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Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Morning News: RIP, Maya Angelou; a UCSB Memorial; and Colorado Needs Oso's Help

Posted by on Wed, May 28, 2014 at 9:28 AM

Maya Angelou reads a poem at President Clinton's inauguration in 1993.
RIP, Maya Angelou: The American poet, author, educator, activist (and actress, and Presidential Medal of Honor Freedom recipient, among countless other things) died this morning at age 86, in her home in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. There is a lot of Angelou-related stuff on the internet this morning for you to read, watch, listen to—start with her own website, and her own work, right? But here are some things: Her New York Times obituary is here, which also has a video of her Clinton inaugural poem. Dan posted a video of her reading "And Still I Rise" below. Here is a short video of Oprah Winfrey and Angelou hanging out in their PJs on Angelou's bed and talking about life. People are really enjoying her last tweet. For your eyes, a picture of the president kissing her cheek, a good-bye from Sesame Street, a picture of her hanging out with James Baldwin and a great a story about the two of them hanging out in a New York dive bar.

Hamid Karzai Signals Approval: For President Obama's new draw-down plan for US troops in Afghanistan.

"Not One More!": A moving memorial service at UC Santa Barbara yesterday turned notably pro-gun-control.

Ruling Junta in Thailand Silencing Opponents: By releasing them from custody on the condition of their silence.

Colorado Needs Help, Advice in Massive Landslide Rescue: So they've turned to the now-experts in Oso, Washington. The Colorado search for victims is currently on hold, for the safety of rescuers.

Swedish Hospital Deletes Language Protecting Gay Employees from Discrimination? So says Catholic Watch, where you can compare two versions of their nondiscrimination language. Cienna Madrid wrote a great piece about this for us last year. UPDATE: Here.

Texas Woman Says She Gave Birth Alone in Jail: She's filed a federal lawsuit claiming that she started to go into labor while in solitary confinement and that the jail denied her access to a hospital or any medical care whatsoever. Her baby died.

Amazon Whines About One-Sided News Coverage of Their War with Publisher Hachette: In related news, they keep refusing to comment whenever reporters call them for the story. Huh, wonder if those are related.

Edward Snowden Says He Was "Trained As a Spy": He's apparently really tired of being called a "low-level analyst."

Seattle Police Would Like Your Help: If you have any information about the grisly shopping cart murder.

 

Comments (25) RSS

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1
Snowden can suck it lives in a fantasy land.
Posted by Seattle14 on May 28, 2014 at 9:30 AM · Report this
2
"Not One More!": A moving memorial service at UC Santa Barbara yesterday turned notably pro-gun-control.

I think you mean anti-gun-control.
Posted by lilylie on May 28, 2014 at 9:32 AM · Report this
3
Nevermind, I should obviously have my coffee before commenting!
Posted by lilylie on May 28, 2014 at 9:33 AM · Report this
4
My body is something I use to carry around my brain.

--Dorothy Parker

Never truer, as scientists show that we are, by nature, far, far different from chimps and other primates. Specifically, we're all brain and no brawn.

Humans Evolved Weak Muscles to Feed Brain's Growth, Study Suggests

"A major difference in muscular strength between humans and nonhuman primates provide one possible explanation," suggests the new study, led by Katarzyna Bozek of Germany's Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology.

[...]

"Amazingly, untrained chimps and macaques outperformed university-level basketball players and professional mountain climbers," Roberts says. People were indeed only about half as strong as the other species.


http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/…
Posted by Supreme Ruler Of The Universe http://_ on May 28, 2014 at 9:37 AM · Report this
Theodore Gorath 5
His part ended once he gave all the documents over, and all the rest is just him playing out his international man of mystery fantasies.

But hey, there are worse lives to lead, I suppose. At least he is doing what he loves, more than most can say.

Posted by Theodore Gorath on May 28, 2014 at 9:45 AM · Report this
ferret 6
Snowden wasn't a spy. He needs to boast his own self importance, he was a contract employee while working as a maintaining a server.
Posted by ferret http://https://twitter.com/#!/okojo hide on May 28, 2014 at 9:47 AM · Report this
Pope Peabrain 7
Snowden is still an idealistic young man. I remember what that was like. Age has a way of curing that.
Posted by Pope Peabrain on May 28, 2014 at 9:49 AM · Report this
Sir Vic 8
Snowden is just one of thousands of people hired to do jobs by employers who don't know what the fuck they are doing. As long as they are shielded from prosecution for handing over state secrets to noobs & jackholes, they'll continue to pad their employment rosters and cash those government checks.
Looking at you, Booz Allen Hamilton!
Posted by Sir Vic on May 28, 2014 at 9:58 AM · Report this
guerre 9
Man a lot of Snowden hate on the old Slog machine today. Man you guys are all experts at national cyber security, I must assume with your dismissal attitude.Yup, just some slack jawed yokel who was able to get a job at several computer security jobs, access and copy the world's most secured data, communicate with journalists without tipping anyone off, and knew which country to go to for hiding from the most powerful country that this planet has ever known, which forced the landing of a sitting country's presidential plain on mere suspicion of Snowden's presents. Sounds like an idiot to me, not like those of us wasting our time on an alt weekly's comment section.
Posted by guerre on May 28, 2014 at 10:31 AM · Report this
10
Who Owns The American Intelligence Establishment ?


Quite recently, the multi-billionaire American Secretary of State, John Forbes Kerry***, feebly attempted to trivialize and publicly diminish Edward Snowden by saying he just did "computer stuff" (penetrated Swiss tax havens with the CIA, gave computer security talks and lectures with the DIA and was a technical specialist with the NSA) and that he should come back and face the American justice system.

Well, Johnny, he can't return because you revoked his passport, you effing douchetard ASSHOLE!

More importantly, what Edward Snowden's whistleblowing does is point us in the right direction: he had access to the most senstive programs within the NSA while a contractor with Booz Allen Hamilton, which is owned by the private bank, the Carlyle Group, which begs the question, what kind of access do these private banks and intel contractors have to the NSA?

Seventy percent of the NSA budget goes to private contractors now, thanks to the privatization of the American intelligence establishment, begun under Reagan, and incredibly advanced under Clinton, then furthered again under Bush #2, the first MBA president!

Before the blockbuster book by Glenn Greenwald, No Place To Hide, there was another book with the very same title by Robert O'Harrow, a WaPo reporter.

In this book O'Harrow explains (unwittingly, I suspect) the structure of the Total Information Awareness network, the brainchild of Adm. Poindexter and Dick Cheney, which was transformed from a gov't operation to strictly private contractors' project.

Many private contractors, developed and still developing various surveillance devices and software and processes, were involved in the grand structure of domestic and foreign surveillance, from monitoring hotel rooms and auto travel (from contracts with OnStar and the companies which operated the cams at the tollbooths) to the more obvious stuff we are aware of today.

Both books are well worth reading, again and again.

The Carlyle Group has a long a shady past, involved with CIA front organizations at various times, financed originally with Mellon family investment, and some highly questionable World Bank investments.

Pertaining to the World Bank: when the wife of Michael Beschloss (self-described "president scholar" or hack who has appeared on PBS News Hour, another hack show) was with the World Bank she directed funds to a private bank, strangely enough, which was the Carlyle Group, which she would later join to manage said funds, then leaving to start her own hedge fund (again, perhaps, with the very same funds????)!

Reading Greenwald's No Place To Hide (really an incredible book, a must-read) along with O'Harrow's No Place To Hide, explaining the privatization of the intel establishment, and what those private contractors are up to, is a most enlightening and eye-opening experience.

The groundwork for a privatized Total Information Awareness network began with the SAIC, which ostensibly flubbed a contract with the FBI, which allowed them to copy the FBI's most sensitive files.

Next, the SAIC ostensibly flubbed the Trailblazer contract at the NSA (this is the one which whistleblower, Thomas Drake, attempted to go through normal channels, was rebuffed, then sought out his congressman, and later would have his career and life destroyed in the federal courts by the US government), where again SAIC had access to highly sensitive files [great way to move the files in plain sight].

Booz Allen Hamilton (Carlyle Group), SAIC, etc., etc., etc., the list of private intel contractors is horrendously long and growing. . .

***Interesting item regarding the son of Vice President Biden (Hunter Biden) and stepson of John Kerry (Chris Heinz) and their connections to Burisma Holdings, the number one gas and oil producer in the Ukraine. Curiouser and curiouser. . . .

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2014/05/r…

More...
Posted by sgt_doom on May 28, 2014 at 10:46 AM · Report this
Sir Vic 11
@9 Those jobs are a lot easier to get when you lie on your resume and the people tasked with doing the background check don't even bother to verify any of the info. When you get behind the curtain, you find that these people really don't know much about physical security or intelligence, so outwitting them doesn't require much skill. You could even be on a plane and no one would be able to detect your presence, because there are a lot of idiots out there.
Posted by Sir Vic on May 28, 2014 at 10:53 AM · Report this
12
Political cartoon of the day:

http://andrewgavinmarshall.files.wordpre…
Posted by sgt_doom on May 28, 2014 at 10:59 AM · Report this
13
And remember, there are no conspiracies, the superrich do not get together to plan stuff, but just in case you did not receive the latest invite to the international finance and bankers forum, here is the guest list:

http://www.bilderbergmeetings.org/partic…

Posted by sgt_doom on May 28, 2014 at 11:19 AM · Report this
venomlash 14
@12: I don't get it.
Posted by venomlash on May 28, 2014 at 11:19 AM · Report this
15
#9: Well, pathological liars that change hats whenever it suits them are kind of unlikable.
Posted by Jizzlobber on May 28, 2014 at 11:37 AM · Report this
TCLballardwallymont 16
A Texas woman gave birth in a solitary confinement cell, her baby died. Maya Angelou died. US troops are leaving Afghanistan.

... and every comment is about Ed Snowden. There's some fucked up priorities in here people.
Posted by TCLballardwallymont on May 28, 2014 at 11:37 AM · Report this
Pope Peabrain 17
@14 The guy who puts an end to Republican's ill advised military adventures is a militarist. It's right wing circle logic.
Posted by Pope Peabrain on May 28, 2014 at 11:38 AM · Report this
raindrop 18
@17: No, the cartoon is simply the HOPE that Afghanistan turns out all right after 2016 when most of the US forces are gone.

I'm always amazed at your contortions.
Posted by raindrop on May 28, 2014 at 12:12 PM · Report this
guerre 19
@15 do you have any evidence to suggest that Snowden is a pathological liar, besides your now suspicious assertion?
Posted by guerre on May 28, 2014 at 12:16 PM · Report this
20
@19, well, there's the lying about being a trained spy. There's the whole lying to his employers thing where he betrayed them and the country. And he apparently conned his buddy and coworker from some computer privileges. Of course complaining about the NSA and fleeing to Putin's Russia takes a breathtaking amount of doublethink.

I don't think he's literally a pathological liar though. Just a fucked up twerp with delusions of grandeur.

Posted by GermanSausage on May 28, 2014 at 12:33 PM · Report this
21
@20, yes, he "betrayed" his employers! He "betrayed" his country! You sound like a cartoon villain going on about the hero of the story. He told the world the U.S. was spying on them in unprecedented ways. And you think he's the problem.

"Betraying" one's country is the right thing to do when your country is doing the wrong thing. Anything else is boot licking.

But I guess some people will always value loyalty over truth and justice. Mobsters and police unions come to mind.
Posted by LJM on May 28, 2014 at 12:45 PM · Report this
venomlash 22
@21: There are official channels for whistleblowers to go through, even when classified information is involved. Is there some reason why Mr. Snowden didn't attempt to use them? It's a little like glorifying a guy for calling in a bomb threat to force a building to evacuate, when all he had to do was pull the fire alarm.
Posted by venomlash on May 28, 2014 at 1:42 PM · Report this
23
@22 Have you heard of William Binney? If you say "No" or have to google it, then you have your answer for why Snowden didn't use the official channels.

@16 Agreed. The baby died, which is bad enough, and the woman suffered "severe and likely permanent, physical and psychological injuries". Treatment of prisoners in this country is a fucking disgrace.
Posted by wxPDX on May 28, 2014 at 2:22 PM · Report this
ferret 24
@16 We can talk about your favourite topics, guns, and how us mean people want to take them away from you...

RIP Maya Angelou, and The Afghanistan Imbroglio will still continue, US and NATO troops out of the country or not...
Posted by ferret http://https://twitter.com/#!/okojo hide on May 28, 2014 at 3:03 PM · Report this
Pope Peabrain 25
@18 Oh, I see, he's not militant enough. The longest war in our history should continue half way around the world so you feel safe. Why don't you volunteer to go and sit in some filth hole for America?
Posted by Pope Peabrain on May 28, 2014 at 3:50 PM · Report this

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