#1176  
Old 06-30-2017, 05:04 AM
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Old 06-30-2017, 01:29 PM
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Default Re: News Miscellany

Scott Ritter backs up Seymour Hersh:

Quote:
The White House statement comes on the heels of the publication of an article by Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist Seymour Hersh in a German publication, Die Welt, which questions, among many things, the validity of the intelligence underpinning the allegations leveled at Syria regarding the events of April 4 in and around Khan Sheikhun. (In the interests of full disclosure, I had assisted Mr. Hersh in fact-checking certain aspects of his article; I was not a source of any information used in his piece.) Not surprisingly, Mr. Hersh’s article has come under attack from many circles, the most vociferous of these being a UK-based citizen activist named Eliot Higgins who, through his Bellingcat blog, has been widely cited by media outlets in the U.S. and UK as a source of information implicating the Syrian government in that alleged April chemical attack on Khan Sheikhun.

Neither Hersh nor Higgins possesses definitive proof to bolster their respective positions; the latter draws upon assertions made by supposed eyewitnesses backed up with forensic testing of materials alleged to be sourced to the scene of the attack that indicate the presence of Sarin, a deadly nerve agent, while the former relies upon anonymous sources within the U.S. military and intelligence establishments who provide a counter narrative to the official U.S. government position. What is clear, however, is that both cannot be right—either the Syrian government conducted a chemical weapons attack on Khan Sheikhun, or it didn’t. There is no middle ground.
Ex-Weapons Inspector: Trump’s Sarin Claims Built on ‘Lie’ | The American Conservative
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  #1178  
Old 07-01-2017, 05:02 AM
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Fyre Festival co-founder arrested for fraud
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  #1179  
Old 07-03-2017, 03:32 AM
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I don’t really understand the chemistry behind this, and I’m hoping some people with better knowledge (TLR?) can weigh in. I’m also not fully familiar with the OPCW’s methodology. However, Brian Whitaker is arguing that Hersh’s sources have gotten the story wrong:

Syria, Seymour Hersh and the Sarin denialists – Brian Whitaker – Medium

There’s also this thread from Eliot Higgins (reposted in text format for people who don’t twit):




Quote:
A little thread about those theories that the April 4th 2017 Khan Sheikhoun chemical attack is a false flag, and other nonsense. I'm seeing a lot of people trying to dismiss the findings of the OPCW because of concerns over chain of custody. While these concerns aren't invalid, the OPCW report depends on multiple sources, including witness statements, samples from multiple sources, biomedical samples collected under the supervision of the OPCW, even information provided by the Syrian government, which includes witnesses, samples, and chemical analysis. And the OPCW bases their conclusion sarin was used on all these different sources, thoroughly detailing them.

So for their conclusion to be wrong they would have to had been a massive conspiracy, involving the following: Planting sarin and other chemicals on samples, ensuring almost all individuals interview gave the same stories, purposely exposing victims to sarin so they would produce positive biomedical samples, then getting the survivors to lie. Then the Russian and Syrian governments would have to play along by refusing to release any evidence to support their claims, and that's with both governments knowing full well the OPCW report is based on a series of fakes and deciding to stay quiet. This is doubly true with the Seymour Hersh version of events, where Russia scouted the target for days.

So for the OPCW report to be false then it would also require Russian and Syrian government to be complicit. Which is pants on the head crazy.
I don’t trust the Trump administration, the Russian government, or the Syrian government further than I can throw them, but if this reporting is accurate, a conspiracy of this magnitude would be almost impossible to pull off. I can’t pretend that I have any idea what the fuck is actually going on though. Everything related to Syria is a colossal mess, and the more I read about it, the less I feel like I understand.



Regarding the election a couple weeks back (I would’ve responded sooner, but I had exams and couldn’t really write a detailed response):

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Originally Posted by Kael View Post
I'm not saying all the "omg the Democrats are dying!" hot takes are worth a load of piss, and I meant it when I said The Man's analysis was good and smart. If it turns in to actual flipped seats in 2018, I'll eat my crow with relish. Until then, pardon me if I don't get excited by "close." My optimism is still in critical condition, and about to get its health coverage dismantled by people who don't give a single fuck how "close" they won by, only that they won.
Well, again, “close” isn’t really the reason results like this are a cause for optimism. The reason is the vote swing. People like to say that Kansas re-elected Brownback after he’d ruined the state, but his vote share collapsed from something like +22% to something like +2% (I forget the exact numbers). Again here, the Republicans’ vote share collapsed by around ten to twenty percent in each of these elections. We basically would’ve had a 1 in 100 shot of winning any of these districts going in. But there are a lot of other districts where our odds are much better than 1 in 100. If the Republicans’ vote share collapses by similar numbers nationwide, 2018 will be a bloodbath for them if it is an even remotely fair election.

The fairness of the election is, however, a major cause for concern. Kris Kobach’s fraudulent voter fraud fraud committee is pretty much a transparent excuse to strip voting rights from millions of citizens on completely fraudulent grounds. On the plus side, a number of secretaries of state have told Kobach to go pound sand (including one from Mississippi!) and a number of others have refused to supply him any information that wasn’t already publicly available. On the minus side, some may actually comply with his requests. Furthermore, I expect this to end up being litigated, and the Roberts Court has been no particular friend to voting rights, and with Justice* Gorsuch I expect it to become even worse.

There’s also legitimate cause to question whether the results being reported were legitimate in the first place. I can’t remember if anyone posted this here, but the Department of Homeland Security has confirmed that it never ran an audit to see if vote totals from the 2016 election were hacked, and indeed, due to the nature of the machines used in some states, it would actually be completely impossible to audit the results, because there is no paper trail. There are IT security practices such as non-repudiation, data integrity protection, authentication, and access control that can be used to protect against hacks of this kind of information, but the electronic voting machines used in elections have basically none of these, and IT security professionals have been warning that they are extraordinarily insecure for literally decades. No one in a position of power has listened, and indeed in some cases they have actively made things worse (for example, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court rejected an argument that voting machines required paper trails). Given the absolute disdain for expertise in modern America, I do not expect this to improve without mass popular agitation.

We also know that Russia’s intrusion into our country’s networks was far more thorough than previously reported, and that they did in fact attempt to intrude into our election systems. The reporting has yet to reveal a smoking gun with regard to actual election tampering, but there is certainly a lot of smoke.

The long and the short of it is that it’s entirely possible 2016 was stolen, whether by the Russians or the Republicans, and we need to start taking steps now to ensure the same doesn’t occur in 2018.

(I have another major assignment coming up soon, so apologies if I disappear for awhile again.)
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  #1180  
Old 07-03-2017, 05:53 AM
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Default Re: News Miscellany

lol, the optics of this.
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  #1181  
Old 07-03-2017, 07:24 AM
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Default Re: News Miscellany

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Man View Post
Kris Kobach’s fraudulent voter fraud fraud committee is pretty much a transparent excuse to strip voting rights from millions of citizens on completely fraudulent grounds. On the plus side, a number of secretaries of state have told Kobach to go pound sand (including one from Mississippi!) and a number of others have refused to supply him any information that wasn’t already publicly available.
The cynic in me says that the Mississippi Secretary of State was merely taking umbrage that someone from Kansas wants to tell him how to suppress African-American votes.
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  #1182  
Old 07-04-2017, 07:44 AM
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Whoops: Recalled buffalo chicken salad is actually tuna salad, USDA says - ABC

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Old 07-04-2017, 09:40 AM
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No actual buffalo then? :sadcheer:
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  #1184  
Old 07-04-2017, 07:24 PM
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It's the buffalo chicken of the sea!
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  #1185  
Old 07-04-2017, 08:01 PM
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Default Re: News Miscellany

Irish PM knows just how to flirt with Justin Trudeau | CTV News
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  #1186  
Old 07-05-2017, 09:03 AM
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Socks appeal :socks:

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  #1187  
Old 07-06-2017, 07:36 AM
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Default Re: News Miscellany

Hobby Lobby Fined $3M, Agrees to Return Smuggled Iraqi Artifacts - NBC News

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  #1188  
Old 07-06-2017, 10:25 PM
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So, Steve Green knew perfectly well that he was financing looting and that it was illegal -- heck, he'd be explicitly warned.

What is his punishment? He has to return the stolen items and pay a $3 million fine -- which is pocket change to someone like him.


Meanwhile, if I walked into a Hobby Lobby store and pocketed an item with a retail value of a few dollars, I'd likely go to jail.


You know, maybe there wouldn't be so much corporate crime if rich white guys occasionally went to prison when they're caught performing or financing huge crimes. But, of course, this is America: rich white criminals don't go to prison; they get a slap on the wrist and are told "don't do that again -- or at least, don't get caught."
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  #1189  
Old 07-06-2017, 11:00 PM
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Default Re: News Miscellany

That article leaves out the fun fact that some of the money they paid very likely went to ISIS.

Hobby Lobby Purchased Thousands of Ancient Artifacts Smuggled Out of Iraq - The Atlantic
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  #1190  
Old 07-06-2017, 11:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lisarea View Post
That article leaves out the fun fact that some of the money they paid very likely went to ISIS.

Hobby Lobby Purchased Thousands of Ancient Artifacts Smuggled Out of Iraq - The Atlantic
Of course it did, that is a major source of their funding now.

When can we expect Hobby Lobby execs to be brought up on charges of providing material aid to terrorists?
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  #1191  
Old 07-07-2017, 12:30 AM
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Default Re: News Miscellany

It has been awhile since I read the Bible, but I can't seem to recall any passages condemning the use of contraceptives.

On the other hand, I seem to recall several passages condemning theft, not to mention lying.


Apparently, I was reading it wrong ...
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  #1192  
Old 07-07-2017, 04:16 AM
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Default Re: News Miscellany

You weren't wearing your Republican reading glasses, TLR.
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Old 07-07-2017, 04:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Lone Ranger View Post
Apparently, I was reading it wrong ...
“For some reason, the most vocal Christians among us never mention the Beatitudes (Matthew 5). But, often with tears in their eyes, the demand that the Ten Commandments be posted in public buildings. And of course, that's Moses, not Jesus. I haven't heard one of them demand that the Sermon on the Mount, the Beatitudes, be posted anywhere.
"Blessed are the merciful" in a courtroom? "Blessed are the peacemakers" in the Pentagon? Give me a break!”

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  #1194  
Old 07-07-2017, 09:07 AM
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Lacking an Idiocy thread, I'll just put this here:




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  #1195  
Old 07-07-2017, 10:57 AM
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Too many Idiocy threads to choose from, I'll just put this here:
:fixed:
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  #1196  
Old 07-07-2017, 08:49 PM
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Default Re: News Miscellany

Forget it's Trudeau.

Going around Trump on trade, Trudeau will be first Canadian PM to address U.S. governors' meeting | Toronto Star

It would have been any Canadian PM, really.

Imagine if it had been PM Mulcair. Him up at the podium, says, "I hear some of you consider yourselves liberals." Point, laugh, fist bump Bernie, leave.
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  #1197  
Old 07-07-2017, 08:52 PM
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I'm looking forward to all the pictures of governor's looking at Trudeau with love in their eyes.
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Old 07-07-2017, 09:11 PM
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Especially the anti-gay ones.
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Old 07-07-2017, 09:12 PM
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Photos: Huge Fire Destroys Oakland Development « CBS San Francisco

Panic not, "Under construction."
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  #1200  
Old 07-08-2017, 08:52 AM
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+++ G20 Newsblog in English +++: Hamburg Takes Stock after Night of Rioting - SPIEGEL ONLINE



Ouch, that looks pretty bad. By the way, those aren't machine guns, Mr. Spiegel.
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