Records Management
Help desk at State pinged Clinton's private email addressBy Adam MazmanianSep 01, 2015An IT worker deep in the bowels of the State Department's Information Resource Management organization stumbled on Hillary Clinton's private email address by accident. He even wrote a note to Clinton about a possible tech glitch, without ever knowing the identity of the famous recipient.
The story is a little two-day hiccup amid the thousands of communications released in an Aug. 31 dump of material from Clinton's private email server.
On Feb. 26, 2010, Clinton Chief of Staff Cheryl Mills noticed that messages to the secretary's private email address -- HDR22@clintonemail.com -- were bouncing back from State's systems. In a note to Clinton, Mills forwarded two error messages from postmaster@state.gov that recorded a temporary failure to send a message to Clinton.
The next day, Clinton herself received an email from Christopher H. Butzgy, who identified himself as a help desk analyst at State. "It has come to my attention that one of our customers has been receiving permanent fatal errors from this address, can you please confirm if you receive this message," he wrote.
Clinton did not reply herself, but forwarded the request to senior aide Huma Abedin, asking, "Do you know what this is?"
It turned out that Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs Judith A. McHale had received error messages after sending emails to Clinton, and informed the help desk. Abedin hypothesized that McHale didn't know that Clinton maintained an email address outside the official State system. The email from the help desk apparently was a friendly heads up done at the urging of the very senior McHale.
"They had no idea it was YOU, just some random address so they emailed. Sorry about that. But regardless, means ur email must be back!" Abedin wrote. "R u getting other messages?" she added.
Clinton replied, "I've gotten some messages from yesterday--how about you?"
"Nothing," was Abedin's reply.
It's not clear how widespread Clinton's email problem was. There is no record in the emails around the time of the problem of any effort made on Clinton's part to contact the tech support staff that managed Clinton's email server.
About the Author
Adam Mazmanian is FCW's senior staff writer, and covers Congress, health IT and governmentwide IT policy. Connect with him on Twitter: @thisismaz.
Why Iran Won't Double-cross Russia
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 17:04
Some speculation is weaving through the airwaves that once its US-imposed sanctions are lifted in several months, Iran will shift its existing allegiance with Russia and instead double-cross the Great Russian Bear by doing gas and oil export deals that directly undercut Russia, especially Gazprom's Turkish Stream gas pipeline aimed at the southern EU states. Were that to occur, perhaps at the same time a Pentagon and CIA backed rearming of the Ukrainian army and supply of massive heavy artillery to launch a far more effective military assault on the eastern Ukraine self-proclaimed republics, the Washington calculation would be a devastating blow to Putin and Russia's economic stability. No matter what dreams may be floating around the Pentagon however, for many reasons an Iranian double-cross is highly unlikely.
Consequences
First it's useful to ask the hypothetical question were Iran to visibly and massively double-cross Russia, what would be the consequences for Teheran? No doubt one or another Iranian politician or businessman has fantasized about the vast riches that will come from the USA and EU once the de facto 36 year state of war with America and Washington's severe economic sanctions are lifted. Business delegations from several European countries have already been in Teheran talking turkey, that is to say potential huge investment in rebuilding Iran's rundown oil sector and other potential projects.
Yet what would be the consequences of Iran's directly undercutting Russia's stragegically significant oil and gas exports with her own vast oil and gas? First of all it would deliver Teheran to the mercy of the same West that imposed the sanctions. Iran's Oil Minister, Bijan Namdar Zanganeh, made an address on Iranian TV on August 26 where he declared Iran's intention to restore her former oil export levels regardless of its effect on OPEC prices. He suggested were Iran's exports to double and cause prices to halve, it would be no problem as the country is accustomed to sanctions and export restraints.
USA and EU sanctions including an unprecedented closing of SWIFT interbank payments access to Iran to block payment for oil exports began at end of 2011 and a second phase in 2012. The consequences were severe. Iran's oil exports dropped from 2.6 million barrels per day to just 1.4 million bpd in 2014. The vacuum was filled by China and other Asian and EU buyers of Iran crude mainly buying from Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Nigeria and Angola according to US Department of Energy EIA data.
The addition of another 1 million barrels to today's glut oil market that is keeping prices well below $50 a barrel rather than the $114 dollars it enjoyed in June 2014, would not be happy news for Moscow. However, that all depends on how long Saudi Arabia and other Arab OPEC producers continue to flood world oil markets in their bid to bankrupt a significant portion of the US shale oil competition. A new World Bank report estimates that by sometime in 2016 Iran could export one million barrels more. In today's market that's a lot.
However, indications are that Iran will not act in a reckless way. Saudi Arabia and OPEC until very recently have always included Iran as a member. It means the Saudis and others who filled the Iran oil export vacuum in the past three years must expect to lose that added recent share gained from Iran's economic distress. The recent Russian negotiations with Saudi Arabia on some $10 billion in trade including purchase of Russian-built nuclear power plants and likely significant purchases by the Saudi Kingdom of Russian sophisticated arms, could put Russia's Vladimir Putin into a unique mediating role between the formerly hostile two oil powers. Iran has nothing to gain by reckless actions creating new enemies when its new American ''friend'' is hardly trustworthy.
The other moderating factor are major new arms agreements and negotiations for delivery of past purchases once sanctions are lifted. Those deals from Teheran are with Moscow so far and visibly not NATO countries of the West.
Russian Missiles go to Iran
On August 19, Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov told Russian media thatIran will receive the S-300 long range surface-to-air missile systems by the end of this year. This was confirmed by Iran's Defense Minister Brigadier General Hossein Dehqan who added the significant note that the missile systems will be upgraded to include all improvements made by Russia since the original deal was frozen by then-President Medvedev on the pretext of UN Security Council sanctions in 2010. The S-300 today is said to be the most potent anti-aircraft missile systems currently deployed, including those from the United States.
In the same press conference Dehqan said Tehran is also in talks with Moscow to buy new Russian fighter jets and ruled out reports on Iran's potential purchase of military aircraft from France.
Commenting on the decision to buy Russian fighter jets, Dehqan stated, ''In the field of fighter jets, we declared our requirements to the Russians and we have made no request in this field to France,'' adding that it was very ''unlikely'' for Iran to engage in military cooperation with France in the current situation.
Poor France. You lose not only the lucrative Mistral sale to Russia but fighter jet sales to Iran. Ever since Sarkozy brought you back into NATO in 2009, reversing the 1966 decision of French President Charles de Gaulle to leave NATO, France has had nothing but problems.
Then at the Russian MAKS-2015 Airshow on August 28, Russian Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Andrei Boginsky announced that Iran has expressed interest in acquiring dozens of Sukhoi Superjet 100 twin-engine regional passenger jet to modernize Iran's commercial fleet which has been frozen since 1979 by US sanctions. Russia offered to permit Iran to localize a part of the production should it purchase the Russian aircraft.
Iran's Vice President, Sorena Sattari, while in Moscow for discussions on restoring credit and trade connections between the two countries, held talks with Russia's Minister of Industry and Trade, Denis Manturov. They discussed at length how to sort out the interaction of the banking systems and open credit lines. ''This would create the necessary basis for the development of trade-economic cooperation between our countries,'' Sattari told the Russian daily,Kommersant. ''The talks were very constructive. We hope for a positive outcome on this issue,'' he noted.
Iran is also interested in using Russian rocket carriers to launch satellites into orbit. Sattari remarked, ''It is important that this is done as part of joint projects. That is, so that we jointly develop and create satellites and cooperate in the sphere of space rocket construction.'' He added that Russia has no competitors in the sphere of space technology.
Good bye European ESA and US NASA fantasies of juicy satellite contracts with Iran too.
In sum, it looks very much like Iran, post-sanctions, plans to deepen its strategic ties to Moscow, not to deliberately make an economic enemy. As OPEC did for decades, there is no reason why Moscow and Teheran cannot come to amicable negotiated market shares for oil and gas amenable to both.
Iran and the Silk Road
Another reason that glues Teheran closer to Eurasia and not to NATO is China's great One Belt, One Road rail and sea lanes infrastructure project. Even before the nuclear agreement, Iran decided to be a founding member and join China's AIIB, the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, a rising rival to the Washington-controlled World Bank.
For China, Iran's geographical location and its topography make her a strategic partner for developing the network of overland infrastructure corridors criss-crossing Eurasia independent of potential confrontation with US Naval presence.
Iran was a part of China's original Silk Road back during the Han dynasty some 2100 years ago. Cooperation between the two countries has a long history. Now since President Xi Jinping's decision to make the land bridges of the Eurasian New Economic Silk Road, spurred in part by the foolish Obama ''Asian Pivot'' military encirclement of China by sea, Iran is regarded in Beijing as an essential partner.
Iran is China's most convenient access route to open waters aside from Russia, and the only east-west/north-south intersection for Central Asian trade. In May 1996, Iran and Turkmenistan forged this missing link by completing a 300-kilometer railway between Mashhad and Tejen. And in December 2014, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, and Iran inaugurated a railway from Uzen (Zhanaozen) to Gorgan and onward to Iran's Persian Gulf ports. For Beijing, Iran's geostrategic value is enhanced by its position astride one of China's two overland bridges to the west. The other bridge skirts the northern coast of the Caspian through Kazakhstan and southwestern Russia near the Caucasus region. Iran is strategic to China's vast infrastructure project as it also connects China with both Europe and the Persian Gulf.
Now, once sanctions are lifted in several months, Iran's long-sought membership in the Eurasian Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), which has been blocked because Iran was under international sanctions, could also be approved as early as next year's annual meeting. The SCO now includes Russia, China, India, Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan with Iran having Observer Status.
Iranian Deputy Economy Minister Massoud Karbasian in a recent Teheran press interview stated that when the Iranian branch of the New Economic Silk Road is completed, Iran will become a transit route for more than 12 million tons of goods a year. Chinese President Xi has estimated that within a decade the One Belt, One Road as it is now officially known by China, will annually create more than $2.5 trillion of trade among the countries along the Silk Road.
For Iran, fully cooperating with this development, led by China and Russia is far more promising than becoming a geopolitical pawn of Washington in economic or any other wars against China and Russia.
On a personal visit to Teheran in 2013, I witnessed another factor that goes very deep in the Iranian soul and hinders trusting any promises out of Washington. I was given a guided tour during my stay of the national museum dedicated to the tragic Iran-Iraq war from 1980 through to 1988. It was one of the bloodiest wars in the entire 20th Century and one of the longest. It also cost Iran more than one million dead. No Iranian is ignorant of the fact that it was Washington that prodded and backed Saddam Hussein to launch that devastating war.
F. William Engdahl is strategic risk consultant and lecturer, he holds a degree in politics from Princeton University and is a best-selling author on oil and geopolitics, exclusively for the online magazine ''New Eastern Outlook''.
Paris climate summit faces funding shortfall, says UN
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 16:40
Addressing delegates, UN climate chief Christiana Figueres said there was insufficent "funding for participation for either the October session, which is already planned, or for the COP."
She was referring to the next scheduled negotiating round, and to the Conference of Parties, which takes place between November 30 and December 11.
"I regret to inform you that we have a deficit now of 1.2 million euros ($1.3 million) just to cover the sessions you have in your calendar," she said, urging "parties in a position to do so, to contribute."
The hotly-anticipated Paris conference has been charged with concluding a historic pact that will, for the first time, commit all nations to reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
The UN-adopted goal is to limit average global warming to two degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) over pre-Industrial Revolution levels.
Diplomats were scheduled to meet in Bonn twice before the year-end UN conference -- on August 31-September 5 and October 19-23 -- to create a workable draft for what will become the Paris pact.
(AFP)
Date created : 2015-08-31
Why the Koch Brothers Will Pour All Their Money Into Making Bernie Sanders President
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 16:34
I have a prediction: Charles and David Koch will soon announce they're backing Bernie Sanders for president.
Here's my logic, which is irrefutable:
We know the Koch brothers, and the organizations they fund, hate corporate welfare more than anything. They hate it!
The top priority of Freedom Partners, which oversees the Koch network of donors, is ''tackling 'rent-seeking,' 'corporate welfare,' and other forms of cronyism.''
Charles Koch himself just told Politico's Mike Allen that ''We have to show that this corporate welfare and cronyism is unjust.'' Sure, said Koch, it makes their friends unhappy, but ''so what? You've got to do the right thing.'' So as Allen wrote, ''Rolling back corporate welfare is one of the top issues Koch is pursuing.''
Similarly, when Koch spoke recently to 450 of his fellow big donors at a recent Koch event in California, he demanded that ''they have to start opposing, rather than promoting, corporate welfare.'' In the Wall Street Journal, Koch wrote that ''I have spent decades opposing cronyism and all political favors, including mandates, subsidies and protective tariffs.''
Cynics might suspect that the Kochs are talking up this part of their stated agenda because it's one of the few things on it that's genuinely popular with Americans '-- unlike most of their other treasured goals, like gutting Social Security and Medicare and radically slashing taxes on billionaires like themselves.
I, however, choose to believe.
And if you hate corporate welfare like I believe the Koch brothers do, it's obvious that Bernie's your candidate. He's been railing against it for decades, and way back in 2002 estimated that it's costing us $125 billion per year. Corporations ''line up for billions in corporate welfare from the federal government,'' Bernie says, because of a ''greed culture.'' And he specifically hates the Export-Import Bank, just like the Kochs.
By contrast, take a look at the presidential candidates whom the Kochs invited to audition for them a few weeks ago, like Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio and Scott Walker. They LOVE corporate welfare. Scott Walker just committed $400 million in taxpayer money to build a new arena for the Milwaukee Bucks. Bush and a business partner got a bailout worth over $4 million in 1990 during the Savings & Loan Crisis, and Bush has said the 2008 Wall Street bailout was ''probably the right thing to do.'' Rubio defends his support for subsidies for sugar farmers in Florida because they somehow protect our national security.
Sure, there are some issues on which Bernie and the Koch brothers disagree. But Bernie's also the best fit with their purported beliefs about ending the war on drugs, gay marriage, and a less militaristic foreign policy. And the Kochs obviously disagree with all the GOP candidates on tons of things too.
The alternative to taking the Koch brothers at their word is to conclude that all the stuff they say that progressives love is just a scam '-- that when it's time to get out their checkbooks to put people in office, the only thing they actually care about is whether those politicians will make them richer. (This is what free market economists call ''revealed preference.'')
But I do take the Koch brothers at their word, so I look forward to seeing them sitting proudly in the front row when Bernie Sanders takes the presidential oath of office on January 20, 2017. Unless they decide to go with Jill Stein.
The WDBJ ''Shooting'', the FCC and the Super Huge Mistaken Penis Fine | American Everyman
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 16:34
by Scott Creighton
An anonymous source sent me a bit of a news tip a little while ago and I thought you might like to see it.
Seems like the FCC, for some strange reason, dug up an old 3 second video image aired by WDJB back on July 12th of 2012, in order to file the largest possible fine against the station in late March of this year. They quietly announced the record-setting fine, $325,000, on their website on March 23rd, 2015'... nearly 3 years after the incident.
On July the 1st of this year, WDBJ-TV Roanoke filed a motion to have the fine reduced or dismissed altogether based on the fact that the accident wasn't intentional. I don't know if that appeal has been ruled on as of yet.
According to the FCC, they have only filed two such fines against media companies previously. One was settled for $15,000 and the other for $37,000. The $325,000 fine is immense by comparison.
The question is: why?
According to the story, WDBJ did a piece for their 6pm news detailing a porn star turned first responder and during the segment, a screen-shot of some porn site that had an image of her was aired for a total of 3 seconds. In the far corner, someone hadn't noticed, the image of a small erect penis on the featured screen-grab. It was obviously a mistake, an oversight probably committed by an intern (they always blame the interns) but it certainly wasn't featured prominently and was hardly noticed.
So why did the FCC come out with the largest possible fine they could muster against the station just a few short months ago, nearly three years after the mistake penis popped up (pardon the pun) on TV?
Let's backup for a second.
When doing an investigation you look for oddities, things that stand out, that don't make sense or things that happen for the first time ever with little to no explanation.
An example would be 9/11 and the steel frame buildings collapsing through the path of greatest resistance due to office fires'... three times. There's a good example. Seems odd, right? Out of place. Especially since this first time, only time kind of event happened three times that day and never before and never since.
Called a red flag.
Now let's look at the WDBJ shooting event.
Did you guys know it is extremely rare for a reporter to be shot during a story in the United States by someone who had just ''gone crazy''? In fact, it's never happened.
Reporters get killed very rarely but when they do it's almost ALWAYS by some right-wing fascist fanatic who does it for political purposes.
Should I repeat that?
The most recent example of this is Robert Stevens of the Sun who was killed in early Oct. 2001 because he was writing stuff that made the pending Patriot Act look like a fascist takeover of government. So, some ''terrorist'' sent him some anthrax and killed him. They tried to make it look like Saddam Hussein did it. Turns out it was anthrax from a US military contractor. Go figure.
From 1970 through 2001 there was a total of 14 journalists who were killed in the US but they were all killed by right-wing fanatics in order to silence them when they were writing about left-wing issues by left-wing journos.
Of course, there is Bill Cooper who was also a journalist. He was shot in the back, while unarmed, running for his front door, by law enforcement officers and left to bleed to death while they stood around preventing the paramedics from helping him.
Where are the #BlackLivesMatter folks on that topic I wonder. Oh yeah, Bill wasn't black. I guess he doesn't matter.
Heck, Bill didn't even rate a mention on the Wiki page about journalists being killed even though he was such a good journalist, he predicted 9/11 a month before it happened. I guess #ConspiracyTheoristLivesDontMatter is a thing these days.
But I digress.
My point is, it is MORE than rare for a journalist to be shot dead in the streets of the United States by some random ''crazy person'' for no apparent reason.
THERE IS ALWAYS A POLITICAL MOTIVATION BEHIND KILLING JOURNALISTS.
Should I repeat that? Or do I need to explain Robert Stevens, Bill Cooper and all the journalists killed by RIGHT WING FASCISTS again?
THERE IS ALWAYS A POLITICAL MOTIVATION BEHIND KILLING JOURNALISTS.
So, I think it's fair too say the shooting of Alison Parker and Adam Ward stands out like a sore thumb in this regard.
Now, let's add in the RECORD SETTING, completely out of line FINE that was imposed on WDBJ a few months ago relating to some tiny little penis no one actually saw, THREE YEARS AGO.
And of course the PENDING appeal of that station-crippling fine.
Yet another odd, seemingly misplaced facet of this story.
Of all the TV stations in this country over the years, how is it that the one that just happens to have this event unfold in such a contrived manner right on time for the continuation of Obama's gun-grabbing agenda'... also just happens to be the one facing the largest fine of it's kind in FCC history?
What are the odds of that you think, these two firsts taking place within a few months of each other?
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Filed under: American Gladio, Scott Creighton, WDBJ Shooting
Uber hires two security researchers to improve car technology - News - 1330 WHBL Sheboygan's News Radio
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 16:33
Friday, August 28, 2015 2:36 p.m. CDT
By Joseph Menn and Heather Somerville
SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Uber Technologies Inc [UBER.UL] has hired two top vehicle security researchers, the company said on Friday, high-profile additions that come as the ride-hailing service ramps up its work on technology for self-driving cars.
Charlie Miller, who had been working at Twitter Inc, and Chris Valasek, who worked at security firm IOActive, have resigned from their jobs and will join Uber next week.
Miller and Valasek won wide attention this month after demonstrating that they could hack into a moving Jeep.
Uber said that Miller and Valasek will join the company's Advanced Technologies Center, a research laboratory Uber opened in Pittsburgh in February and staffed with dozens of autonomous vehicle experts hired away from Carnegie Mellon University.
An Uber spokeswoman said Miller and Valasek will work with the company's top security officers "to continue building out a world-class safety and security program at Uber."
Raffi Krikorian, who heads Uber's Advanced Technologies Center, tweeted a welcome to the duo on Friday.
Miller tweeted that he was looking forward to starting his new job on Tuesday. Valasek tweeted that his last day at IOActive will be Monday.
As Uber plunges more deeply into developing or adapting self-driving cars, Miller and Valasek could help the company make that technology more secure.
Uber envisions autonomous cars that could someday replace its hundreds of thousands of contract drivers. The San Francisco company has gone to top-tier universities and research centers to build up this capability.
Uber on Tuesday announced a partnership with the University of Arizona, offering the school grant money to fund research into the mapping and safety technology needed for autonomous vehicles, which Uber will test on the streets of Tucson, Arizona.
This partnership follows the more tumultuous effort earlier this year at Carnegie Mellon University that resulted in Uber hiring away more than 40 of its top scientists and researchers, leaving one of the world's top robotics research institutions reeling.
And in March, Uber bought digital mapping firm deCarta, a San Jose, California-based company whose technology offers search and turn-by-turn directions.
Miller and Valasek's Jeep efforts, which were coordinated with manufacturer Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV, prompted the first vehicle recall to protect drivers from possible malicious hacking.
FCA USA LLC recalled 1.4 million vehicles to install software intended to prevent hackers from emulating the experiment, which used the cellular network to enter the entertainment system and then win control of the engine, brakes and steering.
(Reporting by Joseph Menn and Heather Somerville; Additional reporting by Jim Finkle; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)
US-supported Saudi-led coalition air strikes kill more civilians
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 14:21
"An air strike by warplanes from a Saudi-led coalition, which said it targeted a bomb-making factory, killed 36 civilians working at a bottling plant in the northern Yemeni province of Hajjah on Sunday, residents said. In another air raid on the capital Sanaa, residents said four civilians were killed when a bomb hit their house near a military base in the south of the city." "The process of recovering the bodies is finished now. The corpses of 36 workers, many of them burnt or in pieces, were pulled out after an air strike hit the plant this morning," resident Issa Ahmed told Reuters by phone from the site in Hajjah."
Curry Called It!!! RED BOOK PREDICTION: Minnesota Islamist on Terror List Gets Commercial Driver's License to Drive Semi-Trucks - The Gateway Pundit : inthemorning
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 12:44
What could go wrong?Islamist Amir Meshal was just given his commercial driver's license to drive semi-trucks.
Amir Meshal was kicked out his Bloomington mosque after he was caught promoting radical Islam.
Amir Meshal attended a terrorist training camp in Africa.
FOX 9 reported, via IJ Review:
A Minnesota man, who Homeland Security identifies as a terror suspect who is on the ''No Fly'' list, now has his Class A commercial license, which will allow him to drive semi-trucks.
The FOX 9 Investigators revealed last May that Amir Meshal was attempting to get his Class A license from a Twin Cities truck driving school. The $4,000 tuition was paid for through the state workforce program.
The Minnesota Department of Public Safety confirms he was granted the license after passing a road test on August 8. A spokesperson said Meshal has also applied for a school bus endorsement, pending the outcome of a criminal background check.
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Obama To Rename Continent's Highest Peak From Mount McKinley To Denali : The Two-Way : NPR
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 11:29
President Obama is renaming Alaska's Mount McKinley in an effort to strengthen cooperation between the government and Alaska Native tribes. The peak is returning to its traditional name, Denali. Al Grillo/APhide caption
itoggle caption Al Grillo/APPresident Obama is renaming Alaska's Mount McKinley in an effort to strengthen cooperation between the government and Alaska Native tribes. The peak is returning to its traditional name, Denali.
Al Grillo/APThe White House announced Sunday that President Obama is changing the name of North America's highest peak.
Mount McKinley '-- named after William McKinley, the 25th president, who served in the White House until his assassination in 1901 '-- is returning to its traditional Alaska Native name, Denali.
Obama will make a public announcement of the name change in Anchorage Monday, during a three-day visit to Alaska.
As Alaska's Newsminer reports:
"The mountain, which has been officially named after the 25th president of the United States since 1917, will now be recognized by the U.S. Board of Geographic [N]ames by its original Koyukon Athabascan name."
A statement by the White House says the designation "recognizes the sacred status of Denali" to Alaska natives going back generations:
"In 1896, a prospector emerged from exploring the mountains of central Alaska and received news that William McKinley had been nominated as a candidate for President of the United States. In a show of support, the prospector declared the tallest peak of the Alaska Range as "Mt. McKinley"'--and the name stuck.
"McKinley became our 25th President, and was tragically assassinated just six months into his second term. But he never set foot in Alaska'--and for centuries, the mountain that rises some 20,000 feet above sea level, the tallest on the North American continent, had been known by another name'--Denali. Generally believed to be central to the Athabascan creation story, Denali is a site of significant cultural importance to many Alaska Natives. The name "Denali" has been used for many years and is widely used across the state today."
Efforts to change the peak's name back to Denali date back to 1975. The Washington Post reports that Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) recently added language in a spending bill that would reestablish the mountain's original name.
The broader purpose of the of the president's trip to the nation's 49th state is to mount an aggressive call to action to fight climate change. The trip, which promises to utilize breath-taking backdrops, will shine light on melting glaciers and rising sea levels.
As CNN reports:
"All week long, Obama will try to call attention to Alaska as a kind of climate change ground zero. Whether it's a hike on a melting glacier near the town of Seward or his visit with fisherman in the remote coastal village of Dillingham, the President wants a distracted public to see the jarring effects of global warming through his own eyes."
The White House cited the authority of Interior Secretary Sally Jewell to change the name back to Denali. Jewell issued a secretarial order and signed it late last week.
Mobile App Fraud Study | Forensiq
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 10:48
Forensiq's investigative look into mobile device hijacking
Take Part in Jeff Skoll's Salvation | The Feral Yawp
Mon, 31 Aug 2015 21:55
I do not like Jeff Skoll. I do not like any interviews I read featuring him and I do not like the syrupy way the media talks about him. I do not like the idea of a messiah, much less one who made it big in Silicon Valley and who throws around money when not giving TED talks. Nobody seems to have a single negative thing to say about Jeff Skoll, so I guess it is up to me. Let me be absolutely clear: this is a smear piece but also one with references. This is a bit long-winded, but hopefully it comes full circle by the end, but first some context.
TakePart
My first introduction to the world of Skoll-duggery came in the form of a precious little news outlet called ''TakePart''. In my daily perusing of news stories I would come across these gems which just made me shake my head. Titles such as: ''This Year's Wildfires May Change Western Forests Forever'--and Not for the Good''. I cannot help but point out the stunningly simple point that every change in the world changes everything forever. Realizing that is essentially experiencing life 101. Here is another pearl showing a stunning lack of hindsight for the eugenicist social Darwinism in regards to Africa's population: ''Defuse Africa's Population Bomb to Save Its Elephants, Lions, and Rhinos''. There is no regard for the empirical cruelty exercised on the African population in the 1930's by the European progressive cutting edge, which sadly is not just a metaphorical term. It is just offensively ignorant. Last but not least, the articles even stray sometimes into complete cultural blindness: ''What Do Horses and Beavers Have in Common? They May Both Be in Your Burger''. Beaver was a staple in Canada and the frontier for years, and horse is eaten in many countries around the world. If it is good enough for them, then it is certainly good enough for us. The article even absurdly goes on to make allusions to Upton Sinclair's well written but ultimately thick propagandistic pamphlet ''The Jungle.'' Apparently now a few scraps of horse meat in your burger is akin to losing your toes to a pickling vat.
Needless to say, the headlines wore on me, and finally I decided to do a little looking and find out who was responsible for constantly invading my newsfeeds with spastic gyrations over every slight change in climate and social micro-aggression. That is when I learned about Jeff Skoll. I am sure most people are more public-figure-literate than I and have seen more TED talks, but I went into it cold. He is a rich SOB, the founder of Ebay who retired with multi-billions at 36. This still did not explain why he was polluting my reading material (a choice of words which would no doubt throw him into conniptions). With wealth beyond bounds and a midlife crisis approaching, Skoll decided it was time to go about saving the world. One way he approached this was in creating TakePart, a news outlet that is structurally designed for activism. Each article comes with a petition included or some other way to take ''action''. Interestingly, TakePart is only a fragment of a much larger media conglomerate founded by Skoll: Participant Media.
Participant Media
The main method that Skoll uses for saving the world is disseminating his message through mass media. After exiting Ebay he founded Participant Media which funds films and television documentaries. To give a few examples: ''An Inconvenient Truth'', ''99% The Occupy Wall street Collaborative Film'', ''Darfur Now'', ''Food Inc.'', and ''Merchants of Doubt.'' Sound familiar? They should. All these movies were accompanied by viral online movements and even real-world activism. Skoll knows this because he creates it via his media outlets. He calls them ''Action Campaigns''. There is no doubt that he actually cares about these issues. I am not trying to claim that he is an overly insidious individual, but there are two sides to this particular approach. To one extent, yes, he is increasing awareness about issues, but at the same time these ''Action Campaigns'' certainly don't hurt the bottom line of these films once they are released. I don't want to cry ''vertical integration'', but when you own news outlets and produce films under the same umbrella, then things get a little, Shall we say, incestuous. The incest only begins here though, and the really interesting information comes in the form of his world saving and oddly insidious sounding ''Skoll Global Threats Fund.''
Chairman of The Board
Skoll's Global threats group touts the typical list of world issues: Climate Change, Pandemics, Water Security, Nuclear Proliferation, and Middle East Conflict. Arguably water security could go under climate change but that is just a quibble; the more threats the better, right? They state their approach as: ''We work proactively to find, initiate, or co-create breakthrough ideas and/or activities that we believe will have large-scale impact, either directly or indirectly.'' At least they are honest in admitting that these are the issues that they merely ''believe'' to have the most need for immediate action. The whole approach is very Silicon Valley with emphasis on connectivity: ''Enable access to and promote transparency in data, processes, and financial flows around global threats to facilitate informed decision making,'' and ''Create new coalitions and facilitate better coordination of actors of all kinds across multiple sectors. . .'' They even have their site set up so that every time I copy-paste, it leaves a delightful little message pushing people to get more info. Here's an example: ''Promote better understanding of uncertainty and risk at every level of discourse.'' '' See more at: http://www.skollglobalthreats.org/about-us/mission-and-approach/#sthash.vAqNLG51.dpuf Wow! Thanks Skoll! Now all you productive social media drones can check out all the additional information and tweet like crazy. How nice of him.
Skoll has obviously come to the conclusion that people are seeking to destroy themselves through ignorance, and only if enough of his brand of information is out there can we save the world. First he releases films predicting apocalyptic demise and the uses social media to get people on board, making his brand of the future a cultural mainstay. Then he reaches out his hand to lead us into his perfect future. I'm pretty sure that's exactly how revivalist preachers get all those sinners baptized, by shouting about their sins, their lying and cheating, their carbon footprint and nationalism that will lead to a fiery end (just look at the California drought!). But no poor sinners, that does not have to be your end. Believe in Skoll and your burdens will be light. Kind of uncanny when you take things to their logical conclusions. So now we've seen the messiah in a more honest light, and I believe it's time to look at his disciples: the board of directors of The Skoll Global Threats Fund.
Larry Brilliant, The Healer
Larry seems like a decent sort of guy, and I have no doubt that he is. His nonprofits combat smallpox and curable blindness, and he has worked for the WHO and Google. The last combination is likely why he was the founding chair of the National Bio-Surveillance Advisory Subcommittee which in no way sounds creepy in the least bit. How can we know what they want though? Well, luckily their reports to the CDC fall under public domain, so not much digging is required.
In their final report, dated April 2011, they make a number of interesting advisements to the CDC. The first of which is: ''Establish a robust mechanism for federal policy oversight and coordination, through the Executive Office of the President with the National Security Staff as the lead entity for USG domestic and international (global) biosurveillance programs and activities.'' Ah, lovely, so they recommended that the NSA be responsible for biosurveillance. I find it interesting that Skoll's boy Larry would want that, since the grassroots Occupy and ''social justice'' movements to which they play generous uncle are so anti-NSA. I'm sensing some cognitive dissonance. Here's another gem: ''Incentivizing Innovation: Many innovative efforts in data/information mining originate in the private sector. Incentives and funding will be critical to focusing these efforts on biosurveillance.'' The richness of this is almost too much for me. An advisory committee headed up by a Silicon Valley multi-millionaire is suggesting that the government incentivize (pay) Silicon Valley to give them information that people give freely online. That's the equivalent of hiring someone to tell you that you need to pay them. Hilarious. They go on and on recommending needs for new algorithms and networking. Who do they think will be contracted by the government to provide this infrastructure? Well, Silicon Valley of course.
Larry Brilliant is also responsible for founding an internet group called The Well, and it has a very high opinion of itself. The website touts bold and sometimes disturbing claims such as: ''The WELL is a cherished destination for conversation and discussion'', ''it's been described as 'the world's most influential online community,''' and, ''[it] almost invisibly influences modern culture.'' If this is not enough, they go on to say that they are, ''one of the most noted 'walled gardens' in the world.'' I wanted to sign up for The Well because I was curious and I don't hear enough pompous sanctimonious arrogance already in my life, but sadly they charge a flat rate of $100 a year to sign up. Although there are trial offers, that fact kind of took the wind out of my sails. I find it very interesting that these 'save the world' types who tout the liberation of free information have their own ''walled garden'' that can't be entered without a fee. Of course it makes sense, since Skoll is the savior of the world, and god traditionally is a fan of walled gardens. I guess a spade is a spade.
Annie Maxwell, The Politician
Annie Maxwell is probably the least interesting of the disciples because she has spent so much time in government. This means that I need not say much more, aside from the fact that she was part of a special envoy for tsunami recovery headed by bill Clinton and worked in the office of Joe Biden. She focused her time in the VP's office working on the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act which led to the mortgage credit boom and then resulted in the recession which we still haven't recovered from. Economics aside, the mortgage credit boom did little good for individual communities. An enlightening Vox article from 2012 by economist Amine Ouazad points out that the act actually contributed to racial segregation in the US. He writes:
''There is also a general equilibrium effect. Richer households can also borrow more, meaning they have more financial means to outbid poorer household in desirable neighbourhood[s]. The corresponding price increase can have the consequence of pricing minorities out of many neighbourhoods despite their better access to credit.''
He also goes on to point out:
''Hispanic families have used the easier access to credit to buy houses in predominantly Hispanic neighbourhoods with the consequence of enrolling their children in schools with fewer black peers, and more Hispanic and white peers. We estimate that, because of the credit boom, black students in 2006 had 2% fewer Hispanic peers; that is about 18 fewer Hispanic students.''
I can feel the love, can you? Why don't we join a perfectly represented racial choir and offer to buy the world a coke. Sometimes, however, facts can be a little too inconvenient for the utopian pipe-dream.
Sally Osberg, The Builder
Next is Sally Osberg, the president and CEO of the Skoll Foundation. She spends her time ''Identifying and supporting innovators pioneering scalable solutions to global challenges''. One of those pioneers comes in the form of ''Partners for Sustainable Development'', a Palestinian NGO which prepares youth for a life in global society and encourages grass roots activism. On the face of it, it is innocent enough, but things are never that simple. The chairman, Nazef Housseini, is the chief technology and communications officer for Consolidated Contractors Company, the largest construction firm in the Middle East. If we recall recent and current Middle East events, there is a fair amount of revolution and overall destruction of infrastructure in Egypt, Libya, Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, and the list goes on. Once things next begin to stabilize, the largest construction company in the region is set to make a killing, even if there is more destruction, one might imagine especially if there is more destruction. When you're in bed with that company, then suddenly being very concerned with the Middle East becomes less of a sacrifice and more of a benefit. Just remember, these Skoll types were all on board with the Arab Spring, which has led to the most infrastructure destruction in the Middle East in recent memory.
It gets even more interesting. In an interview of the Area Manager of Consolidated Contractor's Company Bassam Daher, the man in charge of Egypt, Sudan, and Libya, he reveals that they had just finished a headquarters for HSBC earlier this month. For those not familiar, HSBC is a massive multinational financial services company based out of London UK. If anyone recalls, back in 2012 HSBC was investigated for turning a blind eye to and even assisting in money laundering for Mexican drug cartels and terrorist groups. A 2012 Reuters article features a compliance officer named Everett Stern who alerted the company to transactions linked to Hamas and Hezbollah, but ultimately his concerns were dismissed. I guess sally Osberg should be a little more careful which ''innovaters'' she decides to support.
James G.B. DeMartini III, The Kingmaker
The last disciple of the world's savior's poverty stricken and self-sacrificing lot is James DeMartini, a man who I imagine wants for nothing. He is the managing partner of Seiler LLP, a Silicon Valley accounting firm which is deeply concerned about the environment, and I imagine deeply concerned about the healthy subsidies passed on to them by the current administration. It certainly helps one do the right thing when it pays oh-so-well. DeMartini served on the board of directors of Mid-Peninsula Bank from 1999 to 2004. It is a member of the Greater Bay Bancorp Group, which merged with Wells Fargo in 2007. This was right around the time Wells Fargo became designated ''too big to fail''. That alone should give some insight into DeMartini's past business environment and show, to some extent, how ironic it is that he is on a board of a group that is out to save the world.
That may be thin to some, but Demartini has a little more under his hat, which I imagine is probably a fedora with a feather in it which he doffs while swinging his gold watch on a chain. In a 2012 New York Times article about the secrecy and suspicious dealings surrounding Super Pacs in the last election, Nicholas Confessore and Michael Lou wrote:
''Even donors who chose not to give via nonprofit affiliates can find ways to guard their identities by giving through a limited liability corporation or other entity that is hard to trace. For example, Restore Our Future received a $250,000 contribution last August from ''Glenbrook L.L.C.,'' which listed an address on Lagoon Drive in Redwood City, Calif. The suite number provided on Federal Election Commission records matches one occupied by a certified public accounting firm, Seiler L.L.P. But an official with the firm told a reporter who went to the address that it could not discuss its clients.''
As someone who sees campaign finance reform as something much needed in this country, this makes Demartini no better than the money launderers at HSBC.
The Bones of Skoll
The thing about writing a hit piece on Jeff Skoll is that it's akin to shadow boxing. Like all wealthy philanthropists, his carefully designed cult of personality will always be his face in the media. Every interview reads quite similarly: he is very concerned about the whole world, he wants to combine social improvement with viable business models, he loves social activism. So the best I can do really on the man himself is try to get inside his head, the head of the person behind the enterprise that is Jeff Skoll the idea.
Perhaps the best place to start is an interview he gave with Arianna Huffington in 2012. Her delight at speaking to him is obvious. Her questions are all trying to draw out his seemingly all-encompassing empathy for the entire globe. To call her questions softball would be an insult to the sport. As a Silicon Valley guy, he is very much into the view that humanity can become transcendent through complete amalgamation and this is very clear in one of his answers: ''I think for the older generation, they tend to focus more on traditional things, like putting up a wing in a hospital or doing health research or helping fund new kinds of schools. All those things are great, but for the younger generation I think there's more of an inclination to look more globally.'' No surprise there, but he goes on to make his stance even clearer: ''When I think of the major threats in the world, long term, we do have the time and the ability to solve them '-- even the most intractable threats.'' I believe this statement puts him firmly in the camp of solutionists, the very millennial camp which believes all problems no matter how small can eventually be addressed through information sharing and technology. I take issue with this view because it is so blind to the practicality of everyday life. Saying that Skoll, in transcending local issues, has also cheated himself out of having any clear view of the average perspective would not be an unfair claim. He is so very concerned with the long term, but, as John Maynard Keynes said: ''In the long run we are all dead.'' Solutionism also falls prey to its own vision of the future, much like the futurists. Their Imagined vision of the future were innovative and fascinating but for the most part wrong. Truly there is no future, merely the disproven vision which becomes the present.
This sort of world-altering-futurism sense of morality becomes more obvious in some of Skoll's individual interventions around the world. Earlier this year the One Voice group which strove to throw a wrench in Benjamin Netanyahu's re-election campaign was strongly funded by Skoll. Now, I am no fan of Israel's prime minister, but Skoll's funding of the group looks an awful lot like America's many misguided attempts at regime change all across the world. For a man who says of politics: ''Maybe the next frontier is figuring out how to have a political environment that isn't so corrosive and toxic.'' He seems to play by similar rules. He also isn't above blatant propaganda. In a piece by Inside Philanthropy, Michael Gentilucci reveals: ''Skoll is institutionalizing the link between his media work and his philanthropy with a $10 million donation to the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television to create the Skoll Center for Social Impact Entertainment.'' He later quotes Skoll himself who said of the program: ''This new center at UCLA TFT is an extension of [my] vision, with the goal of empowering a new generation and elevating storytelling as a tool to create impact and empower people to connect to the social issues which can have a profound impact on our world.'' If I need to make this clear: Jeff Scoll is buying educational stock with money in order to turn art (theater) into propaganda for his own causes. If the Kock brothers did something like this so publicly and flaunted it, then the media would be up in arms and rightfully so. UCLA is heavily subsidized like any state university, yet it is allowing a private sector ideologue buy intellectual stock in how their students are educated. This is not a new concept, but that does not make it any less disturbing. It is also very megalomaniacal. Skoll is so convinced of his own inherent rightness that he is investing in re-educating future people along the lines of his moral superiority.
Things get even stranger when Skoll reveals his philosophical inspiration for many of his aims and beliefs in a 2010 graduation speech at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. At one point he says: ''When I was growing up, I admired writers whose stories made the world seem a very small and interconnected place, writers like Ayn Rand, George Orwell and Aldous Huxley. My dream was to tell stories that would change the world.'' This is where Skoll begins to come in a little clearer. Notice how he says nothing of the satire and dystopian natures of Huxley and Orwell's works. He simply points to the setting and the interconnectedness as a good thing. I find that rather chilling, since both authors' penned works showing the danger of the devaluation of individual worth in favor of collective technocratic assimilation. From that statement he seems to be implying that he can bring about an empathetic version of a Brave New World. I don't know about you, but to me that sounds like a conceit, something with which Skoll is entirely unfamiliar.
To bring this around and offer a bit of an ironical conclusion, I would like to offer a quotation from Aldous Huxley himself, something said in a speech at none other than UCLA Berkely in 1962 in a presentation called ''The Ultimate Revolution''. Here it is:
''I think that insofar as dictators become more and more scientific, more and more concerned with the technically perfect, perfectly running society, they will be more and more interested in the kind of techniques which I imagined and described from existing realities in BNW. So that, it seems to me then, that this ultimate revolution is not really very far away, that we, already a number of techniques for bringing about this kind of control are here, and it remains to be seen when and where and by whom they will first be applied in any large scale.''
He goes on to say later:
''This is, I say, in this field of pure persuasion, I think we do know much more than we did in the past, and obviously we now have mechanisms for multiplying the demagogues voice and image in a quite hallucinatory way, I mean, the TV and radio . . . The ancient demagogue could only appeal to as many people as his voice could reach by yelling at his utmost, but the modern demagogue could touch literally millions at a time, and of course by the multiplication of his image he can produce this kind of hallucinatory effect which is of enormous hypnotic and suggestive importance.''
In the context of the presentation Huxley is presenting these ideas and methods as ultimately very dangerous, yet Skoll must see this quote as a hopeful dream, which means that he really does not know Huxley at all, that he does not understand social satire, or perhaps that he does not share the author's healthy concern about absolute control. How can he be so assured of his rightness and chances of success when even his own inspirations are set against his methods, his stacking of news cinema and propagandistic education?
I made allusions earlier to Skoll being a sort of messianic religious figure and I firmly believe that he is. In that way I guess this smear piece has failed. Aside from the questionable involvements of his Board of directors and his own questionable methods of propagating his moral agenda there is no smoking gun. History has yet to reveal the ends of Skoll's means, so now I can only take issue with the latter. You either believe in him or you do not, and he causes me enough discomfort that I cannot keep the faith. I cannot believe in a messiah that preaches empathy without sacrifice, one that bemoans power structures yet, according to Gentilucci: ''for all the giving he's done so far, Jeff Skoll is actually richer now than he was a few years ago, with a fortune estimated at $3.9 billion.'' Though I suppose that's where the Ayn Rand comes into play.
A Church In Ruins
None of this information I dug up directly ties objectively negatively back to Jeff Skoll, but I think it says a great deal about the company he keeps. When you look into the machinations of the board of directors of The Skoll Global Threats Fund, it makes absolute sense that they can live so comfortably while saving the world. In a way, writing this has been cathartic. Whenever I see TakePart's headlines in my list of news articles I will still shake my head. But now I think I'll smile too. Those who read it eat of what he offers, and they live out the ecstasy of his ritual, they camp out in rallies and rage against that great immense force which seeks to tear the world apart. In the meanwhile, the Board of directors will continue to jet around the world and give so much while somehow losing nothing. Skoll fed them their religion. Through his documentaries and NGOs he said: ''This is the world, and I will show you how to save it.'' And they try, they really do, and like liturgy they repeat his words. I am unsure if they will ever understand Skoll's fundamental conceit, the ignorance of an ancient bit of wisdom, that he and his and our society has been made of wealth and conflict, and everything that is evolved is involved and nothing can rise higher than its source.
Links below.
Sources:
Global Threats:
http://www.skollglobalthreats.org/about-us/board-of-directors/
Larry Brilliant:
http://www.cdc.gov/about/pdf/advisory/nbasfinalreport_april2011.pdf
http://www.well.com/aboutwell.html
Annie Maxwell:
http://www.voxeu.org/article/did-mortgage-credit-boom-contribute-decline-us-racial-segregation
Sally Osberg:
http://psdpal.org/
Consolidated Contractors and HSBC:
http://www.marcopolis.net/consolidated-contractors-company-ccc-and-their-projects-in-egypt.htm
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/07/14/us-hsbc-compliance-delaware-idUSBRE86C18H20120714
James DeMartini:
http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/wells-fargo-greater-bay-bancorp-agree-to-merge-57936667.html
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/02/us/politics/super-pac-filings-show-power-and-secrecy.html?_r=1
Jeff Skoll:
http://ssir.org/articles/entry/jeff_skoll
http://www.insidephilanthropy.com/tech-philanthropy/2014/11/19/jeff-skoll-makes-a-new-kind-of-bet-on-storytelling-with-a-gi.html
http://www.frontpagemag.com/point/250444/organization-behind-anti-netanyahu-campaign-got-daniel-greenfield
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/arianna-huffington/jeff-skoll-order-of-canada_b_1544322.html
https://www.gsb.stanford.edu/stanford-gsb-experience/news-history/2010-graduation-speech-jeffrey-skoll-mba-95
Huxley:
https://archive.org/details/AldousHuxley-TheUltimateRevolution
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Eight Terminal Utilities Every OS X Command Line User Should Know · mitchchn.me
Mon, 31 Aug 2015 14:45
The OS X Terminal opens up a world of powerful UNIX utilities and scripts. If you're migrating from Linux, you'll find many familiar commands work the way you expect. But power users often aren't aware that OS X comes with a number of its own text-based utilities not found on any other operating system. Learning about these Mac-only programs can make you more productive on the command line and help you bridge the gap between UNIX and your Mac.
Update: Thanks to reader feedback, I've written about a few more commands in a follow-up post: (And eight hundred more).
1. openopen opens files, directories and applications. Exciting, right? But it really does come in handy as a command-line double-click. For instance, typing:
$ open /Applications/Safari.app/'...will launch Safari as if you had double-clicked its icon in the Finder.
If you point open at a file instead, it will try to load the file with its associated GUI application. open screenshot.png on an image will open that image in Preview. You can set the -a flag to choose the app yourself, or -e to open the file for editing in TextEdit.
Running open on a directory will take you straight to that directory in a Finder window. This is especially useful for bringing up the current directory by typing open .
Remember that the integration between Finder and Terminal goes both ways '' if you drag a file from Finder into a Terminal window, its full path gets pasted into the command line.
2. pbcopy and pbpasteThese two commands let you copy and paste text from the command line. Of course, you could also just use your mouse'--but the real power of pbcopy and pbpaste comes from the fact that they're UNIX commands, and that means they benefit from piping, redirection, and the ability to be in scripts in conjunction with other commands. Typing:
$ ls ~ | pbcopy'...will copy a list of files in your home directory to the OS X clipboard. You can easily capture the contents of a file:
$ pbcopy < >..or do something crazier. This hacked-up script will grab the link of the latest Google doodle and copy it to your clipboard.
$ curl http://www.google.com/doodles#oodles/archive | grep -A5 'latest-doodle on' | grep 'img src' | sed s/.*'
Pousti Plastic Surgery | Tom J. Pousti, MD FACS
Mon, 31 Aug 2015 05:08
Dr. Pousti is a double board certified Plastic Surgeon with over 20 years of extensive medical and surgical training, specializing in Reconstructive and Cosmetic Plastic Surgery. Located in San Diego, Pousti Plastic Surgery is dedicated to restoring appearance, self-esteem, function and quality of life to his patients.
I can't tell you how pleasant & truly life-changing my experience was. I'm so blessed to find the best surgical team in San Diego by far.~ Actual Patient

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Agenda 2030

NBC Treks to Arctic Alaska to Find ‘America’s First Climate Change Refugees’ ‘Living in Fear’.mp3
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Obama-joke stealer-Spawn on me.mp3

Caliphate!

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Eugenics

Margaret Sanger-diseased and delinquwnts into the world = sin.mp3

F-Russia

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Hillary

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JCD Clips

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san anyonio part one ABC.mp3
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LGBBTQQIAAP

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Migrants

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Sovereign Citizens

CNN Spotlights 'Troubling Wave of Police Deaths' In Recent Weeks.mp3
SPLC-1-video of Cht Bob Paudert Arkansas PD SOVEREIGN CITIZENS.mp3
SPLC-2-video of explaining SOVEREIGN CITIZENS.mp3
SPLC-3-FINAL-video bumper stickers and UCC SOVEREIGN CITIZENS.mp3
START_UnderstandingLawEnforcementIntelligenceProcesses_July2014.pdf

VMA's

Taylor Swift- ‘I’m Just Happy … We Live in a World Where Boys Can Play Princesses and Girls Can Play Soldiers’.mp3
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