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Wednesday, December 28, 2016

A Significant Resolution on Israel - The New Yorker

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"Last Friday, the United Nations Security Council unanimously passed Resolution 2334, with a dramatic abstention by the Obama Administration. The resolution called on Palestinian leaders to take ‘immediate steps to prevent all acts of violence against civilians, including acts of terror,’ and refrain from ‘incitement and inflammatory rhetoric.’ Its real target, though, was Israel’s settlement project, which, the resolution sharply claimed, has ‘no legal validity and constitutes a flagrant violation under international law and a major obstacle to the achievement of the two-State solution and a just, lasting and comprehensive peace.’

Later in the day on Friday, I spoke to Robert Malley, the special assistant to the President on the National Security Council, the senior adviser for the campaign against isis, and the White House co├Ârdinator for the Middle East, North Africa, and the Gulf. In February, 2011, the Obama Administration vetoed a similar U.N. condemnation of settlements—opposing fourteen other members of the Security Council and a hundred and twenty co-sponsors from the General Assembly. Why abstain now, I asked Malley, and not then? ‘A real difference is that efforts to advance negotiations were ongoing in 2011,’ Malley told me. ‘We were concerned not to interfere with a process that had some prospect of progressing. That’s not the case since Secretary Kerry’s efforts in 2014. We are at an impasse. There is no prospect of resumption of serious meaningful talks between the sides, so the argument that a U.N. resolution would interfere with negotiations doesn’t hold much water.’

"

(Via.)   A Significant Resolution on Israel - The New Yorker:

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Aleppo’s “Evacuation” Is a Crime Against Humanity - The New Yorker

"Last Thursday, as forces loyal to the Syrian government advanced through eastern Aleppo and despondent civilians there wondered whether they would be massacred, Syria’s President, Bashar al-Assad, stood in a sunlit courtyard in Damascus, dressed in a crisp blue suit, and compared his victory to the births of Jesus Christ and the prophet Muhammad. Just as our calendars count the years before and after those events, he explained, “I believe that we will talk about history—and not just the history of Syria but of the entire world—as before and after the liberation of Aleppo.” He rocked back and forth on his heels, waving his arms and raising his eyebrows, unable to conceal his excitement.



So, characteristically, an autocrat inflates his place in history. But, in this case, it’s worth acknowledging that Assad has a point: the significance of Aleppo’s collapse is far greater than its physical territory, its ancient history, and its former splendor. For more than four years, Western governments and the United Nations stood by, watching, as Assad and his backers ostentatiously ignored the laws of war, and residents of eastern Aleppo live-streamed their own extermination. Now, along with tens of thousands of civilians, the credibility of the powerful countries and institutions that could have helped them, but didn’t, lies in Aleppo’s rubble and blood."





Aleppo’s “Evacuation” Is a Crime Against Humanity - The New Yorker

Friday, December 16, 2016

Chinese warship seizes US underwater drone in international waters | World news | The Guardian

A Chinese navy warship has seized an underwater drone deployed by an American oceanographic vessel in international waters in the South China Sea, triggering a formal diplomatic protest and demand for its return from the United States, a US defense official told Reuters on Friday.

The incident – the first of its kind in recent memory – took place on Thursday north-west of Subic Bay just as the USNS Bowditch, an oceanographic survey ship, was about to retrieve the unmanned, underwater vehicle (UUV), the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

“The UUV was lawfully conducting a military survey in the waters of the South China Sea,” the official said.

“It’s a sovereign immune vessel, clearly marked in English not to be removed from the water – that it was US property.”

The Chinese seizure will add to concerns about China’s growing military presence and aggressive posture in the disputed South China Sea, including its militarization of maritime outposts.


Chinese warship seizes US underwater drone in international waters | World news | The Guardian

Sunday, December 04, 2016

At Least 2,000 Veterans Arrive at Standing Rock to Protest Dakota Pipeline - ABC News

We must understand what happened here. Native peoples were shot with rubber bullets, tear gas and violence until White veterans arrived. This confirms the analysis that minority rights are not protected in America unless it effects a significant group of Whites. The victory was won and the government violence stopped only when famous Whites arrived. Non White lives still do not matter in America. "The vets, led by Wesley Clark Jr., son of retired general and former presidential candidate Wesley Clark, began arriving in force today to help protest against the controversial crude oil pipeline project in North Dakota.
They are joining the months-long demonstration at a moment of heightened drama: The North Dakota governor has issued an emergency evacuation order for protesters around the site, which follows a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers deadline for demonstrators to leave the area by Monday, Dec. 5."


At Least 2,000 Veterans Arrive at Standing Rock to Protest Dakota Pipeline - ABC News

At Least 2,000 Veterans Arrive at Standing Rock to Protest Dakota Pipeline - ABC News

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We must understand what happened here. Native peoples were shot with rubber bullets, tear gas and violence until White veterans arrived. This confirms the analysis that minority rights are not protected in America unless it effects a significant group of Whites. The victory was won and the government violence stopped only when famous Whites arrived. Non White lives still do not matter in America. "The vets, led by Wesley Clark Jr., son of retired general and former presidential candidate Wesley Clark, began arriving in force today to help protest against the controversial crude oil pipeline project in North Dakota.

They are joining the months-long demonstration at a moment of heightened drama: The North Dakota governor has issued an emergency evacuation order for protesters around the site, which follows a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers deadline for demonstrators to leave the area by Monday, Dec. 5."

(Via.)  At Least 2,000 Veterans Arrive at Standing Rock to Protest Dakota Pipeline - ABC News:

Inside the Churches That Are Leading New York’s Sanctuary Movement | The Nation

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“On the Tuesday after the election, two dozen pastors gathered in the back room of a Lower Manhattan church to begin plotting the resistance. Most of the faith leaders were immigrants, and all of them members of the New Sanctuary Coalition of New York City, an interfaith network of congregations, organizations, and activists. Since its founding in 2007, the coalition has worked on the front lines in the fight to protect undocumented New Yorkers from detention and deportation.

The meeting began with a prayer—‘We pray you will give us all the right to remain in justice, in solidarity and in truth’—delivered by a soft-spoken Mexican priest, first in Spanish, then in English. Updates from the past week followed—reports of congregations in crisis, sleepless nights spent consoling worried parents, tearful children afraid to go to school. The mood was tense but focused, and before long they’d arrived at the main item on the agenda."

Inside the Churches That Are Leading New York’s Sanctuary Movement | The Nation (Via.)

Inside the Churches That Are Leading New York’s Sanctuary Movement | The Nation

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“On the Tuesday after the election, two dozen pastors gathered in the back room of a Lower Manhattan church to begin plotting the resistance. Most of the faith leaders were immigrants, and all of them members of the New Sanctuary Coalition of New York City, an interfaith network of congregations, organizations, and activists. Since its founding in 2007, the coalition has worked on the front lines in the fight to protect undocumented New Yorkers from detention and deportation.

The meeting began with a prayer—‘We pray you will give us all the right to remain in justice, in solidarity and in truth’—delivered by a soft-spoken Mexican priest, first in Spanish, then in English. Updates from the past week followed—reports of congregations in crisis, sleepless nights spent consoling worried parents, tearful children afraid to go to school. The mood was tense but focused, and before long they’d arrived at the main item on the agenda."

Inside the Churches That Are Leading New York’s Sanctuary Movement | The Nation (Via.)

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Steve Mnuchin, Contender For Trump Treasury Secretary, Headed 'Foreclosure Machine' : NPR

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Steve Mnuchin, Contender For Trump Treasury Secretary, Headed 'Foreclosure Machine' : NPR

An Inmate Died Of Thirst In A Jail Run By A Loudly Pro-Trump Sheriff | The Huffington Post

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"WASHINGTON ― Authorities have ruled the death of an inmate at a jail run by a top law enforcement supporter of GOP nominee Donald Trump a homicide caused by “profound dehydration.” 
Terrill Thomas, 38, was found dead in a Milwaukee County Jail cell on April 24, nine days after being arrested in connection with a shooting. Other inmates heard Thomas beg for water in the days before he died, the Journal Sentinel reported in July. 
The Huffington Post has been tracking jail deaths ― more than 800 ― in the year since Sandra Bland died in a Texas jail on July 13, 2015. "

An Inmate Died Of Thirst In A Jail Run By A Loudly Pro-Trump Sheriff | The Huffington Post: ""

(Via.)

Monday, November 21, 2016

Cops Are Watching Your Facebook Feed | The Nation

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 Last week, the Brennan Center for Justice released a map showing that 151 police departments, cities, and counties across the country have collectively spent millions of dollars on software enabling them to monitor activity on social media—a number that almost certainly understates both the number of jurisdictions and the amounts expended. These tools allow agencies to mine social media posts for individuals’ location and other data; Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram even supplied special data feeds to companies that allowed law enforcement to track protests in Baltimore and Ferguson, Missouri.

According to the Brennan Center’s research, big spenders include the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, which spent nearly $200,000 over two and a half years; the County of Los Angeles, which also spent close to $200,000 over three years; and Harris County, Texas, which spent over $150,000 in the same number of years. Only a small fraction of the jurisdictions surveyed have publicly-available policies on how to use social media to monitor civilians.

The new revelations are not surprising. In a recent survey conducted by the International Association of Chiefs of Police, over half of the responding law enforcement agencies reported that they used social media for “listening/monitoring,” and three-quarters for “intelligence.” On the federal side, the Department of Homeland Security, which already monitors social media domestically, recently floated a vague and illconceived proposal to request “social media identifiers” from twenty million travelers per year.

.Cops Are Watching Your Facebook Feed | The Nation

There Is No ‘Safe Space’ in Art: What Mike Pence Should Have Learned From ‘Hamilton’ - The Daily Beast

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"It is heartening, for those who work in arts and culture, to see their work migrate to the front pages. It’s rare: The world of culture is seen as more rarefied than the 24-hour news cycle. But the stratospheric success of Hamilton means it has often traversed both. It is that rare thing; an intelligent, stirring work of art that has found a populist home on stage on Broadway, feted not just by critics but by the general public who have been to see it. You’ll have seen its songs and stars on TV, if you haven’t seen them on stage. The difficulty of securing a ticket has become a mainstream joke. The weekend bought the show back to the front page. One of the actors, Brandon Victor Dixon, gracefully read out a statement to the Vice President Elect Mike Pence, who was in the audience. It wasn’t rudely phrased. It wasn’t rudely spoken. It wasn’t rude in any way. We know this because it was videotaped. We can see it. If you choose to see it as harassment or rudeness, you are willfully misreading what you are seeing or hearing. Dixon’s speech was a request from the heart, and—this seems to have been somewhat overlooked—a heartfelt plea to Pence to recognize and respect true diversity."

(Via.)  There Is No ‘Safe Space’ in Art: What Mike Pence Should Have Learned From ‘Hamilton’ - The Daily Beast

Monday, November 14, 2016

Comey really did elect Trump. Here's the data that shows it.

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"Trump’s analysts had detected this upsurge in the electorate even before FBI Director James Comey delivered his Oct. 28 letter to Congress announcing that he was reopening his investigation into Clinton’s e-mails. But the news of the investigation accelerated the shift of a largely hidden rural mass of voters toward Trump.

 

[snip] Trump’s team chose to focus on this electorate, partly because it was the only possible path for them. But after Comey, that movement of older, whiter voters became newly evident. It’s what led Trump’s campaign to broaden the electoral map in the final two weeks and send the candidate into states such as Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Michigan that no one else believed he could win.

[snip] The message Trump delivered to those voters was radically different from anything they would hear from an ordinary Republican: a bracing screed that implicated the entire global power structure—the banks, the government, the media, the guardians of secular culture—in a dark web of moral and intellectual corruption. And Trump insisted that he alone could fix it."

Comey really did elect Trump. Here's the data that shows it.: ""

(Via.)

Veteran Journalist Gwen Ifill Passes Away at 61

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RIP to both a groundbreaking and fabulous journalist. She was one of the bright lights of my generation and someone I always admired. She was the state of her art. We will sorely miss her and wish the best to her family.

Veteran Journalist Gwen Ifill Passes Away at 61: ""

(Via.)

Veteran Journalist Gwen Ifill Passes Away at 61

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RIP to both a groundbreaking and fabulous journalist. She was one of the bright lights of my generation and someone I always admired. She was the state of her art. We will sorely miss her and wish the best to her family.

Veteran Journalist Gwen Ifill Passes Away at 61: ""

(Via.)

Veteran Journalist Gwen Ifill Passes Away at 61. RIP to both a groundbreaking and fabulous journalist. She was one of the bright lights of my generation and someone I always admired. She was the state of her art. We will sorely miss her and wish the best to her family.

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Veteran Journalist Gwen Ifill Passes Away at 61: ""

(Via.)

Veteran Journalist Gwen Ifill Passes Away at 61

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RIP to both a groundbreaking and fabulous journalist. She was one of the bright lights of my generation and someone I always admired. She was the state of her art. We will sorely miss her and wish the best to her family.

Veteran Journalist Gwen Ifill Passes Away at 61: ""

(Via.)

Sunday, November 06, 2016

FBI: Review of new emails doesn't change conclusion on Clinton - CNNPolitics.com

"CNN)FBI Director James Comey told lawmakers Sunday the agency hasn't changed its opinion that Hillary Clinton should not face criminal charges after a review of new emails.

Comey had dropped a bombshell 11 days from the election when he informed Congress that the FBI had discovered emails in its separate investigation of Anthony Weiner, the estranged husband of top Clinton aide Huma Abedin, that could be connected to its investigation of whether Clinton mishandled classified information by using a private email server.
The news could help Clinton put to rest a controversy that has dogged her in the 2016 race's closing days, helping Donald Trump narrow a polling gap nationally and in key battleground states.
    "Based on our review, we have not changed our conclusions that we expressed in July," Comey said in the letter to top Republicans on the House Oversight Committee.














    FBI: Review of new emails doesn't change conclusion on Clinton - CNNPolitics.com

    FBI: Review of new emails doesn't change conclusion on Clinton - CNNPolitics.com

    "CNN)FBI Director James Comey told lawmakers Sunday the agency hasn't changed its opinion that Hillary Clinton should not face criminal charges after a review of new emails.



    Comey had dropped a bombshell 11 days from the election when he informed Congress that the FBI had discovered emails in its separate investigation of Anthony Weiner, the estranged husband of top Clinton aide Huma Abedin, that could be connected to its investigation of whether Clinton mishandled classified information by using a private email server.

    The news could help Clinton put to rest a controversy that has dogged her in the 2016 race's closing days, helping Donald Trump narrow a polling gap nationally and in key battleground states.

    Emotions run high in final days of the campaign

    Election 2016: Emotions run high in final days of the campaign

    "Based on our review, we have not changed our conclusions that we expressed in July," Comey said in the letter to top Republicans on the House Oversight Committee."



    FBI: Review of new emails doesn't change conclusion on Clinton - CNNPolitics.com

    Al Franken: FBI's James Comey should face Senate hearings - CNNPolitics.com

    "Washington (CNN)Sen. Al Franken called Sunday for the Senate Judiciary Committee to hold hearings on FBI Director James Comey's handling of the investigation into Hillary Clinton's private server. And the Minnesota senator said he thinks Hillary Clinton can rely on his state's voters despite a last-minute visit from Donald Trump, though he said he's always "nervous."



    "I think that there should be hearings, and I'm certain there will be hearings in the Judiciary Committee on this matter," the Franken told CNN's Jake Tapper on "State of the Union."

    His comments reflected the Democratic frustration with Comey telling lawmakers 11 days before the November 8 election that the FBI was reviewing new emails potentially connected to its investigation into whether Clinton mishandled classified information."





    Al Franken: FBI's James Comey should face Senate hearings - CNNPolitics.com

    Wednesday, October 12, 2016

    Pentagon: Missile Fired At U.S. Navy Destroyer Off Yemen's Coast : The Two-Way : NPR

    "The Pentagon says that a missile has been fired at U.S. Navy destroyer USS Mason off the coast of Yemen — for the second time in four days.

    "At least one missile" originated from Houthi-controlled territory near the Red Sea port city of al-Hudaydah, Pentagon press secretary Peter Cook said in a statement to NPR's Tom Bowman.
    "The ship employed defensive countermeasures, and the missile did not reach the USS Mason," the statement reads. "There was no damage to the ship or its crew." He adds that the ship employed "defensive countermeasures," without elaborating."


    Pentagon: Missile Fired At U.S. Navy Destroyer Off Yemen's Coast : The Two-Way : NPR

    Monday, October 10, 2016

    ‘Apprentice’ producers have footage of Trump using N-word: claim - NY Daily News

    **FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY AND CANNOT BE ALTERED, ARCHIVED OR RESOLD.  SPECIFIC CLEARANCE REQUIRED FOR COMERCIAL OR PROMOTIONAL USE.  CONTACT YOUR NBCU REPRESNTATIVE FOR FURTHER INFORMATION**



    "Producers of "The Apprentice," the reality show Donald Trump hosted for more than 10 years, are sitting on bombshell footage of the GOP nominee using the N-word, an Emmy-award winning producer claimed Sunday.

    In a series of tweets Sunday, producer Chris Nee said she's heard such tapes exist of Trump using the obscenity but isn't in possession of the footage herself.
    Nee, who didn’t work on “The Apprentice,” also hinted that she, and many others, had signed a contract with Mark Burnett, the lead producer of the show, that would make anyone who leaks such footage liable to pay a $5 million fine."




    ‘Apprentice’ producers have footage of Trump using N-word: claim - NY Daily News

    Kenneth Thompson dead; Brooklyn DA, 50, had cancer, officials say | Newsday

    "OMG, RIP  "Brooklyn District Attorney Kenneth Thompson, who announced on Tuesday he was taking leave to deal with a cancer diagnosis, has died, according to a statement released Sunday by his office.

    The statement said Thompson died Sunday of cancer at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in Manhattan with his family by his side. The statement did not specify the type of cancer Thomson had or who will replace him on an interim basis until the 2017 election."



    Kenneth Thompson dead; Brooklyn DA, 50, had cancer, officials say | Newsday

    Friday, October 07, 2016

    Hurricane Matthew: Haiti dead reach 800 as south awaits aid - BBC News

    "The UN has warned it could take days for the full impact of Hurricane Matthew in Haiti to emerge, as the death toll soars to more than 800 dead.

    The death toll has doubled, and may rise, as rescue teams gain access to southern areas cut off by the storm.

    The World Food Programme's Carlos Veloso says some of the hard-hit towns can only be reached by air or sea.

    Many of the deaths in Haiti were in the south-western coast, which suffered the full force of the hurricane this week."



    Hurricane Matthew: Haiti dead reach 800 as south awaits aid - BBC News

    Trump recorded having extremely lewd conversation about women in 2005 - Would you want this sleazebag around your daughter? Would you want him as a role model for your sons? What about the phony evangelicals who support Trump? Would you want him as President? -The Washington Post




    Trump recorded having extremely lewd conversation about women in 2005 - The Washington Post

    Thursday, October 06, 2016

    'Hanoi Hannah,' Whose Broadcasts Taunted And Entertained American GIs, Dies At 87 : The Two-Way : NPR

    "One of North Vietnam's most recognizable wartime voices fell silent last Friday, when former radio broadcaster Trinh Thi Ngo, dubbed "Hanoi Hannah" by American service members, died at age 87."



    'Hanoi Hannah,' Whose Broadcasts Taunted And Entertained American GIs, Dies At 87 : The Two-Way : NPR

    Wednesday, October 05, 2016

    Hillary Clinton hits Mike Pence with reminders of ... Mike Pence

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    "Much like his leader and Royal Whiteness Donald Trump, Republican VP nominee Mike Pence lied, squinted, lied and then lied some more. That’s been the method of operation for Republican nominee Donald Trump and his cronies during the entire campaign. As John Fulgelsang once alluded brilliantly and crudely about another Trump surrogate, the douche doesn’t fall far from the bag?” Tuesday night’s Vice Presidential Debate proved two things—Trump and Pence represent most everything that’s wrong in America, and they will say whatever they want to try and get elected." 

     

    Hillary Clinton hits Mike Pence with reminders of ... Mike Pence: ""

    Saturday, October 01, 2016

    Gary Johnson Vows to Get Tough on East Korea, Dumb, dumb and dumber. - The New Yorker

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    "NEW YORK (The Borowitz Report)—In an appearance Friday on CNN, Gary Johnson, the Libertarian Presidential nominee, promised that as President he would get tough on East Korea.

    ‘This behavior is unacceptable,’ he said. ‘The East Koreans are making us look like idiots.’

    While stressing that he remained, for the most part, an isolationist, he said, ‘I will do everything in my power as President to support our allies in West Korea.’

    He also blasted the Obama Administration for its ‘lack of transparency’ in conducting foreign policy. ‘I think it’s unconscionable that I just found out about these countries today,’ he said."

    (Via.)  Gary Johnson Vows to Get Tough on East Korea - The New Yorker

    Sunday, September 25, 2016

    Rarity of Tulsa Shooting: Female Officers Are Almost Never Involved - The New York Times

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    "But this time, the officer firing the deadly shot was a woman, a rarity in fatal police encounters.

    ‘That is an anomaly,’ said Chuck Wexler, the executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum, a policy group. ‘One of things we know from our work on developing training is that the skills that women use in these situations — primarily communication and engaging with the person — are enormously effective in defusing potentially volatile encounters.’

    Police officers kill about 1,000 people each year, according to data collected by Philip M. Stinson, an associate professor of criminal justice at Bowling Green State University in Ohio, who uses figures from the Justice Department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Only a handful of those shootings are by female officers.

    Mr. Stinson’s analysis shows that since 2005, there have been 77 police officers charged with manslaughter or murder for an on-duty shooting. Only three of those, including Officer Shelby, were women. The other two were not convicted.

    Beginning in the 1990s, police departments started recruiting women more aggressively as they sought to minimize the use of excessive force. There are now more than 100,000 female law enforcement officers in the nation, members of a group that has risen to the highest ranks in Houston, Minneapolis, Seattle and other big cities."

    (Via.)   Rarity of Tulsa Shooting: Female Officers Are Almost Never Involved - The New York Times:

    Hillary Clinton for President - The New York Times

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    “The 2016 campaign has brought to the surface the despair and rage of poor and middle-class Americans who say their government has done little to ease the burdens that recession, technological change, foreign competition and war have heaped on their families.
    Over 40 years in public life, Hillary Clinton has studied these forces and weighed responses to these problems. Our endorsement is rooted in respect for her intellect, experience, toughness and courage over a career of almost continuous public service, often as the first or only woman in the arena…"

    Hillary Clinton for President - The New York Times: ""

    Sunday, September 04, 2016

    G20 Ends Abruptly as Obama Calls Putin a Jackass - The New Yorker

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    "
    The press corps appeared stunned by the uncharacteristic outburst from Mr. Obama, who then unleashed a ten-minute tirade at the stone-faced Russian President.
    ‘Look, I’m not just talking about Snowden and Syria,’ Mr. Obama said. ‘What about Pussy Riot? What about your anti-gay laws? Total jackass moves, my friend.’
    As Mr. Putin narrowed his eyes in frosty silence, Mr. Obama seemed to warm to his topic.
    ‘If you think I’m the only one who feels this way, you’re kidding yourself,’ Mr. Obama said, jabbing his finger in the direction of the Russian President’s face. ‘Ask Angela Merkel. Ask David Cameron. Ask the Turkish guy. Every last one of them thinks you’re a dick.’"
    (Via.)  G20 Ends Abruptly as Obama Calls Putin a Jackass - The New Yorker:

    Thursday, August 25, 2016

    Is Donald Trump a Racist? - The New York Times

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    "HAS the party of Lincoln just nominated a racist to be president? We shouldn’t toss around such accusations lightly, so I’ve looked back over more than 40 years of Donald Trump’s career to see what the record says.
    One early red flag arose in 1973, when President Richard Nixon’s Justice Department — not exactly the radicals of the day — sued Trump and his father, Fred Trump, for systematically discriminating against blacks in housing rentals.
    I’ve waded through 1,021 pages of documents from that legal battle, and they are devastating. Donald Trump was then president of the family real estate firm, and the government amassed overwhelming evidence that the company had a policy of discriminating against blacks, including those serving in the military.
    To prove the discrimination, blacks were repeatedly dispatched as testers to Trump apartment buildings to inquire about vacancies, and white testers were sent soon after. Repeatedly, the black person was told that nothing was available, while the white tester was shown apartments for immediate rental.
    A former building superintendent working for the Trumps explained that he was told to code any application by a black person with the letter C, for colored, apparently so the office would know to reject it. A Trump rental agent said the Trumps wanted to rent only to “Jews and executives,” and discouraged renting to blacks.
    Donald Trump furiously fought the civil rights suit in the courts and the media, but the Trumps eventually settled on terms that were widely regarded as a victory for the government. Three years later, the government sued the Trumps again, for continuing to discriminate.
    In fairness, those suits date from long ago, and the discriminatory policies were probably put in place not by Donald Trump but by his father. Fred Trump appears to have been arrested at a Ku Klux Klan rally in 1927; Woody Guthrie, who lived in a Trump property in the 1950s, lambasted Fred Trump in recently discovered papers for stirring racial hatred.
    Yet even if Donald Trump inherited his firm’s discriminatory policies, he allied himself decisively in the 1970s housing battle against the civil rights movement.
    Another revealing moment came in 1989, when New York City was convulsed by the “Central Park jogger” case, a rape and beating of a young white woman. Five black and Latino teenagers were arrested.
    Trump stepped in, denounced Mayor Ed Koch’s call for peace and bought full-page newspaper ads calling for the death penalty. The five teenagers spent years in prison before being exonerated. In retrospect, they suffered a modern version of a lynching, and Trump played a part in whipping up the crowds.
    As Trump moved into casinos, discrimination followed. In the 1980s, according to a former Trump casino worker, Kip Brown, who was quoted by The New Yorker: “When Donald and Ivana came to the casino, the bosses would order all the black people off the floor. … They put us all in the back.”
    In 1991, a book by John O’Donnell, who had been president of the Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, quoted Trump as criticizing a black accountant and saying: “Black guys counting my money! I hate it. The only kind of people I want counting my money are short guys that wear yarmulkes every day. … I think that the guy is lazy. And it’s probably not his fault, because laziness is a trait in blacks. It really is, I believe that. It’s not anything they can control.” O’Donnell wrote that for months afterward, Trump pressed him to fire the black accountant, until the man resigned of his own accord.
    Trump eventually denied making those comments. But in 1997 in a Playboy interview, he conceded “the stuff O’Donnell wrote about me is probably true.”

    Tuesday, August 23, 2016

    Boko Haram Leader Is Wounded in Airstrike, Nigeria's Military Says

    "DAKAR, Senegal — The Nigerian military said on Tuesday that airstrikes had killed and wounded several top Boko Haram commanders in the Sambisa Forest in the country’s northeast, where militants have been hiding for months.

    Among the wounded was Abubakar Shekau, who took the helm of the group after the death of its founder in 2009, according to Col. Sani Usman, a military spokesman. The military’s attack took place on Friday.

    At least three other top commanders were killed in “the most unprecedented and spectacular air raid,” the military said in a news release."

    Friday, August 12, 2016

    Harassment Crisis Builds at Fox News, Despite Its Swift Response - The New York Times

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    "When the anchor Gretchen Carlson filed a bombshell lawsuit accusing the Fox News chairman Roger Ailes of sexual harassment, Fox’s corporate masters moved fast.

     

    A major law firm was hired to investigate. Two weeks later, Mr. Ailes was gone, ousted from the network he ran for two decades. Rupert Murdoch stepped in as chairman, sending a clear message: This is a fresh start.

     

    But the grim tales about life under Mr. Ailes keep coming. More women have come forward — the latest was a former daytime host, Andrea Tantaros — describing a culture of intimidation and misogyny, and telling of settlements they received to leave the network. Some of Mr. Ailes’s top deputies who remain in charge at Fox News have been accused of aiding his behavior. Inside the newsroom, employees are still on edge about what new stories might surface and which executives could be ensnared.

     

    If the Murdoch family wanted to leap ahead of this scandal, it is now at risk of falling behind. Some people at Fox News are asking if meaningful change can occur inside a workplace still stocked with loyalists to Mr. Ailes. “People are waiting to see,” one staff member said."

    Harassment Crisis Builds at Fox News, Despite Its Swift Response - The New York Times: ""

    Harassment Crisis Builds at Fox News, Despite Its Swift Response - The New York Times

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    "When the anchor Gretchen Carlson filed a bombshell lawsuit accusing the Fox News chairman Roger Ailes of sexual harassment, Fox’s corporate masters moved fast.
    A major law firm was hired to investigate. Two weeks later, Mr. Ailes was gone, ousted from the network he ran for two decades. Rupert Murdoch stepped in as chairman, sending a clear message: This is a fresh start.But the grim tales about life under Mr. Ailes keep coming. More women have come forward — the latest was a former daytime host, Andrea Tantaros — describing a culture of intimidation and misogyny, and telling of settlements they received to leave the network. Some of Mr. Ailes’s top deputies who remain in charge at Fox News have been accused of aiding his behavior. Inside the newsroom, employees are still on edge about what new stories might surface and which executives could be ensnared.If the Murdoch family wanted to leap ahead of this scandal, it is now at risk of falling behind. Some people at Fox News are asking if meaningful change can occur inside a workplace still stocked with loyalists to Mr. Ailes. “People are waiting to see,” one staff member said."Harassment Crisis Builds at Fox News, Despite Its Swift Response - The New York Times: “

     

    Wednesday, August 10, 2016

    Man climbs on trump tower in New York

    Donald Trump’s Tax-Return Dodge - The New Yorker

    If Donald Trump continues to stonewall on releasing his tax returns, it’s clear that he’s doing so because it’s his choice, not his legal obligation.





    "The law is clear about publicly releasing tax returns. The I.R.S. is prohibited from doing so, but taxpayers themselves have every right to disclose their own returns. Does the existence of an audit change the legal status of public disclosure? The answer is no; Trump can release the returns if he wants to. “He filed these tax returns under penalty of perjury with the I.R.S.,” Scott Michel, a partner at Caplin & Drysdale, a leading tax-law firm, said. “If he were to disclose the returns publicly, he’s not disclosing anything that the I.R.S. doesn’t already know about. A disclosure in and of itself cannot possibly prejudice or hurt him with his audit.”



    Donald Trump’s Tax-Return Dodge - The New Yorker

    From Trump’s controversial words, a pattern: Outrage, headlines and then denial - The Washington Post

    "From Trump’s controversial words, a pattern: Outrage, headlines and then denial"

    From Trump’s controversial words, a pattern: Outrage, headlines and then denial - The Washington Post: ""

    Further Into the Muck With Mr. Trump - The New York Times

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    "...Seldom, if ever, have Americans been exposed to a candidate so willing to descend to the depths of bigotry and intolerance as Mr. Trump. That he would make Tuesday’s comment amid sinking poll numbers and a wave of Republican defections suggests that when bathed in the adulation of a crowd, Mr. Trump is unable to control himself.
    Just eight years ago, Senator John McCain of Arizona, then the Republican presidential nominee, told a man at a town hall session who said he was “scared” of an Obama presidency that Mr. Obama “is a decent person and a person that you do not have to be scared as president of the United States.”
    Twenty minutes later, a woman told Mr. McCain that she couldn’t trust Mr. Obama because “he’s an Arab.” “No ma’am,” Mr. McCain replied. “He’s a decent family man, a citizen, that I just happen to have disagreements with on fundamental issues. And that’s what this campaign is all about.”
    Republicans would do well to summon the integrity that Mr. McCain showed in 2008, and not just to give some sense of decency to this ugly campaign. The time has come for Republicans — including Mr. McCain — to repudiate Mr. Trump once and for all."

    Further Into the Muck With Mr. Trump - The New York Times: ""

    Saturday, July 30, 2016

    What Makes People Feel Upbeat at Work - The New Yorker

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    "There was, of course, a perfectly sound legal reason for this seemingly odd decision. The ruling was the culmination of a series of charges that had been brought against the company in the course of several years, during which the N.L.R.B. struck down multiple T-Mobile policies that appeared to hamper union organization and other, more benign efforts to discuss employment practices. The wording in the employee manual regarding the ‘positive work environment,’ the board held, was ‘ambiguous and vague’ enough to have a chilling effect on the right of employees to speak freely and to organize, rights guaranteed under the National Labor Relations Act. Because the ‘positive work environment’ was never explicitly described, workers would have to err on the side of over-sensitivity—steering clear of ‘potentially controversial but protected communication in the workplace,’ as the ruling put it—lest they be punished."

    (Via.)  What Makes People Feel Upbeat at Work - The New Yorker:

    Hillary Clinton sees post-convention boost over Trump, but will it last? | US news | The Guardian

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    " A poll released on Saturday has given Hillary Clinton a 15-point lead over Donald Trump, suggesting the Democratic nominee for president is enjoying a significant post-convention boost."

    (Via.)  Hillary Clinton sees post-convention boost over Trump, but will it last? | US news | The Guardian:

    Donald Trump and Russia: a web that grows more tangled all the time | US news | The Guardian

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    "A key figure at the Republican national convention where Donald Trump was nominated for president has strong business ties with Ukraine, the Guardian has learned..

    The coordinator of the Washington diplomatic corps for the Republicans in Cleveland was Frank Mermoud, a former state department official involved in business ventures in Ukraine via Cub Energy, a Black Sea-focused oil and gas company of which he is a director. He is also on the board of the US Ukraine Business Council.

    Mermoud has longstanding ties to Trump’s campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, who in 2010 helped pro-Russia Viktor Yanukovych refashion his image and win a presidential election in Ukraine. Manafort was brought in earlier this year to oversee the convention operations and its staffing.

    Three sources at the convention also told the Guardian that they saw Philip Griffin, a long-time aide to Manafort in Kiev, working with the foreign dignitaries programme.

    ‘After years of working in the Ukraine for Paul and others, it was surprising to run into Phil working at the convention,’ one said.

    The change to the platform on arming Ukraine was condemned even by some Republicans. Senator Rob Portman of Ohio described it as ‘deeply troubling’. Veteran party operative and lobbyist Charlie Black said the ‘new position in the platform doesn’t have much support from Republicans’, adding that the change ‘was unusual’.

    (Via.)  Donald Trump and Russia: a web that grows more tangled all the time | US news | The Guardian:

    Electoral Map Gives Donald Trump Few Places to Go - The New York Times

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    "Even as Mr. Trump has ticked up in national polls in recent weeks, senior Republicans say his path to the 270 Electoral College votes needed for election has remained narrow — and may have grown even more precarious. It now looks exceedingly difficult for him to assemble even the barest Electoral College majority without beating Hillary Clinton in a trifecta of the biggest swing states: Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania.
     President Obama won all three states in 2008 and 2012, and no Republican has won Pennsylvania in nearly three decades.

    Electoral Map Gives Donald Trump Few Places to Go - The New York Times: ""

    Friday, July 29, 2016

    NYC DOT studying bringing Staten Island Ferry to Midtown - NY Daily News

     

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    "Staten Island’s seafaring commuters may get to sail to Midtown one day.

    The city Department of Transportation is studying the possibility of bringing the Staten Island Ferry to E. 34th St. in Manhattan, as well as Pier 11 near Wall St., according to a letter the agency sent to Staten Island Borough President James Oddo.

    “This could be an exciting opportunity,” Transportation Commissioner Polly Trottenberg wrote to Oddo in the July 28 letter. “But I agree with you that there are many hurdles that need to be analyzed including the need for additional new ferries and significant upgrades to the current terminal infrastructure.”

    Oddo in April requested in a letter to DOT that the agency into his suggestions to drop off passengers at ferry terminals on E. 34th St. and Wall St."

     

    NYC DOT studying bringing Staten Island Ferry to Midtown - NY Daily News: "

    Courts Crush Voter Suppression Just in Time for Election Day - An appeals court struck down North Carolina’s law for being designed to discriminate against blacks. It’s the third victory in a row for voting rights and sets up more wins before Nov. 8.- The Daily Beast

     

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    Courts Crush Voter Suppression Just in Time for Election Day - The Daily Beast: ""

     

     

     

     

    Wednesday, July 27, 2016

    Follow Trump’s Money to Moscow

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    The phrase “follow the money” is supposed to help explain human behavior, especially in politics. So why has Donald Trump embraced Russian President Vladimir Putin? Why has he denied the evidence of Putin’s killing of Russian journalists and dissidents? A savvy businessman, Trump is certainly not dumb. There must be something else to it.
    Reports dating back to 1987, during the time of the old Soviet Union, reveal that Trump has been seeking business in Russia and attempting to build a “Russian Trump Tower” in Moscow and perhaps other Russian cities.


    At this particular time in history, with Putin’s cronies under financial sanctions because of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Putin’s praise for Trump may signal another attempt to get the capitalists and their money back into Russia. Such a ploy depends on Trump and others rehabilitating Putin by claiming that he is fighting terrorism in Syria, not bolstering a long-time Soviet/Russian client state. Thanks to the effectiveness of the Russia Today (RT) channel, which saturates the U.S. media market, especially cable television, Putin is indeed looking like a statesman on the world stage.


    Trump’s relationship with Russia goes far back. In 1987, before the collapse of the Soviet Union, he was meeting with Soviet officials and negotiating the building of “luxury hotels” in Moscow and Leningrad. A story at the time said Trump had met Soviet Ambassador Yuri Dubinin, who mentioned how much his daughter had admired the “opulent” Trump Tower in New York City. This led to an invitation to Trump to visit the USSR. The story said Dubinin wrote a letter to Trump, who hosted a meeting with Soviet officials in New York.

    Follow Trump’s Money to Moscow: ""

    Monday, July 25, 2016

    Dozens Reported Dead, Injured in Knife Attack Outside Tokyo - The Atlantic





    "A knife attack outside Tokyo has left at least 15 people dead and 45 more wounded, according to Japanese media.



    The attack occurred at a facility for disabled individuals in the city of Sagamihara, located about 30 kilometers, or 20 miles, southwest of the Japanese capital, reported NHK, Japan’s national broadcaster.



    The knife-wielding attacker, a man in his 20s and a former employee at the facility, entered the building at about 2:30 a.m. local time, according to NHK. He turned himself into police about half an hour later.



    Sagamihara, located in the Kanazawa prefecture, is home to about 719,000 people, and is the fifth most populous suburb in greater Tokyo.



    It is early morning on Tuesday in Japan. This is a developing story, and we’ll update as we learn more."



    Dozens Reported Dead, Injured in Knife Attack Outside Tokyo - The Atlantic

    Thursday, July 21, 2016

    The 'real Americans' who made Trump GOP nominee

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    "But for many others, my view of America isn't something they agree with. For them, an American is very distinct kind of individual. First of all, white. That's really important to them. But also this real American has a certain ethos, analogous to a combination of the Marlboro Man, John Wayne, and Al Bundy topped off with a ladle full of Lawrence Welk. Real Americans have lost their voice and they need a leader. 
    Donald Trump is the man they chose to speak for them as he is a real American who shares their values. I believe we, the not-real Americans, should believe the real ones and respect their choice. Donald Trump speaks for them. Donald Trump represents them. Donald Trump is their leader, never to be owned by the rest of us.
    As we head towards the November election we should remember the people who will vote for Donald Trump and everything he stands for: White Supremacy. Male dominance. Authoritarianism. "Real Americans" will vote for that."

    The 'real Americans' who made Trump GOP nominee: ""

    (Via.)

    Teachers Rely on Primary Resources, Not Textbooks, To Bring Black Lives Matter Into the Classroom - The Atlantic

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    This is crucial. Students must learn current events and analyze them as they happen to they can develop the skills necessary to be able to predict how they will play out in the future. 

    "If the Chicago social-studies teacher Gregory Michie waits for a textbook to teach his students about the Black Lives Matter movement, the first seventh-graders to hear the lesson won’t be born for another seven years.

     

    Despite the historical implications of that movement, bureaucratic timelines all but quash any possibility that students might learn about today’s events from an actual history textbook in the near future. According to Anthony Pellegrino, an assistant professor of education at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville, many school districts receive new books on a seven-year cycle. However, in some states, schools don’t receive new books for 10 to 12 years, and the most current material in those books could be a few years old. Certainly digital textbooks shorten this timeframe, but physical copies lag far behind: In some districts like Michie’s, students are reading textbooks that don’t even contain the name Barack Obama.

     

    On top of that, the chapters on America’s most recent history often fall short. Because content on, say, the American Revolution, has been read and edited over the course of multiple book editions, more recent chapters often “feel like just add-ons.” Pellegrino said. “They're so afraid to tackle anything current because we don't have the perspective of history to be able to inform us more. As such, the sentences, the words, the paragraphs, are just really vapid.”

    Teachers Rely on Primary Resources, Not Textbooks, To Bring Black Lives Matter Into the Classroom - The Atlantic: ""

    (Via.)

    It's Official: Hillary Clinton Is Running Against Vladimir Putin - The Atlantic

     

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    "The Republican nominee for president, Donald J. Trump, has chosen this week to unmask himself as a de facto agent of Russian President Vladimir Putin, a KGB-trained dictator who seeks to rebuild the Soviet empire by undermining the free nations of Europe, marginalizing NATO, and ending America’s reign as the world’s sole superpower.

    I am not suggesting that Donald Trump is employed by Putin—though his campaign manager, Paul Manafort, was for many years on the payroll of the Putin-backed former president of Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovych. I am arguing that Trump’s understanding of America’s role in the world aligns with Russia’s geostrategic interests; that his critique of American democracy is in accord with the Kremlin’s critique of American democracy; and that he shares numerous ideological and dispositional proclivities with Putin—for one thing, an obsession with the sort of ‘strength’ often associated with dictators. Trump is making it clear that, as president, he would allow Russia to advance its hegemonic interests across Europe and the Middle East. "

    (Via.)  It's Official: Hillary Clinton Is Running Against Vladimir Putin - The Atlantic:

    Islamophobes, White Supremacists, and Gays for Trump—the Alt-Right Arrives at the RNC | The Nation

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    " At the self-described ‘most fab party at the RNC’ Tuesday night, Islamophobe provocateur Pamela Geller, not renowned as a stand-up comedian, opened with a joke.

    ‘A jihadi walks into a bar. The bartender says ‘What’ll you have?’ The jihadi says: ‘Shots for everyone!’’

    The friendly crowd guffawed, then leaned in for one of Geller’s trademark anti-Islam stemwinders. But there was a twist. In a tank top adorned with a rainbow and the words ‘Love wins,’ Geller came to join gay conservative, anti-feminist bad boy Milo Yiannopoulos in launching a new alliance, uniting gays and right-wing, anti-Muslim activists (Yiannopoulos is both). In the wake of the Orlando nightclub massacre, they think it’s a natural. Killer Omar Mateen claimed the shooting as a blow for ISIS, though it probably had more to do with his own tortured sexual identity and history of mental problems than with his Muslim background. But Tuesday night’s event denounced the liberal establishment that one speaker claimed ‘cares more about the rights of Muslims than murdered gay people.’ Orlando, this alliance argues, was just the first shot in a coming Muslim crusade against LGBT Americans, and gays should know who their real allies are. To Geller and Yiannopoulous, they include Donald Trump, the man Yiannopolous playfully calls ‘Daddy.’

    "

    (Via.)   Islamophobes, White Supremacists, and Gays for Trump—the Alt-Right Arrives at the RNC | The Nation:

    Donald Trump Threatens the Ghostwriter of “The Art of the Deal” - The New Yorker

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    "When Tony Schwartz, Donald Trump’s ghostwriter for his 1987 memoir ‘The Art of the Deal,’ decided to tell the public about his concerns that Trump isn’t fit to serve as President, his main worry was that Trump, who is famously litigious, would threaten to take legal action against him. Schwartz’s premonition has proved correct.

    On Monday, July 18th, the day that this magazine published my interview with Schwartz, and hours after Schwartz appeared on ‘Good Morning America’ to voice his concerns about Trump’s ‘impulsive and self-centered’ character, Jason D. Greenblatt, the general counsel and vice-president of the Trump Organization, issued a threatening cease-and-desist letter to Schwartz. (You can read the full letter at the bottom of this post.) In it, Greenblatt accuses Schwartz—who has likened his writing of the flattering book to putting ‘lipstick on the pig’ —of making ‘defamatory statements’ about the Republican nominee and claiming that he, not Trump, wrote the book, ‘thereby exposing’ himself to ‘liability for damages and other tortious harm.’

    “  Donald Trump Threatens the Ghostwriter of “The Art of the Deal” - The New Yorker:

    (Via.)

    Tuesday, July 12, 2016

    South China Sea: Tribunal backs case against China brought by Philippines - BBC News

    Chinese dredging vessels are purportedly seen in the waters around Mischief Reef in the disputed Spratly Islands



    "An international tribunal has ruled against Chinese claims to rights in the South China Sea, backing a case brought by the Philippines.

    The Permanent Court of Arbitration said there was no evidence that China had historically exercised exclusive control over the waters or resources.
    China called the ruling "ill-founded" and says it will not be bound by it.
    China claims almost all of the South China Sea, including reefs and islands also claimed by others.
    The tribunal in The Hague said China had violated the Philippines' sovereign rights. It also said China had caused "severe harm to the coral reef environment" by building artificial islands."

    South China Sea: Tribunal backs case against China brought by Philippines - BBC News