"When it comes to climate science, two of the three Democratic presidential candidates are 'A' students, while most of the Republican contenders are flunking, according to a panel of scientists who reviewed candidates' comments."
..."In point of fact anyone that scored less than a "C" (i.e. below 70) exhibited "ignorance would be dangerous in a doorman, let alone a president.""
Some'd think, wohow! Bring it on! The mafia helped us during WW2 in Sicily, so why not now in NYC and perhaps other large cities such as Boston, Seattle and Los Angeles? They have an underground "social network" that's far superior to any local law enforcement agency. They can monitor Muslim extremist groups and individuals that may be plotting violent acts against American citizens. And then the mafia can feed this info to law enforcement agencies to arrest these perpetrators.
Who doesn't know Neil deGrasse Tyson! The funniest, most fascinating interlocutor in modern science. The perfect successor of the great Carl Sagan. I've watched dozens of videos with him, interviews, documentaries, the new revamped version of the Cosmos series of course, even 2-hour long lectures and even longer debates. I just can't have enough of him. It's not that he's an exceptional genius, or that he's made any ground-breaking scientific discovery or anything of the sort. That's not his function. He's a promoter and communicator of science, and he's arguably the best at this job (along with Bill Nye, I guess).
Going through this list of NdGT quotations was fun. The attitude to knowledge, curiosity and critical thinking that radiates from them, plus his laid-back and open approach to discussing issues from science and technology, to religion, to social and political issues, is one of those things that tend to enthrall kids (including mine), and win their hearts for the world of science - and that's precious, and very crucial for the future. (so here's the list)
Hey, ma'fellow procrastinators concerned citizens! Don't know about'cha, but we here at the south-eastern tip of these God-forgotten backward Balkans have been noticing something lately. The whole world is burning: terriztz are killing folks like sheep at will, the Euros are countering them with kitten macros on Facebook, planes are dropping down like apples... And here? Not a single fuck has been given.
See, all our neighbors are staggering under the pressure: refugees flocking in, fences being raised, barbed wire everywhere, with electricity, dogs and sentries 24/7; sad-looking refugees hugging babies are being tripped over, turbans and beards flying in the air. And here? Total silence. Not a single leaf is being moved.
Terr.... er, I mean, refugees are scrambling to reach the promised land of Germany, Holland and Sweden (well, turns out Sweden is a bit too cold to their taste anyway)... And what about our land? They don't want to hear about it!
Did anyone hear of the latest ISIS terror attack in Tunisia? You know, the one in Tunis. Let me fill you in. A bus attack stroke the presidential guard. In the heart of the capital. 12 people are dead. A state of emergency has been declared throughout Tunisia. What... you haven't heard? Doesn't ring a bell at all?
I'm not seeing much outrage. Really, where's the outrage? Where are the spontaneous outbursts of solidarity? The street rallies in the thousands, the prominent politicians and diplomats vowing to punish the perpetrators? The horrific pictures with a dramatic music background on the TV? The live 24/7 worldwide broadcast of the aftermath of the event and the constant news feed on the subsequent investigation?
I'm not seeing any Tunisian flags around the social networks. I wonder why is that?...
Are you not Tunisia? Are you not Lebanon at least? Come on, who's with me? Wait... where are you going!?
First, there was that "clock kid" who's suing his school for $15m after being detained for bringing a homemade clock to class that was mistaken for a bomb. And now there's the expected backlash. Predictable like the tides, Mr O'Reilly...
It's hard to look at this group of protesters and their supporters and see anything redeeming about them. If some armed group was protesting outside a church during services, these guys would be furious.
Not entirely sure how people praying inside of a private building that they own is them "shoving their beliefs down our throats", but it I guess it wouldn't be a redneck party without at least a few idiots spewing meaningless platitudes.
Like seriously, I'm so sick of Indian food being shoved down my throat. I don't actually ever eat it, and no one's ever forced me to eat it, but there's like two or three Indian restaurants in my town now. I'm sick and tired of the Indianization of my country's dining options. WHY CAN'T THERE ONLY BE THINGS THAT ARE FAMILIAR TO ME IN MY TOWN?! I ONLY LIKE THINGS THAT I LIKE AND FEEL COMFORTABLE WITH!
Seriously. Stunts like this are the reason that everyone who doesn't firmly buy into the far-right mentality already, simply writes off everyone who does. The claim that they aren't bigots, then do shit like this - this smacks of blatant hypocrisy. How are these people any different from the ones who attacked Chinese immigrants in the late 19th century, or the Protestants that marginalized and ridiculed the Catholic Irish immigrants before that?
Cue the "freedom of expression" whiteknights now. I'm sure they'll find half a dozen ways to bullshit the hell out of this.
So, Turkey, a NATO member, downs a Russian plane that strayed into its territory on a mission to bomb Syrian rebels.
Putin is "mad as hell". How is this one going to turn out?
My own take is that Russia and Turkey are going to have to find a way through this without involving the rest of NATO. But given the nature of the treaty, is that actually possible? How is France's relationship with Turkey going to change, given its recent accord with Russia? (Not that France and Turkey have been traditional allies, of course.)
Will this mean that France continues in its veto against Turkey joining the European Union?
Oh well...more deaths to follow, no doubt. Some will be blue on blue, others blue on red, yet others blue on yellow. Such is violent endeavour.
Edit. I would delete this after seeing dreamville_bg's earlier post. But only if I get mod approval.
While fences, walls and barbed wire are being raised all across Europe in response to the refugee crisis, the US is also undergoing an internal division of their own on the issue.
First, president Obama announced that the US would provide asylum for 10 thousand Syrian refugees. But then the House voted on a bill that is meant to tighten the measures for accepting refugees even beyond their current ridiculous level. The law will now require of the FBI chief, the chiefs of national security and secretary of domestic intelligence to approve every single Syrian refugee before they've come anywhere near a US-bound plane. In result, this would immensely complicate and prolong their entry process into the US, possibly beyond 2 or 3 years.
(Video of the downed Russian jet is included in the 2nd link).
Given the fact that the airspace over Syria has become rather crowded lately, this was bound to happen. There are accusations from both sides, Russia asking some questions about what was the need for all this, why Turkey called NATO after the incident instead of trying to contact Russia (as if Russia had hit a Turkish plane and not viceversa), and accusing Turkey of benefiting financially from smuggler trade with the Islamic State, and trying to break up the anti-ISIS coalition.
In turn, Turkey has accused Russia of repeatedly violating their airspace, and has even warned them on more than one occasion that they'd start shooting planes down. Russia claims the jet was downed well within Syrian territory, it hadn't violated Turkish airspace, and was no threat to Turkey. In turn, Turkey claims they had warned the jet pilot several times to leave their airspace immediately.
After watching this movie produced by BBC and Shaista Aziz "A nation divided? A Charlie Hebdo aftermath", the first thing that came into my mind, was that France is not what you know from the social media and movies. Unfortunately not. France is a country strongly divided into one biggest french speaking, born in France and looking french group and another french speaking, born in France and looking completely different from what society must know. Here I would like to clarify something that one of the main problem to me is the understanding of the words "strong nationalism and chauvinism" while you have EU and globalization. It is like living in 18st centuries. As you can see on the movie, the problem with the nation is rooted back in the beginning of 20st century, when France was colonizer or even further more when France was colonial empire. As we know from the history Senegal, Morocco, Madagascar, Mauritius, Réunion and the Seychelles ( probably this is one of your dream place to go), Egypt, French Tunisia, Ivory Coast, French Sudan and many, many others countries. Do you know that the official secondary language in those countries is french? Who made this language official? Everyone knows why we need colonies, so I think it is useless to explain in my article.
Hey, ma'fellow credulous fanfolk critically-thinking peeps! I saw this in a recent post in a local BG forum around here (rough translation): "Every Slav should see Moscow once in their lifetime, and feel proud and awed with the Slavic spirit of greatness that has endured through the centuries around the Russian places, and continues to flourish to this day. At the heart of the Russian capital, the grandeur of the Russian nation and the power of the Slavic spirit can be felt everywhere".
Well, tell you what. I've been in Moscow about a dozen times already, and I can assure you that at the heart of the Russian capital, the spirit of commercialism and wild-wild-West style capitalism in its most grotesque form can be felt at every corner. If you happen to step away from the center, say, by 2-3 metro stops from the Red Square, you'd see all sorts of misery and poverty, and beggars, drunkards, drug dealers, and ragged babushki, and shady types from "the Republics".
Patience has its limits. Take it too far, and it's cowardice. - George Jackson
Paris has once again been attacked in a senseless and unwarranted terrorist attack, apparently in the same ideological vein as the Charlie Hebdo incident. France has once again proven to be a fertile and easy target to attack with no apparent consequences by terrorist criminals and will continue to do so as long as these extremist actions are tolerated.
I had proposed a plan to fight this growing menace. Although rejected out of hand with much hand wringing and apprehension, it is an alternative to the usual lather, rinse, repeat that has been going on with responses to terrorist assaults. If you are going to comment on this post, please do so with solutions, not timid head-in-the-sand kumbaya style opposition. Yes, the plan is butt ugly but so is the situation. I don't see some daintiness squad as a viable option.
Another day another Western terrorism target drawn into their jihad. The recruitment tools and sympathy continues. ISIL remains faceless while all of industrialized Europe stands to be counted as oppressive producers of ISIL's self-perceived victimology. Now the enlightened world is calling once again to invest blood and treasure in a futile effort to eradicate this spreading infection.
Hi again, you benevolent dictators of this fictional utopian society of yours that you've probably already shaped beyond repair by taking a series of decisions in a number of ridiculously dichotomous situations, previously presented by Yours-truly. The following situation has been inspired by the NationStates game, where you're the guy one calling the shots (admit it, who wouldn't want that?) The last time the debate was about affirmative action in school, and a slight majority of you chose to favor the argument of Mr Zeke Utopia, conservative speaker who argued that the current education system is working perfectly well and doesn't need changing. But now the situation is quite different. So here goes...
All of Insert Country Name has been in an uproar since yesterday when a car exploded in the middle of Insert City Name, killing dozens and injuring hundreds. This terrorist act was traced back to a violent minority group known as the Lilliputian Freedom Fighters, a group allegedly supported by an unfriendly regime, despising Insert Country Name for its heathenish ways and political bent, but more particularly for supporting the recent occupation of their homeland by an ally.
There are several disparate responses to this that I've seen across the webs. Some stick out as relatively reasonable, while others are batshit insane. It's up to you towards which you'd tend to gravitate. So please share your impressions on the matter.
Love the stupid short anecdotes. Anything that makes you smirk with its dumbness, really. So, do share if you have any!
Two crocs were flying from flower to flower. One was green, and the other was from Africa too. One asked,
"How much does a kilo of roasted nails cost, m'dear?"
The other retorted,
"What kinda fridges are you talking about? You do know I don't smoke, right?"
So...the Donald doesn't object to a database to assist monitoring Muslims. Is there a constitutional amendment that deals with this? Is it possible to be on other lists too? Could, for example, one be on the Muslim database, and the gun-owner's database, or are they mutually exclusive? Or is it unconstitutional to have a gun-owner's database? Or, given the separation of state and religion, and the constitutional safeguards for religious freedom, are other religions required to enrol their members on other databases?
The Donald brings such a refreshing set of ideas to the US presidential election. Between his wonderful ideas and Doctor Carson's perspicacity and deep thinking, the possibility of Hillary becoming the next POTUS is diminishing rapidly: almost to the point of becoming a sure-fire certainty. (If you will excuse the contradictory and pleonastic subordinate clause used for emphasis.)
Oh America: you make the rest of us so confused. Given the amateur constitutional lawyers we hear from on here from time to time, can this be constitutional when gun control isn't? And if so, how? And if not, why aren't these same amateur constitutional lawyers up in arms about the Donald's idea?
Indeed, there are already millions of climate change and environmental refugees: both internally in a lot of countries like India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nigeria, and across borders. Plus the conflicts that all this brings. We all know that the Syrian mess was partly triggered by an exceptional 5 year drought; that the Arab Spring was additionally flamed by soaring food prices due to the droughts; we know that hundreds of thousands left New Orleans after Katrina, and a lot of them never came back.
We know that the migration to the US borders from the south partly has to do with gripping droughts in Central America. We know that a lot of refugees trying to reach Europe are from areas where life has become too unbearable because of water depletion, deforestation, overpopulation etc.
Let's face it. The process has already started. And the flood of people wanting to escape their misery will be only increasing ever more rapidly. And here's the bad news. Ultimately, they will be facing increasing problems with getting allowed into Europe, the US and other places around the world. And the great dehumanization, and more excuses and pretexts for the destruction of human rights and ending people's dignity will be triggered by all that.
Whoever thought these things are none of their concern because they were happening thousands of miles away, obviously hadn't thought this through. And we've all had it coming.
The Finnish parliament is currently discussing if the country should quit the euro. This should probably happen some time at the beginning of next year. While a decision for leaving the Eurozone is unlikely, the debate on the issue itself shows that Finland does have a problem with the European currency.
The question will be discussed after a civic petition managed to collect 50 thousand signatures from citizens - probably the first such case in the history of the currency union. The petition insists on a referendum for leaving the Eurozone, but in order to have such a referendum, first the Finnish parliament will have to give its approval.
Despite the financial problems with the Euro, a recent Eurobarometer research shows that 64% of the Finns still support their membership in the currency union. But last year they were 69%, which means support is dwindling.
Finland was affected by a three-year recession, and is currently the worst-performing country within the Eurozone. Even Greece is doing better. A number of economists believe the euro has been a major factor for the deterioration of the Finnish economy. By reverting to its national currency, Finland could have a chance to tinker with its interest rates on its own and devalue the Finnish markka, the proponents of this measure are arguing. This could make the Finnish exports much cheaper and thus, more competitive. The expenses for conducting such a move are estimated at 20 billion euro, but in the long term it could have a positive effect on the Finnish economy.
Right now, the value of labour in the country is the highest in the Eurozone. The economists are giving Sweden as an example for comparison, a country that is a EU member but not an Eurozone member. The Swedish economy has grown by 8% since 2008, while the Finnish one has shrunken by 6%. Granted, it wouldn't be very fair to try to compare the Finnish economy to the Swedish one, but the issue remains that the euro is now being increasingly perceived as a liability rather than an asset to Finland.
I may have missed prior posts that brought it up but it's a discussion worth repeating now that France is back and actively involved in a war once the Syrians attacked a 'real' state worth retaliating for, as opposed to Turkey where Assad shelling villages wasn't a sufficient cause for a war or intervention. /snerk
^That Russian policy to detonate as many hospitals as their planes can reach, combined with the atrocities of Assad and Daesh is only going to have one result: not to shrink a refugee crisis but to boost it. The Russians, in other words, are literally working to the same end as both of the major players in the civil war. They do not have the least bit of concern about the humanitarian catastrophe for the refugees, they have neither tears nor whining about expanding the chaos and the danger facing civilians in any sense whatsoever.
So long as the West, and NATO, persists in ignoring that Russia has its own goals, and they're completely unrelated to solving the refugee crisis or even really defeating Daesh until Assad is firmly consolidated in power with only Daesh left, there will be severe problems for planning a balanced strategy. It's bad enough to move airplanes existing purely to target the Russian Air Force and that France is now pursuing its own campaign in the midst of a Bonapartist emergency state plus likely to be not half as democratic as what exists now probable constitutional changes (which this being France will also conveniently not lead to any trouble with Paris and Brussels as human rights go).
A war cannot be won when one side wants to go right and the other side is going counterclockwise in reverse and the other side things counterclockwise in reverse is going in the same direction they're going, or alternately persisting in ignoring a pattern of danger that's as real as the USA's own idiotic attempts to push red lines now, against Russia, that were not enforced when they might have had an impact on a weaker opponent earlier.