Category Archives: Just strange

Donald Trump blasts aide at centre of Russia probe George Papadopoulos as a ‘proven liar’ – Donald Trump’s America – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Mr Trump sought to dismiss George Papadopoulos, who has provided key evidence in the first criminal case connecting Mr Trump’s team to alleged intermediaries for Russia’s Government.”Few people knew the young, low level volunteer named George, who has already proven to be a liar. Check the DEMS!” Mr Trump tweeted. Mr Trump had called Mr Papadopoulos an “excellent guy” last March and tweeted a picture with him at a “national security meeting” in Washington.

Source: Donald Trump blasts aide at centre of Russia probe George Papadopoulos as a ‘proven liar’ – Donald Trump’s America – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Firm restoring Puerto Rico’s power threatened to quit, mayor says | World news | The Guardian – “#TraitorTrump’s people are all about graft and greed at other people’s expense.”

Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz had demanded greater transparency over the $300m deal secured by Whitefish Energy, a tiny two-year-old firm based in the Montana home town of the US interior secretary, Ryan Zinke.

Source: Firm restoring Puerto Rico’s power threatened to quit, mayor says | World news | The Guardian

Whitefish had only two full-time employees when Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico on 20 September, killing more than 50 people and knocking out power to the whole island. The company has since contracted more than 300 workers, but three-quarters of the US territory remains without electricity.

Trump call controversy: Darcy cartoon | cleveland.com

There are multiple times and ways this controversy could have been avoided. *Trump was only asked by a reporter why the The White House hadn’t made a statement about the soldiers deaths in Niger.   Unsolicited, Trump started talking about writing letters to the families of the soldiers and comparing himself to Obama. All Trump need to do is express sympathy for the loss of life and then say they don’t want to comment until they have full information. * When Trump’s call was placed on speaker phone. Rep. Wilson could have suggested it be taken off speaker phone out of respect that Trump thought it was a private call and it should be. * After a reporter asked Wilson what Trump said.  Rep. Wilson could have, and probably should have told the reporter that the conversation was intended to be private and she wanted to respect that. * When Wilson  and Johnson’s mother said Trump had disrespected them, either Trump or the White House, should have made a public statement sating they regretted Trump’s message being misconstrued, and then salute Sgt. Johnson’s service and reaffirm the nations deepest sympathies. Instead, Trump and the White House went into attack more, prolonging the controversy. Parents of another soldier who lost their son, echoed something Chief of Staff Kelly said about his own experience.  More meaningful than a letter or phone call from the president, the parents said, was getting letters and phone calls from their son’s friends and fellow soldiers, who knew and fought alongside them.

Source: Trump call controversy: Darcy cartoon | cleveland.com

Twitter and White Supremacy, A Love Story | Dame Magazine – does anyone need another reason to leave Twitter? Encourage celebrities to leave as well!

Indeed, the kind of harassment Leslie Jones faced is exactly what Black women have had to deal with on Twitter, day-in, and day-out, for years.  But without the prominence of being Leslie Jones, one doesn’t get the benefit of personal intervention from Jack Dorsey.“It’s the gamificiation of hate,” says author Mikki Kendall. “I was going to leave Twitter at one point. It just wasn’t usable for me. I would log on and have 2,500 negative comments. One guy who seemed to have an inexhaustible energy would Photoshop my image on top of lynching pictures and tell me I should be ‘raped by dogs,’ that kind of thing.” When Kendall was living in Tennessee, she says she received a picture of her and her family in a photo that “looked like it had been sighted through a rifle.” She was also doxxed—that is, had her address posted online. She moved shortly thereafter. “I had two minor children in my home then. I had to do something different.” She lives on the southside of Chicago now and says she feels much safer.  “No one’s going to come for me here. If they do, I’d like to watch them try.”Kendall has been deft at figuring out tech-savvy ways to both document and battle online harassment. She did a “race swap” experiment with a white guy—they traded Twitter avatars. “For me, it was like, Oh my God, it’s so quiet! People told me how smart I was and perceptive,” she says. Kendall has also figured out how to turn the tables on the algorithms by coding her own auto-blockers that sniff out potentially harmful Twitter accounts and blocks them.When I asked her why she thought Twitter wasn’t more responsive to reports of abuse on the site, she said, “Being a white guy on Twitter is a whole other world. I think that what’s happening with Jack and Biz (Twitter executives) is they’re experiencing a whole other Twitter.”White supremacists have used Twitter to target Jews, as well, in ways both banal and life-threatening. In June 2016 several highly visible Jewish political reporters began to report a barrage of online harassment that involved a symbolic gesture: triple parentheses placed around their names, like (((this))). The ADL added the triple parentheses to their catalog of hateful symbols. One report called them “the digital equivalent of a yellow star,” intended to separate Jews from the rest of the population and pave the way for worse.

Source: Twitter and White Supremacy, A Love Story | Dame Magazine

Automation: A woman’s place is in the home – at least according to AI… | In English | EL PAÍS

Researchers at Virginia University have released a report confirming a frequent criticism – that far from avoiding human prejudices, artificial intelligence compounds them.The investigation focused on two image banks commonly used to train computers to process images. In 33% of the photos of people cooking, the cooks were men. Following attempts to “train” the computer in recognition, the software continued to believe that 84% were women and only 16% were men.“We know that technology fed on big data can enhance prejudice because the prejudice is implicit in the data,” according to the report. The research shows that if sexual discrimination exists in the original data, predictive technology will identify and highlight it.

Source: Automation: A woman’s place is in the home – at least according to AI… | In English | EL PAÍS

 Rohingya crisis: UN ‘suppressed’ report predicting its shortcomings in Myanmar | Global development | The Guardian {“Why is this such an issue now and why past/present killings/oppression of Shia and Sufi is not a pressing ‘issue’?” Oh yes, Myanmar is not a major oil producer – silly me. And US and Britain can pretend to care about Muslims in a non-oil-ally state. Duh! All the killings and oppression should be opposed!}

In little more than a month, more than half a million Rohingya have fled over the border to Bangladesh amid allegations of massacres by Myanmar’s armed forces and Rohingya insurgents. On Thursday Bangladesh announced that it would build one of the world’s biggest refugee camps to house all those who have sought asylum.

Source: Rohingya crisis: UN ‘suppressed’ report predicting its shortcomings in Myanmar | Global development | The Guardian

‘African’ drumming, the homogenisation of a continent – Media Diversified “Ethnic Elitism and Racism – so Lame and Easy Cultural Appropriation – Let’s have a drum circle tonight!

Ever heard the term ‘European string ensemble’, though? Probably not – because it doesn’t really mean much. Are we talking about a group of violins? Guitars? Contrabasses? A mixture of these and more?This brings me to my question – why are we still talking about ‘African drumming ensembles’?Consider the many different cultures and 54 countries that make up Africa. From the Habesha in the East, Arabs in the North, Twi in the West and Zulu in the South, the various languages and cultures number into the thousands. To put things into perspective, there are more languages spoken in Nigeria (520) alone than in the whole of Europe put together (28 official) (Ethnologue, 2017).

Source: ‘African’ drumming, the homogenisation of a continent – Media Diversified

‘Leave UK immediately’: scientist is latest victim of Home Office blunder | UK news | The Guardian – A Prequel to what Trump would like to see in US?

Danaie holds Canadian-Iranian joint citizenship. He is an electron microscopy scientist who has worked since October 2016 at Diamond Light Source, the UK’s national synchrotron, based at Harwell science and innovation campus in Oxfordshire. He has a work visa valid until September 2019 and previously worked at Oxford University’s department of materials.Danaie went public with his case after the Guardian highlighted the introduction of “hostile environment” immigration status bank account checks last week, and following an assessment by the chief inspector of borders that there was a 10% error rate in Home Office records used for some forms of enforcement action.“I happen to be in that 10% statistic. Despite having a valid work visa, I received this letter,” he said. “It hurts on so many levels. They even have a typo in my name. Such disarray is astonishing in an office responsible for security.”

Source: ‘Leave UK immediately’: scientist is latest victim of Home Office blunder | UK news | The Guardian

Germany: AfD Accuses Google of Sabotaging Campaign – SPIEGEL ONLINE _ Google says no to hate ads, so on to Facebook and Twitter to target hate and racist political messages!

As part of its digital campaign strategy, AfD has even brought on American consultants with the Harris Media advertising agency. The Texas consulting firm specializes in customers with “controversial” messages who range from Donald Trump and the gun lobby to France’s far-right Front National. Their task is to adapt Kunkel’s print campaign for the digital world. Two Harris employees have also embedded themselves in the digital “war room” inside the AfD’s national headquarters in Berlin.But it appears that the American pros are running into hurdles — with one of the most important advertising platforms around. Officials with AfD have complained that Google is blocking large parts of its advertising campaign. “We aren’t having difficulties with any other platform,” said campaign manager Kunkel. He said that Facebook and Twitter are treating AfD like a normal customer. “But Google is sabotaging us, creating a disadvantage for us relative to our political competition.”Dividing the Pie Between Google, Facebook and TwitterThe dispute shines a spotlight on the role the U.S. Internet giants are playing in the current German election. For the first time, the criteria used by major American internet platforms to decide on what paid political content can be disseminated to their users — and what cannot — is playing a central role in a German election.

Source: Germany: AfD Accuses Google of Sabotaging Campaign – SPIEGEL ONLINE