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Member since: Fri Sep 17, 2004, 03:59 PM
Number of posts: 67,808

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Amazing video has emerged of an orca swimming underneath paddleboarder off the coast of New Zealand

An amazing video has emerged of an orca swimming underneath a paddleboarder off the coast of New Zealand on Monday. The once-in-a-lifetime footage, captured off Kuaotunu beach, shows the killer whale swimming right next to boarder Luke Reilly.

Interviewed by a local news organisation about the experience, Riley said: “This one just bee-lined it for me. He popped up about 10cm away from the back of my board.”


Holy Shit. This Is How the Duggars' Homeschooling Curriculum Allegedly Dealt With Sexual Abuse.


France to force big supermarkets to give unsold food to charities

Source: The Guardian

France to force big supermarkets to give unsold food to charities
Legislation barring stores from spoiling and throwing away food is aimed at tackling epidemic of waste alongside food poverty

French supermarkets will be banned from throwing away or destroying unsold food and must instead donate it to charities or for animal feed, under a law set to crack down on food waste.

The French national assembly voted unanimously to pass the legislation as France battles an epidemic of wasted food that has highlighted the divide between giant food firms and people who are struggling to eat.

As MPs united in a rare cross-party consensus, the centre-right deputy Yves Jégo told parliament: “There’s an absolute urgency – charities are desperate for food. The most moving part of this law is that it opens us up to others who are suffering.”

Supermarkets will be barred from deliberately spoiling unsold food so it cannot be eaten. Those with a footprint of 4,305 sq ft (400 sq m) or more will have to sign contracts with charities by July next year or face penalties including fines of up to €75,000 (£53,000) or two years in jail.

Read more: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/may/22/france-to-force-big-supermarkets-to-give-away-unsold-food-to-charity

OBAMA Loses KRUGMAN On TPP: "As I see it, the big problem here is one of trust."

Trade and Trust
MAY 22, 2015

Paul Krugman

"As I see it, the big problem here is one of trust.

International economic agreements are, inevitably, complex, and you don’t want to find out at the last minute — just before an up-or-down, all-or-nothing vote — that a lot of bad stuff has been incorporated into the text. So you want reassurance that the people negotiating the deal are listening to valid concerns, that they are serving the national interest rather than the interests of well-connected corporations."

Instead of addressing real concerns, however, the Obama administration has been dismissive, trying to portray skeptics as uninformed hacks who don’t understand the virtues of trade. But they’re not: the skeptics have on balance been more right than wrong about issues like dispute settlement, and the only really hackish economics I’ve seen in this debate is coming from supporters of the trade pact.

It’s really disappointing and disheartening to see this kind of thing from a White House that has, as I said, been quite forthright on other issues. And the fact that the administration evidently doesn’t feel that it can make an honest case for the Trans-Pacific Partnership suggests that this isn’t a deal we should support.


George W. Bush didn't just lie about the Iraq War. What he did was much worse.

George W. Bush didn't just lie about the Iraq War. What he did was much worse.
Paul Waldman

What the Bush administration launched in 2002 and 2003 may have been the most comprehensive, sophisticated, and misleading campaign of government propaganda in American history. Spend too much time in the weeds, and you risk missing the hysterical tenor of the whole campaign.

In 2008, the Center for Public Integrity completed a project in which they went over the public statements by eight top Bush administration officials on the topic of Iraq, and found that no fewer than 935 were false, including 260 statements by President Bush himself. But the theory on which the White House operated was that whether or not you could fool all of the people some of the time, you could certainly scare them out of their wits. That's what was truly diabolical about their campaign.

[Each and every time the message was the same: If we didn't wage war, Iraq was going to attack the United States homeland with its enormous arsenal of ghastly weapons, and who knows how many Americans would perish. When you actually spell it out like that it sounds almost comical, but that was the Bush administration's assertion, repeated hundreds upon hundreds of time to a public still skittish in the wake of September 11. (Remember, the campaign for the war began less than a year after the September 11 attacks.)

Sometimes this message was imparted with specific false claims, sometimes with dark insinuation, and sometimes with speculation about the horrors to come ("We don't want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud," said Bush and others when asked about the thinness of much of their evidence). Yet the conclusion was always the same: The only alternative to invading Iraq was waiting around to be killed.


By playing incessantly to their fears, Bush also succeeded in turning Americans against each other--anyone who raised his or her voice to question the threat became part of the threat in the eyes of their fellow Americans. After all, if you're terrified of something, and you know by God the threat is real, someone next to you telling you not to worry, or worse, ignore the danger, becomes as bad as the enemy.

This is what Bush (and Cheney) knowingly did to the American people. He counted on their fear, not just Americans' fear of Hussein, but of each other. Iraq became a "life or death" decision. It didn't matter to him that their fear was generated completely by lies--all he needed was the fear. It was a classic exercise in propaganda and, terror inflicted on a vulnerable and scarred American public, the implicit threat always looming, hammered home day after day to get the war he and his cronies desperately wanted. And all of it deliberate:

This is one of the many sins for which Bush and those who supported him ought to spend a lifetime atoning. He looked out at the American public and decided that the way to get what he wanted was to terrify them. If he could convince them that any day now their children would die a horrible death, that they and everything they knew would be turned to radioactive ash, and that the only chance of averting this fate was to say yes to him, then he could have his war. Lies were of no less value than truth, so long as they both created enough fear.



Obscure Government Document Shows Elizabeth WARREN Is Right About TPP.

An Obscure Government Document Shows Elizabeth Warren Is Right About The TPP
"This is not a trade agreement. It's about intellectual property and dispute settlement."


The Obama administration is arguing that the deal is instead about trade and increasing American exports abroad. They have set up a web page on the U.S. Trade Representative's (USTR) site listing the benefits of exports from each of the fifty states in order to argue for the Trans-Pacific agreement.

Yet an obscure government document put out by that very same office makes Warren's case for her. The office puts out an annual report on “foreign trade barriers” around the world, going country by country to list complaints the U.S. government has about their laws with respect to commerce. If you read the 2015 report, you'll quickly see that many of the complaints are about laws designed to promote environment, labor, and anti-monopolistic practices – and relate only vaguely to the larger issue of trade and tariffs. The complaints seem more focused around opposing regulations that restrict the rights of multi-national corporations and their investors.

The introduction to the report lists a number of regulations that the USTR lists as “trade barriers”; these include “sanitary and phytosanitary measures” and “lack of intellectual property protection.” This would potentially open up the the USTR to considering, say, MP3 file sharing or a food safety law as trade barriers.

Let's look at just a few of the specific “barriers” they cite:

FOOD SAFETY: The USTR report repeatedly criticizes measures countries are taking related to food safety. In Argentina, the USTR is critical of a requirement that U.S. pork be shipped frozen or tested for trichnosis. In Guatemala, the report objects to Guatemala's practice of fumigating 90 percent of U.S. agricultural products that are imported, saying these fumigrations “increase the cost of U.S. agricultural exports to Guatemala.” Hong Kong recently passed a code banning marketing of infant formula to children up to three years old, the USTR says it is “continuing to engage” with the government on that particular measure, questioning whether it is “more restrictive than relevant international standards.”

GMOs: The USTR frequently complains about countries limiting food derived from biotech crops. The report complains that “India's biotech rules have not been notified to the WTO.” South Korea's system for approving of biotech goods is “redundant” and leading to “disruptions to exports of U.S. biotech products.” Kuwait's relatively new system to label biotech goods is listed as a barrier to trade.

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY: The report complains that the “scope of patentable subject matter is extremely restricted under Argentine law,” referencing “innovators in pharmaceutical and agricultural chemical sectors” – which is a way of saying pharmaceutical companies don't have enough right to declare patent monopolies and control the prices of their drugs. With regards to Chile, the USTR complains that there is “inadequate legal basis” to sue for infringement of copyright.

None of this is to say that labor, environmental, health, and other regulations are not sometimes used as inadvertent trade barriers to protect industries from competition. Take, for example, the U.S. ban on Canadian pharmaceutical drugs, which mostly serves to enrich our own domestic industry. It does show, however, that our “trade” agreements are increasingly about protecting corporate rights by taking aim at laws protecting the public interest, not increasing actual trade and exports.

the rest:

Video of white student explaining US crime shows perfectly how cable news keeps racism alive

Video of ignorant white student explaining US crime shows perfectly how cable news keeps racism alive

“We give them Medicare, and we give them Medicaid, and we give them free schooling,” a teenage girl explains to the class. “And we give them all that free stuff, and then you hear on the news how immigrants are going back over to ISIS to fight against us. When we’re giving them free stuff.”

After being challenged on her beliefs, the girl returns to television news as a defense.

“You hear on the news — pretty much every single person that I hear on the news that has mugged somebody, assaulted somebody, killed somebody. It’s Mexican, Somalia, black.”

“I can pull up at least 10 people that are white right now that have done that,” another student replies.


A good many Republican presidential candidates posed for pictures with a child molester







Do as I say, not as I do. That particular idiom about hypocrisy is especially true if you're a Republican espousing "family values." A good example of this occurred yesterday when the media obtained a 2006 police report indicating that Josh Duggar, the oldest son of TLC’s 19 Kids and Counting Duggar family, molested at least five underage girls when he was a teenager. And some of the victims were his sisters. Duggar, his wife and his parents released separate statements admitting to the charges, while also saying he "acted inexcusably" and mentioning God in almost every other sentence.


Police Report:

OBAMA Fires Back At GOP Blaming HIM Rather Than Themselves For Instability In Iraq

Obama........ responded to Republicans, including Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R), who blamed Obama for the current instability in Iraq.

"I’m very clear on the lessons of Iraq. I think it was a mistake for us to go in in the first place, despite the incredible efforts that were made by our men and women in uniform," Obama responded. "Despite that error, those sacrifices allowed the Iraqis to take back their country. That opportunity was squandered by Prime Minister Maliki and the unwillingness to reach out effectively to the Sunni and Kurdish populations."


Obama said he is committed to assisting Iraqi security forces to help them secure and stabilize the country.

"But we can’t do it for them, and one of the central flaws I think of the decision back in 2003 was the sense that if we simply went in and deposed a dictator, or simply went in and cleared out the bad guys, that somehow peace and prosperity would automatically emerge, and that lesson we should have learned a long time ago," he told The Atlantic.


“He told me, ‘Just as I killed your son, I can kill you, too’

Brazil, Fed Up With Crime, Grudgingly Accepts Police Violence

Killings of children by the police in neighborhoods like Complexo do Alemão, in Rio de Janeiro, have not prompted a significant shift in policing methods. Credit Mauricio Lima for The New York Times

RIO DE JANEIRO — Eduardo de Jesus was on his doorstep in Complexo do Alemão, a vast maze here of cinder block homes, when his mother heard the loud blast of gunfire.

Seconds later, she saw Eduardo, 10, lying dead from a gunshot wound to the head, and she ran toward the police officer holding the gun.

“I grabbed him by the vest and yelled, ‘You killed my boy, you wretch,’  ” said his mother, Terezinha Maria de Jesus, 40.

“He told me, ‘Just as I killed your son, I can kill you, too,’ as he pointed his rifle at my head,” she continued. “I told him: ‘Go ahead. You just killed part of me. Take the rest.’”


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