Sunday, April 23, 2017

Sad & Heartening: The North Korean TV Star Standing Up To Kim Jong-Un

The thin line separating Wellesley Editorial And Berkeley Street Fighting

Via David

On campuses and progressive enclaves, riots and violence against “offensive” speech are being normalized.
 The student editors at the Wellesley College (Hillary’s alma mater) student newspaper wrote an editorial recently that rightly is getting much criticism and mockery.

The Editorial is titled Free Speech is Not Violated At Wellesley.  The argument is that shutting down what the editors call “hate speech” is not a violation of free speech:
Many members of our community, including students, alumnae and faculty, have criticized the Wellesley community for becoming an environment where free speech is not allowed or is a violated right. Many outside sources have painted us as a bunch of hot house flowers who cannot exist in the real world. However, we fundamentally disagree with that characterization, and we disagree with the idea that free speech is infringed upon at Wellesley. Rather, our Wellesley community will not stand for hate speech, and will call it out when possible.

Countering “offensive” speech with more speech is in keeping  with the tradition of free speech. But it doesn’t end there for the Wellesley Editors, they advocate shutting down speech they deem “hate speech”:

More with videos @ Legal Insurrection

Raleigh and Atlanta will run into each other by 2060

As on every Earth Day since the first one in 1970, there will be widespread calls this weekend for the government to adopt more restrictions and regulations to reduce the harm of the American people on America’s eco-systems, wildlife and natural habitats.

But the federal government continues to undermine its half-century of environmental efforts with immigration policies that are forcing a massive expansion of the sheer number of American people — from 203 million on the first Earth Day to 325 million today.

Pew Research Center projects that the United States is on pace to add another 117 million people by 2060, and 88% of it would be the result of federal immigration policies.

A place where nobody wants to leave


I have made a discovery. There does, indeed, exist a place where nobody wants to leave. It is possible to breathe there without worrying about what you are inhaling. This place is not infested with joggers or 300-pound shoulder-strap radios, and when you’re driving along and meet another car or truck on the road, that other driver is very likely to wave at you. You, of course, wave back. This is called courtesy.

As I write this in my office, located in the “Uptown” area of a major Southern city, I am contemplating my upcoming marriage and subsequent move to the Cloud’s Creek area of Saluda County, South Carolina, an entirely rural county populated by chickens, pine trees and a rugged breed of country folk. Many of my friends consider this marriage, at age 32, a sudden and surprising move, especially when they find out that I’ll be an instant father to three children, ages 11, 7 and 5.

Marx, Orwell, And State-Cartel Socialism

Via comment by Weaver on There are common sense, fact-based ways to fix imm..."If you link the article, don't re-post it without a disclaimer that I am not in agreement with the author!" :)


When "socialist" states have to impose finance-capital extremes that even exceed the financialization of nominally capitalist economies, it gives the lie to their claims of "socialism."

OK, so our collective eyes start glazing over when we see Marx and Orwell in the subject line, but refill your beverage and stay with me on this. We're going to explore the premise that what's called "socialism"--yes, Scandinavian-style socialism and its variants--is really nothing more than finance-capital state-cartel elitism that has done a better job of co-opting its debt-serfs than its state-cartel "capitalist" cronies.

We have to start with the question "what is socialism"? The standard definition is: a political and economic theory of social organization that advocates that the means of production, distribution, and exchange should be owned or regulated by the community as a whole.

More @ Zero Hedge

107 cancer papers retracted due to peer review fraud

Via Billy

The journal Tumor Biology is retracting 107 research papers after discovering that the authors faked the peer review process. This isn’t the journal’s first rodeo. Late last year, 58 papers were retracted from seven different journals— 25 came from Tumor Biology for the same reason.

It’s possible to fake peer review because authors are often asked to suggest potential reviewers for their own papers. This is done because research subjects are often blindingly niche; a researcher working in a sub-sub-field may be more aware than the journal editor of who is best-placed to assess the work.

But some journals go further and request, or allow, authors to submit the contact details of these potential reviewers. If the editor isn’t aware of the potential for a scam, they then merrily send the requests for review out to fake e-mail addresses, often using the names of actual researchers. And at the other end of the fake e-mail address is someone who’s in on the game and happy to send in a friendly review.

More @ ARS Technica

Death toll rises to 140 after Taliban attack in Afghanistan

Via Billy

The death toll has risen to “as many as 140” Afghan soldiers in the wake of Friday’s attack on a military base by Taliban members apparently disguised in military uniforms, officials said.

One official in the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif, where the attack occurred, said Saturday at least 140 soldiers were killed and many others were wounded, Reuters reported. Other officials said the toll could even be higher.

A U.S. official in Washington on Friday had put the toll at more than 50 killed and wounded, Reuters reported.

As many as 10 Taliban fighters, dressed in Afghan army uniforms and driving military vehicles, slipped onto the base and opened fire on mostly unarmed soldiers eating a meal and leaving a mosque after Friday prayers, officials told Reuters.

More @ AJC

Volleyball Over, North Koreans Go Back to Work at Nuclear Site, Analysts Say

Via Billy

North Korea appears to have resumed work at its nuclear test site after a perplexing series of volleyball matches were held there, according to analysts who studied satellite images of the site, renewing concerns that a major weapons test could be imminent.

Many observers had feared that North Korea would test a nuclear device at the site around April 15, the birthday of Kim Il-sung, the North’s founding president and the grandfather of the current leader, Kim Jong-un. But Mr. Kim’s government celebrated the day instead with a military parade in Pyongyang, the capital, during which a fleet of missiles were rolled out, including what analysts believed were never-before-seen long-range ballistic missiles.

North Korea carried out a missile test on Sunday, but it was considered an embarrassing failure, with the projectile exploding immediately after liftoff.

Insurance carrier won't represent city in lawsuit over Lee, Jackson parks

Via Billy

City Attorney Craig Brown and his staff will have to carry the burden of defending Charlottesville in a lawsuit over its efforts to remove Confederate monuments.

The city’s insurance carrier, the Virginia Municipal League, has declined to provide coverage in the legal case that’s arisen over the Charlottesville City Council’s recent decision to move a statue of Robert E. Lee from a downtown park.

“… [T]here are no plans to hire outside counsel,” Brown said in an email Thursday.

CoA Institute Sues for Records on Potential FBI Payment to Democratic Opposition Researcher Who Compiled Infamous Trump Dossier

Via Billy

Cause of Action Institute (“CoA Institute”) has filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia seeking records relating to the relationship between the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”) and Christopher Steele, a former British spy who made headlines after he was identified as the lead author of the largely-discredited Trump dossier. 
According to a news report, Mr. Steele entered an agreement with the FBI a few weeks before the November 2016 election to investigate then-candidate Donald Trump while, at the same time, he was employed by an opposition research firm to collect information for Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. 

CoA Institute President and CEO John Vecchione: “If a former spy who was being paid to do opposition research on a U.S. presidential nominee was also on the FBI’s payroll, there are serious concerns about the agency’s independence. We need to better understand this financial relationship to ensure the FBI was not misusing taxpayer money to interfere in a presidential election on behalf of one of the candidates.”