• DamianTV's Avatar
    Today, 08:26 AM
    http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2019/june/26/ny-times-admits-it-sends-stories-to-us-government-for-approval-before-publication/ Them - "We dont lie." Us - "Are you lying now?" Them - "No, of course not."
    0 replies | 5 view(s)
  • DamianTV's Avatar
    Today, 08:18 AM
    https://science.slashdot.org/story/19/06/25/2041217/smartphones-and-fitness-trackers-are-being-used-to-gauge-employee-performance Then AI fires you. Then AI fires your friends. Then AI recommends all your jobs should be done by robots. What could possibly go wrong?
    2 replies | 25 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Today, 01:01 AM
    Over and above the petty party squabbling that characterises the politics of Iraq’s semi-autonomous northern region of Kurdistan, it can safely be conjectured that at least two groups of people were delighted at the appointment of Masrour Barzani on 11 June as prime minister of the region’s government (the KRG): the Barzanis and the Russians. The Barzanis had three reasons for jubilation: Masrour was now prime minister, his cousin, Nechirvan was president, and the former president – and father of Masrour – Masoud Barzani remains the driving power behind the throne. The Russians had just one reason – but a big one – for celebration: the Barzani family is “highly accommodating to any suggestion that is good for the Barzani family,” as one senior source who works closely with Iraq’s Oil Ministry told Oilprice.com last week. “This means it’s still open season for Russia in Kurdistan, which is perhaps the last truly under-developed oil and gas frontier in the Middle East,” he added. An indication of the Barzani’s historical appeal to Russia is that under the presidency of Masoud Barzani from 2005 to 2017 the family’s net worth increased from the negligible amount that any U.S. middle office manager might have in the bank to just under US$50 billion, according to various estimates. All of this was done whilst the official base salary for the president of the KRG was between US$2095 and US$2515 per month, which means that this accumulation of wealth was either an object lesson to savers everywhere or, as inferred at the time both by neighbouring Iran and by the U.S., evidence of something altogether less wholesome. Given the disposition of the key vested foreign interests in Iraq at the time – Iran and the U.S. – it was such (privately-made) accusations of impropriety that prompted Masoud’s unexpected announcement in October 2017 that he would resign the presidency, according to the senior Iraq source. “The Iraqis were given all of the files that Iran had gathered which alleged multi-layered corruption and theft by President Masoud and his son Masrour, who’d been Chancellor of the Kurdistan Region Security Council - its intelligence service – at the time,” said the Iraq source.“The files contained details of alleged secret bank accounts for the stolen funds, money transfer vehicles and routes, methods of payments for bribes, and even the names of high-level couriers and other officials believed to be involved,” he underlined. “One of the most damaging was represented as being an internal use-only report from what was essentially the Finance Ministry of Kurdistan that Iran said showed that Iraqi Kurdistan was running an operational deficit of US$3.2 billion at that point - increasing at a rate of around US$100 million per month – in large part as a result of 28% of the KRG’s entire oil export stock disappearing from official export channels and the resulting funds not going into Erbil’s treasury,” the Iraq source told OilPrice.com. “According to the Iranian personnel there, independent auditors said that this missing 28% had been diverted by Masrour Barzani and sold on via middlemen in Turkey, with the resulting funds then being deposited in an account in a bank in Northern Cyprus under the name of a close female friend of Masrour Barzani, who, Iran said, was connected to Russia’s SVR Sluzhba vneshney razvedki foreign intelligence arm of Russia],” the Iraq source underlined. “Iran saw the SVR involvement as an early sign that Russia was looking to build up its influence in Kurdistan to use as leverage to do the same in the south of Iraq as well,” he said. “ Barzani was then shown this evidence by the Iranians and told that he could either enjoy a comfortable retirement or that all of the documents would be released both publically in English and in Arabic and the Kurdish people would decide whether the Barzanis had stolen the money or not,” he added. For his part,...
    2 replies | 95 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Today, 12:27 AM
    The head of the Massachusetts motor vehicle division has resigned for failing to terminate the commercial driving license of man whose collision with a group of motorcyclists in New Hampshire left seven dead. Twenty-three-year-old Volodymyr Zhukovskyy pleaded not guilty Tuesday to seven counts of negligent homicide and was ordered to remain in preventive detention in New Hampshire, with a judge saying his driving record poses a potential danger to the public and himself. Massachusetts Department of Transportation Secretary and CEO Stephanie Pollack said in a statement that the RMV failed to act on information provided by the Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles about a May 11 incident involving Zhukovskyy that should have cost him his license. As a result, she accepted the resignation of Erin Deveney. More at: https://news.yahoo.com/latest-mass-rmv-head-resigns-004453991.html
    69 replies | 647 view(s)
  • DamianTV's Avatar
    Today, 12:19 AM
    2 replies | 81 view(s)
  • DamianTV's Avatar
    Today, 12:15 AM
    According to Alex, the FBI cleared him of all charges, and, he is going after the media mouthpieces for Libel and Slander. Even if people do not agree with AJ at all, he still has a Constitutional Right to speak. I still think they go after him because he says what they dont want to be said about them, which is the very definition of Free Press.
    2 replies | 88 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 11:54 PM
    Everybody abuses us on trade but the Chinese do so more than most and that is why the deficit with China has been so huge.
    874 replies | 29892 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 10:44 PM
    Beijing's tyranny over its people is fast becoming more terrifying than anything in Nineteen Eighty-Four... It has become fairly cliché to call China’s surveillance state - its artificial intelligence-driven facial recognition, the new “social credit system,” its cultural policing and re-education camps for Uyghur minorities - “something right out of George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four.” But that doesn’t mean it’s not true. Orwell’s dystopian vision, first published 70 years ago this June, was informed by the fascist and communist movements that triggered worldwide military conflict and the deaths of millions of people during the mid-20th century. But Orwell’s warning went well beyond the wars we knew. It cautioned, noted Erich Fromm in an afterword in the 1961 edition, against the loss of humanity and free thought, and the new, increasingly centralized “managerial industrialism, in which man builds machines which act like men and develops men who act like machines.” It showed how that could be used as a tool of totalitarian ambitions. China convulsed in revolution during the 1940s; Mao Zedong established the one-party state of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) in 1949. But Orwell, according to Fromm, had his gaze on Joseph Stalin and the Soviet Union when he wrote Nineteen Eighty-Four, which is set in fictional Oceania, one of three of the world’s superstates. Oceania is run by one party, Ingsoc (English Socialism), headquartered in what is left of post-war London. “Big Brother” is the god-like, mustachioed visage serving as the party’s fearsome symbol of absolute authority. As rooted as Nineteen Eighty-Four is in Orwell’s own uncertain world, he could not have imagined how his predictions for humankind would morph and metastasize beyond the terrors of Mao’s Cultural Revolution and into the cyber-authoritarianism we are seeing in Xi Jinping’s China today (still run by the Chinese Communist Party). Where the Soviet experiment failed, China’s has evolved more powerfully into a hybrid of state-run capitalism. Control is maintained through coercion and social management. There is no rule of law as it is universally understood, and electionsare compulsory, with all candidates, from the most local to the top, pre-approved by the party. Only sanctioned religious worship is allowed. Private enterprise is only “free” by courtesy. Successfully petitioning the government is nearly impossible, if not dangerous. The Internet of course is strictly censored. While one can buy a copy of 1984, any reference comparing it to modern authoritarian governments, especially Maoism, isforbidden.
    1 replies | 24205 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 10:19 PM
    18 replies | 260 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 10:10 PM
    Mexico's president said Tuesday the 15,000 troops his government has deployed to the US border do not have orders to stop migrants from crossing, and vowed to investigate a controversial detention last week."No such order has been issued, and we are going to review that case, so that it doesn't happen again, because that's not our job," President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador told a press conference. He made the comment after an AFP journalist's images of heavily armed National Guardsmen forcibly detaining two women and a young girl at the edge of the Rio Grande river triggered backlash in Mexico, whose government faces pressure from US President Donald Trump to slow a surge of Central American migrants. The statement contradicts what Lopez Obrador's own defense minister said Monday in a joint press conference with the president. Asked whether the National Guardsmen and army troops recently deployed to Mexico's northern border were detaining migrants to prevent them from crossing, Defense Minister Luis Cresencio Sandoval replied: "Yes." "Given that (undocumented) migration is not a crime but rather an administrative violation, we simply detain them and turn them over" to immigration authorities, Sandoval added. However, Lopez Obrador insisted Mexican forces were not there to detain migrants who try to cross the border. "Those are not the instructions they have. They are not there to do that job. That is the work of the migration authorities, not the army," he said. "We are going to deal with this matter so that no abuses are committed."
    285 replies | 4155 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 10:02 PM
    An accidental discovery of a 19th-century clock in a dusty church storage room in Paris has sparked hopes that it can be used to replace a timepiece destroyed in the fire at Notre-Dame cathedral. The ruined clock in Notre-Dame, which measured two metres (6.5 feet) across, was located beneath the roof and spire of the Gothic monument which crashed down in the blaze that stunned France in April. With original drawings lost and no digital records, photographs of the historic clock were the only clue experts had about how they might rebuild it. Then French clockmaker Jean-Baptiste Viot stumbled across an almost identical version while completing an inventory last month at Saint Trinite church in northern Paris, four kilometres (2.5 miles) away from Notre-Dame. "It's incredible. It's the same," he said. "It's like finding a second copy of a burned book." The clock, which had been used in Saint Trinite until being replaced by an electric version more than 50 years ago, was found behind a wooden board next to statues and old furniture in a room accessible via a narrow staircase. "It's almost a miracle," said Olivier Chandez, who is responsible for the upkeep of Notre-Dame's clock. "If we only had the photos, we would have to extrapolate. But with this model, we have all the dimensions". Even if the clock is the same model, "there are a few differences", Chandez said. "Notre-Dame's clock was slightly more elaborate. It's therefore not possible to simply install the clock there". More at: https://news.yahoo.com/replica-clock-sparks-hope-notre-dame-restoration-161648017.html
    206 replies | 6269 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:46 PM
    Pompeo hopes for Afghan peace pact before Sept 1
    67 replies | 2131 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:36 PM
    Illinois has become the latest state to legalize marijuana. The state's new Democratic governor signed a bill Tuesday legalizing the use of the drug. Gov. JB Pritzker campaigned on the issue and the Illinois General Assembly passed a law legalizing and regulating production on May 31. "As the first state in the nation to fully legalize adult-use cannabis through the legislative process, Illinois exemplifies the best of democracy: a bipartisan and deep commitment to better the lives of all of our people," Pritzker said in a statement after he signed the bill. "Legalizing adult-use cannabis brings an important and overdue change to our state, and it’s the right thing to do. This legislation will clear the cannabis-related records of nonviolent offenders through an efficient combination of automatic expungement, gubernatorial pardon and individual court action," he said. More at: https://www.yahoo.com/gma/illinois-set-become-11th-state-legalize-marijuana-151800665--abc-news-topstories.html
    2 replies | 62 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:08 PM
    That's probably why the article I posted said IF and when he is released.
    69 replies | 647 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:07 PM
    Just like I sided with him on the bumpstock ban.:sarcasm:
    31 replies | 315 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:04 PM
    Sanders is expected to be replaced by Mark Morgan, a former Marine and FBI agent who has been leading Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for fewer than two months, according to a senior administration official who spoke on condition of anonymity because the decision has not been finalized. Morgan served as chief of the Border Patrol in the final months of the Obama administration, but he has since become a vocal supporter of President Donald Trump’s hard-line immigration-enforcement strategy. He defended the president’s controversial decision to declare a national emergency to get funding to expand the southern border wall. “The president had no choice,” Morgan said during a February interview on CNN. When announcing Morgan's appointment to head ICE on May 5, Trump called him “a true believer and American Patriot.” And just last week, Morgan vowed to enforce Trump’s plan, which has since been delayed, to ramp up arrests and deportations of families that have entered the country and had their asylum requests denied. “If you come here with a child, that’s a passport in the United States,” Morgan said on the PBS NewsHour. “Nothing happens to you. That’s a slippery slope, and no integrity in the system, and the rule of law is being eroded if we don’t apply consequences.” More at: https://news.yahoo.com/acting-customs-border-protection-commissioner-171458301.html
    3 replies | 100 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:48 PM
    Today @realDonaldTrump signed an Executive Order establishing a White House Council on Eliminating Regulatory Barriers to Affordable Housing led by @SecretaryCarson. By removing burdensome regulations, we can reduce housing costs & strengthen communities! pic.twitter.com/t77FTzeGgX — GOP (@GOP) June 25, 2019
    0 replies | 56 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:35 PM
    On June 24, the Swiss government said it was ready to ban EU stock exchanges from trading Swiss shares if the European Commission follows through on a threat not to extend the stock market equivalence rights that the European Union grants to Switzerland when they expire June 30. Switzerland is not an EU member; instead, some 120 bilateral agreements govern its economic and political relations with the bloc. Since 2014, the Swiss government and the European Commission have been in talks to replace these multiple documents with a single, comprehensive agreement that would deepen Switzerland's ties with the EU single market. But the Swiss government, skeptical of a deal that would align the country more closely with EU rules, has asked Brussels for "clarifications" on three areas: the rights of EU citizens in Switzerland, EU rules regulating state aid to companies and the effects of the deal on Swiss protection of domestic wages. To pressure Bern to sign the deal, Brussels has threatened to end Switzerland's equivalence rights — the recognition that Swiss stock market regulations are comparable to those of the European Union. Equivalence rights allow EU traders to carry out securities transactions in the Swiss market. The Swiss finance minister recently calculated that the volume of trading in the Swiss stock exchange would decrease by between 70 and 80 percent without these rights or without contingency measures. As a result, in mid-2018 Bern designed a contingency plan that would allow EU banks and securities dealers to preserve their access to the Swiss domestic market, though they would have to operate through brokers that are members of the Swiss exchange (instead of the plethora of EU brokers that are currently available). While this plan would limit the damage of losing the equivalence rights, the dispute between Switzerland and the European Union could cause political and economic ties between two trade partners to deteriorate. An escalation of tit-for-tat measures could create fertile ground for anti-EU sentiment in Switzerland, strengthening nationalist parties that want to reduce their country's ties with the bloc. More at: https://worldview.stratfor.com/article/eu-switzerland-stock-market-dispute-brexit
    0 replies | 39 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:31 PM
    India's Trade Ministry is considering incentives including preferential tax rates and tax holidays to lure businesses operating in China that have been affected by the ongoing U.S.-China trade war, Bloomberg reported June 24. The report cites Vietnam and Malaysia as two countries that have capitalized on companies trying to avoid tariffs, while India has largely avoided any gain from the trade war. Areas of focus include "electronics, consumer appliances, electric vehicles, footwear and toys." More at: https://worldview.stratfor.com/situation-report/china-india-india-considering-incentives-attract-businesses-affected-us-china-trade
    0 replies | 42 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:25 PM
    ICE has filed a detainer on Volodymyr Zhukovskyy, 23, who is charged with killing seven bikers Friday in New Hampshire. That means the West Springfield truck driver faces being deported back to his native Ukraine if and when he is released. More at: https://www.bostonherald.com/2019/06/25/ice-moves-against-ukrainian-charged-in-nh-biker-crash/
    69 replies | 647 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:22 PM
    Should have deported him long ago.
    69 replies | 647 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:21 PM
    I expected as much, this makes it more likely that it was a hit.
    69 replies | 647 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:10 PM
    The U.K. government said it would not grant new licenses for arms exports to Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Bahrain and Egypt (including maintenance, military goods and technology contracts), Al Jazeera reported June 25. The announcement follows a recent court decision that ruled U.K. military exports to countries involved in the war in Yemen violated British law. The ban only applies to new arms licenses; current contracts will be allowed to finish. More at: https://worldview.stratfor.com/situation-report/uk-saudi-arabia-london-bans-new-arms-sales-riyadh-and-its-military-allies
    584 replies | 40429 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:59 PM
    Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is considering canceling elections set for Sept. 17 using a little-known legal procedure being explored by Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein, The Jerusalem Post reported June 25. The cancellation would put Israel into uncharted political territory and could cause a political crisis and government paralysis if no government can be formed after the cancellation. It could also mean a second shot for Blue and White, the opposition party headed by Benny Gantz, to be part of the government in a power-sharing agreement with Netanyahu's Likud. More at: https://worldview.stratfor.com/situation-report/israel-netanyahu-considering-canceling-upcoming-elections
    13 replies | 236 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:39 PM
    You’ve heard the claim that boys can transition into girls. Now some British lawmakers and activists want to transition Islam into a race. “It’s a backdoor approach toward enforcing Islamic blasphemy laws,” writes one commentator — using the “Islamophobia” label as cover. As the Gatestone Institute’s Soeren Kern reports: Days after the British government rejected its preferred official definition of Islamophobia, the Muslim Council of Britain, the biggest Islamic organization in Britain, called for the ruling Conservative Party to be officially investigated for Islamophobia. The dispute revolves around an effort by the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on British Muslims, a cross-party formation of around two-dozen MPs in the British Parliament, to institutionalize the definition of Islamophobia in racial rather than religious terms. The APPG, in a November 2018 report titled, “Islamophobia Defined,” proposed the following one-sentence definition of Islamophobia: “Islamophobia is rooted in racism and is a type of racism that targets expressions of Muslimness or perceived Muslimness.” The definition, the result of six months of consultations, was endorsed by hundreds of Muslim organizations, London Mayor Sadiq Khan, as well as several political parties, including Labour, the Liberal Democrats and the Scottish Conservatives. This is just, I suppose, the official, pseudo-intellectual version of the puerile accusation of “racism,” hurled regularly in Internet comments sections, at those daring to render unfashionable opinions on Islam. Yet if Islam were a race, which would it be? Islam has 1.8 billion adherents worldwide, and though most Americans associate the faith with Arabs (not a race), most are not Arab. Indonesia has the largest Muslim population, and it’s Asian (in the racial sense). India and Pakistan have the second and third-largest Muslim populations, but most Indians and Pakistanis are classified as Caucasian (yes, really). For that matter, Arabs and Persians (Iranians) also are Caucasian. Then there’s the fact that there are more Muslims in China than in Syria.
    0 replies | 32 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:31 PM
    PM me if he's interested.
    18 replies | 260 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:30 PM
    A 52-year-old man has been given a conditional sentence and fined by a Swedish court for not deleting ‘hateful’ comments in a Facebook group he managed, according to local media. As administrator for a Facebook group called “Stand Up For Sweden,” the man has been found guilty of allowing “grossly offensive comments that other people had posted” to remain active, a district court in Eskilstuna has ruled. “The indictment of the 52-year-old man has been delivered because, according to the prosecutor, he has committed a violation of the law on liability for electronic message boards,” Fria Tider reports. “According to the law, the defendant does not need to have written a post that, for example, constitutes incitement against a group of people.” The landmark case effectively sets precedent that Swedes can and will be held responsible for ‘offensive speech’ used by other people on the internet. More at: https://europe.infowars.com/swedish-court-convicts-man-for-allowing-hateful-comments-in-facebook-group/
    0 replies | 31 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:21 PM
    Or launder it.
    31 replies | 315 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:17 PM
    The European Union’s center-right alliance is determined to defy French President Emmanuel Macron in the race to nominate the next EU Commission chief, according to senior party officials. European conservatives were enraged that Macron blocked their candidate for commission president, Manfred Weber, at last week’s summit in Brussels, and suspect he is seeking to undermine their role, even though they won the most seats in the next EU Parliament, the officials said. The EU’s 28 national leaders are responsible for nominating the next head of the EU executive but need to find a candidate who can win the backing of the parliament in order to take office. The result of last month’s EU election -- which saw both the center-right EPP and the Socialists lose seats -- means that at least three parties will be required to install a commission president. Deteriorating relations between France and Germany are raising the stakes for an appointment that will shape the bloc’s agenda for the next five years. The upshot is that the two sides are becoming increasingly entrenched ahead of an extra summit meeting set for this Sunday. That could lead to further delays in naming other EU officials, including a successor to European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi. "So far we’ve only seen destructive proposals," Weber said in an interview with European newspapers including Spain’s El Pais. "We run the risk of entering a period of crisis management. I hope that no one wants to take that risk." French officials say they have no intention of putting forward their own candidate at this point because they are aware that it would only serve to give the EPP a target.
    0 replies | 40 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:52 PM
    We get enough of that here.
    43 replies | 344 view(s)
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Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

Robert Heinlein

Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

Groucho Marx

I love mankind…it’s people I can’t stand.

Linus, from the Peanuts comic

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Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

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