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RainCaster

Profile Information

Gender: Male
Home country: USA
Current location: Left Coast
Member since: Mon Oct 10, 2016, 06:19 PM
Number of posts: 6,403

About Me

A Reformed Republican who has seen evil and shook its hand. (Nixon) He now spends his time trying to change the world for the better.

Journal Archives

The coming events

I stopped at the grocery on the way home tonight. There is a Seahawks game (NFL) tonight, and I needed snacks for that. I picked up a few more for the Wednesday events as well. At the cashiers line, I had several people ask why I needed so many chips & other things for one football game. My explanation was that there is two more major events this week and each will require a significant quantity of beer. Then I reminded them of the impeachment hearings on Wednesday & Friday. Several replied with words similar to "its a bad week to stop drinking".

Have any TV networks promised gavel-to-gavel impeachment coverage?

Where can I watch this fabulous popcorn fest?

8chan reemerges as "8kun" but can't keep its new website online

Source: Arstechnica

"Not sure how long we will be able to stay online with clearnet due to activists trying to deplatform us, and hackers preparing to ddos us. The tor hidden service should remain available regardless," Watkins wrote on Twitter Saturday. 8kun was also available on Loki, which Watkins described as an experimental alternative to Tor.

FURTHER READING
Dumped by Cloudflare, 8chan gets back online—then gets kicked off again
8kun is using Tucows as its registrar, and a Vice report says that 8kun's hosting service is the Russia-based Media Land LLC. Media Land was recently described as a "bulletproof hosting service" by security reporter Brian Krebs. It's not clear if the 8kun administrators found a full replacement for Cloudflare's anti-DDoS services.

"We have been under sustained attacks the past few days and doing everything we can to get things stable again," Watkins wrote on Twitter today, shortly before the site went down again. "The site is still online—albeit limping along—as we reorganize and restructure to deflect attacks coming from many angles."

...

8chan temporarily got back online in early August, shortly after losing Cloudflare service. 8chan switched its website to a provider called BitMitigate, the same company that began serving the Daily Stormer after Cloudflare cut it off. But that didn't last long, either, as BitMitigate's cloud infrastructure provider decided to shut off BitMitigate's service.

Read more: https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2019/11/8chan-gets-back-online-and-is-promptly-forced-off-again/



It looks like hate speech on the internet is not welcomed by the uber-geeks. Makes my day.

Verdict- Go Big, Democrats: Attempts to Rig Elections Are Not the Only Impeachable Offenses

This is an op-ed piece in the Verdict, written by Neil H. Buchanan

This legal scholar posts some very wise arguments for the "take no prisoners" approach to impeachment. Read the entire article- it's short and worth the time.

The Strategic Case for Minimalism Does Not Ultimately Hold Up
...
It might be possible that one article of impeachment can be stripped down to the very minimum for Democrats to defend, but that will then leave them open to the claim from Republicans that there is not enough substance to the case against Trump to remove him from office. “This is all you have? That’s nuthin’—and certainly not enough to end a presidency!”

In the end, the Democrats might be talking themselves into a strategy that leaves them without a “simple and clean” case even as they opt not to pursue the strongest possible case against Donald Trump. As so often happens, focusing on the clever public relations-friendly approach might well be a fools’ errand that would have catastrophic consequences.
...
The Substantive Case for Minimalism Is Irresponsible and Wrong
...
This, not to pull any punches, is simply bonkers. Before exploring why, I will note that The Times’s editors did make the good point that the Democrats had no choice but to pursue impeachment once it became clear that Trump was trying to rig next year’s election. If impeachment is for nothing else, they point out, it must be used in situations in which the President is committing impeachable offenses that stop him from being held accountable by voters.

Fair enough, but impeachment is not “for nothing else.” Impeachable offenses – treason, bribery, and high crimes and misdemeanors – should not simply be tolerated until the next election so long as that election will be fair. What if the President commits treason or accepts bribes but does not rig an election? And what if he shows every indication that he will keep committing those offenses – and also that he will begin to pardon all of his partners in crime?

Trump administration sues CA over state climate pact with Quebec

Source: Aljazeera

Last month, Trump said he is revoking California's power to set vehicle-emissions standards that are tougher than those demanded by federal regulations, portraying the move as a "win for consumers".

Environmentalists argue that Trump's rules will accelerate climate change, and that emissions rules improve fuel economy, in turn lowering consumer costs.

Also last month, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sent a letter to California officials saying the state is not taking adequate steps to fix air quality problems, putting in jeopardy billions of dollars in federal funding for transportation projects.

Hundreds of former EPA employees are calling for a congressional probe into whether the agency's feud with California represents retaliation for the state's failure to support Trump's political agenda.

Read more: https://www.aljazeera.com/ajimpact/trump-administration-sues-ca-state-climate-pact-quebec-191023141029576.html



While his administration says that international treaties are the exclusive right of the feds, he sends his personal attorney to Ukraine to bypass the State Department and many decades of consistent diplomacy.

"Fake News" can be a game, and it teaches us to become more discerning

One my my daily tech reads gave us this interesting article about gamifying memes and the trolling of social media. It states that after only playing such games for 15 minutes, the participants become more resilient to the BS that Russia's troll farms are spewing at us daily.


Half of the battle against disinformation campaigns is educating people about how they work. And that's why the Finnish public broadcasting company Yle—Finland's equivalent of the BBC—has created a game called Troll Factory. The game, which recently won the European Journalism Centre and Google News Initiative's Global Youth and News Media Prize for promoting media literacy, puts the player in the role of a disinformation operative working for an Internet Research Agency-like organization with an anti-immigrant agenda.

The gamification of education on disinformation campaigns has been shown to help build up a resistance to fake news in the past. The University of Cambridge conducted a study in 2018 using a browser game called "Bad News" and found that completing the 15-minute game increased "psychological resistance" to fake news on social media, reducing the perceived credibility of fake news headlines by an average of 21 percent across 15,000 participants.

Troll Factory takes Bad News' approach a step further by using real samples of memes, conspiracy theories, and fake news articles used in such campaigns that infect social media and heighten the polarization of public discourse around the world—and in the US and Western Europe in particular. With the increasing reliance on social media for news, Yle's interactive team sought to create more awareness of how weaponized social media has become and more understanding among social media users of how they could be drawn into unintentionally spreading false information.
...
The result can be somewhat eye-opening for those who haven't tracked disinformation campaigns. "People have described Troll Factory experience to be 'scary awful' but informative and enlightening," Koponen said, "something that's needed in order to illustrate the reality, motives, intentions and potential effects, of different forms of information operations."

Protecting Whistle-blowers from DFT and his minions

The costumes and voice tweaking done to those on the Masked Singer TV show would be a natural for an appearance before Congress.

For those who detest Facebook

True confession- I'm among them.

So the EU has decided that when the EU orders a take-down of any information, it must be done world wide and not just in the requesting country. OK- that seems like a simple thing to do and a very reasonable request. Except that FB has purposely designed their network to make this very difficult. Damn. I feel so sad for those arrogant crooks.

There's a shit-ton more at the link, along with the PDF of the ruling. Well worth looking at if you are involved in any way with a social network and it's design. You may have similar requirement soon.


EU nations can force Facebook to remove content worldwide, court rules
The ruling could let EU nations override other countries' own laws, critics say.

The ruling (PDF) stems from a case that began in Austria three years ago. A Facebook user posted comments about an Austrian politician, Eva Glawischnig-Piesczek, that Austrian courts found to be illegally defamatory. Glawischnig-Piesczek in 2016 wrote to Facebook Ireland, the company's EU headquarters, asking the company to delete the comments and limit access to them globally. Facebook refused, Glawischnig-Piesczek sued, and the results of the years of legal wrangling are out today.

A service is not liable for information it's hosting "if it has no knowledge of its illegal nature or if it acts expeditiously to remove or disable access" to the illegal content as soon as it becomes aware of it, the court said; the United States operates under a similar standard. The EU's directive on electronic commerce also "prohibits any requirement for the host provider," meaning a company such as Facebook, "to monitor generally information which it stores or to seek actively facts or circumstances indicating illegal activity," the court said.

FURTHER READING
Google wins case as court rules “right to be forgotten” is EU-only
But that directive does not preclude an EU member nation from ordering a service to remove or block access to content that is identical or equivalent to content that has been deemed unlawful in the past, the court ruled. Nations can require, the court said, the use of automated technologies and filters to make it happen. Crucially, the directive also does not prohibit EU member nations from requiring platforms to remove or block access to such information worldwide, "within the framework of the relevant international law."

The globe-spanning ruling is the opposite approach the court took less than two weeks ago in a different case, when it held that the so-called right to be forgotten under EU law does not require Google to make certain information inaccessible to the world beyond European borders.

Let's send DFT to Katmandu

I'm a long time Bob Seger fan, and I was listening to Silver Bullet today when Katmandu came on. I found this version on U-tub for all to appreciate:


What is Finland's policy on dealing with corrupt nation-states?

During DFT's tirade with the Reuters reporter ("You talkin' ta me?", he insisted that the reporter ask the Finnish president a question. I was really hoping he would ask a question similar to the one above.

While our press is getting a bit better at pushing back, they still have a long way to go, and they do not have to give any respect to the Tangerine Shart Cannon. He has been spewing nothing but hatred at the MSM, and he needs to feel their rather, not only in the printed pages, but in his personal interactions.

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