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Topics - meepmeep


One member of European security watchdog OSCE's monitoring mission in eastern Ukraine was killed and two others were injured after their vehicle drove over a mine near Luhansk.

An American man was killed and a German woman was injured on Sunday morning, a spokesman for Austria's foreign ministry said. Austria holds the rotating presidency of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).

It's pretty crazy to me that there's been a low level war simmering in eastern Ukraine for a long time now with shooting, shelling, and casualties, but nobody ever seems to really talk about it. It's a good thing the State Dept. is currently fully staffed by competent people without questionable agendas! :meeps:
It's women's fault:



The best thing about this piece of trying hard to be funny garbage is that marriage is just a code word for sex, but that word is bad because he is a Lutheran pastor. Because we all know young 20 something dudes who love video games and farts (LOL TACO BELL FARTS) and football are just dying ( :stareicide: ) to get married and have lots and lots of babies in order to secure the future of Social Security and Medicare.

This is why you never see young men on the internet complain about divorce laws or the evil indignities of being forced to pay child support after some bitch fucking tricked them for the welfare checks and WIC. They've just been dreaming of marriage and babies all their lives, and it's such a bitter disappointment to find out all these dumb broads don't want anything to do with that. God, why are women so commitment phobic and so negative about marriage and babies?  ::)

Conversely, if you find your guy friend attractive, and if you see him as a man of character and heart, then call him right now and tell him that he was placed in the Friend Zone due to a clerical error. Say to him, "You make me laugh and would be a great husband and father. Clearly, you need to be on the express track to the Marriage Zone."


I highly recommend every woman call up a guy she casually knows to tell him that he would be a great husband and father. TRUST ME THIS CANNOT POSSIBLY GO WRONG.
Hundreds arrested in Belarus after "unauthorized" protest:

The people were protesting the "social parasite" tax, which sounds like Paul Ryan's wet dream. People who are unemployed for 6 months are required to pay the tax. It's meant to encourage "discipline" and prevent "social dependency."

Anti-corruption protests happening all over Russia now:

There's been zero mention of it on state TV, of course, and at least one reporter has been arrested for "participating in an unauthorized demonstration" in Moscow even though they had press credentials.

They're even arresting teenagers:

His horribly offensive anti-Russia evil sign says "sell the dachas / build roads."

What's most striking about this is that it doesn't look too different from some of the shit we've seen over here.

Canada, where samesex marriage was long ago legalized and there is a serious 'obsession' with gender equality,  isn't the best place for retelling 'obscene male' anecdotes and jokes about 'the non-traditionals.' In addition to public censure, in major metropolitan areas with compact 'queer' neighborhoods (in particular, Vancouver, Toronto, and Montreal), you risk penalties in the form of a fine or even felony charges for 'hate crimes.'

"It's better to refrain from demonstrating emotions when dealing with members of the opposite sex, in order to avoid allegations of attempted sexual harassment (on university campuses, the institution of the 'public moral police' is widespread).

Though foreigners sometimes find it difficult to distinguish one from the other, Canadian citizens can become very offended, if you compare their country to the United States.


It's inadmissible to use the word 'zhid' [kike] when addressing any Jew, even if he doesn't understand Russian.

"Visitors to this country should bear in mind Israelites' extreme sensitivity to virtually any criticism of the state of Israel itself, as well as criticism of any aspects of life in Israel."

Comparing a Kenyan to a monkey can cause the very strongest reaction, as can rudely questioning a Kenyan's mental abilities (knocking yourself on the head, as a gesture during conversation, is considered an insult). If you poke a Kenyan with your finger during conversation, it can also instigate aggression from him.
So I saw a new piece of Corey Stewart today, and it made me remember to order my absentee ballot for the primary.

Tell me, TR, who should I vote for? Ralph Northam, the current Lt. Gov., or Tom Perriello?

Not going to lie, Perriello has the advantage here because his dog Jack is listed on his page as the campaign hound:

Anyway, as for Stewart...

If you haven't heard of Stewart, well, he is pretty much pretending to be Trump and is basically a big old piece of shit, but he may not end up getting the Republican nomination:

At a public celebration last summer, Corey Stewart, Prince William County's top Republican, praised his county's diversity and welcomed the renaming of a middle school once christened for a prominent segregationist.

Five months later, in the throes of his campaign for the Republican nomination for governor of Virginia, Stewart joined a group railing against the planned removal of a statue of Gen. Robert E. Lee from a park in downtown Charlottesville.

"We've got to defend our culture, we've got to defend our heritage," Stewart barked before supporters that included men holding Confederate flags, according to a video on his Twitter page.

With a ravenous appetite for rhetorical bombast, Stewart is campaigning as an unapologetic disciple of President Trump, echoing the president's populist diatribes against the Republican establishment, undocumented immigrants, political correctness and the media.

Yet in purple Virginia, the only Southern state that Trump lost to Democrat Hillary Clinton, Stewart is struggling to captivate voters. Three months before the June 13 primary, polls show him in single digits, far behind front-runner Ed Gillespie, a former lobbyist and adviser to President George W. Bush, in a field that also includes state Sen. Frank W. Wagner (R-Virginia Beach).

Stewart, in a telephone interview, expressed no concern about disagreements with allies, saying they are a routine fact of his combative political life. He offered a broad rebuke of those who criticized him at the supervisors' meeting as "the same old liberal whack jobs who have been protesting me for 10 years."

Stewart's credentials as a self-styled voice of Trumpism may seem dubious, since the president's own campaign dismissed him as its Virginia co-chairman in October. Stewart had ignored the campaign's order to refrain from protesting the national Republican Party's treatment of Trump.

"He got fired for not following directions," said John Fredericks, Trump's Virginia co-chairman. "He may own the Trump style but he doesn't own the Trump brand. The Trump people don't like him."

Told about Fredericks's remarks, Stewart said, "I hate that guy," and contended that he was fired "because I was too loyal." He remains devoted to Trump, he said, and is confident that he can ride the anti-establishment spirit the president unleashed to the governor's mansion.

"In-your-face conservatism," Stewart said, describing Trumpian politics. "I'm the anti-establishment candidate who's going to burn the s---house down."

This is the best part!
During a rally for the statue in mid-February, counter demonstrators shouted Stewart down. He cited the altercation with what he described as "radical left-wing agitators" in subsequent fundraising pleas.

While he was at the rally, Stewart met the leaders of a fledgling right-wing group known as Unity and Security for America, who asked him to return the following week for a news conference. He accepted the invitation.

The group, which has fewer than a dozen members, supports immigration laws "that require that most immigrants come from Western countries," according to its website. Jason Kessler, the leader of the group, tweeted in November that Trump is "the savior of Western Civilization" and that "his acts of bravery have inspired a movement that will outlive us all."

"Corey Stewart showed up when we needed him," said Isaac Smith, a spokesman for the group. "He stood by us."

Last August, Stewart spoke at the renaming ceremony for the Mills E. Godwin Middle School, a Woodbridge building originally named in honor of a former governor who, as a state lawmaker in the 1950s, led the "massive resistance" movement against school integration. The county's board of education renamed Godwin for an African American philanthropist, George Hampton.

"It's been a long, long, long time in coming, that's for sure," Stewart told the audience at the ceremony. "A lot of things have changed in Prince William County since 1970, and let me tell you something. Those changes have been good."

He described Prince William as "the most progressive, futurist county in the United States."

Recalling the moment, Willie Deutsch, a conservative school board member, said it suggested that Stewart "is more focused on winning over audiences he is speaking to than sticking with a core set of principles."

"At times he may be hard right, at other times he may be more of a pragmatic conservative," Deutsch said. "He reinvents himself to create the version of himself he thinks he needs to be to move to the next level."

Stewart waved off that depiction, saying that his views on immigration and diversity have remained consistent. He said he had opposed removing Godwin's name from the school despite his remarks at the ceremony.

"I wasn't going to rain on the parade," he said.

So yeeeeah. I live in PWC. I don't know if this fucker will show up on my ballot when he's up for re-election for his county seat in 2019 because I don't know if the at-large members are elected by the whole county or by their specific district. He's not in my specific district. But if I see his name anywhere, idgaf who the other person is, I'm voting for them.
Politics and Current Events / The Budget Apocalypse

This is fucking evil.

Press conference garbage:


The real problem with America is that we feed seniors who need food and companionship by STEALING MONEY from single mom of 2 in Detroit but also we're going to get rid of Head Start and free breakfast in schools and after school programs that feed those same kids of single mom of 2 in Detroit.

I feel legit sick to my stomach listening to these people.

The signing of Bruno comes amid growing concern about femicide and rape in Brazil. To mark International Women's Day last week, the Cruzeiro football team - which is famed for being socially progressive - wore shirts that highlighted the problems with relevant data for each number, for example: "A rape every 11 minutes".

In its latest country report, Amnesty International noted that lethal violence against women had increased by 24% over the previous decade and confirmed that Brazil was one of the worst Latin American countries in which to be a girl or woman. One in three women had suffered physical, verbal or psychological violence over the past year, according to a survey released last week by Datafolha.

Bruno - as he is best known in Brazil - has served less than a third of the 22-year sentence handed down by a lower court for ordering the 2010 killing of his former partner and the mother of his child.

Samudio went missing after she sued the footballer for child support in a high-profile case that threatened a mooted big-money move to Milan.

Bruno confessed to his involvement in the crime. The court heard how he conspired with friends who tortured and strangled the model, then disposed of the body by feeding it to the footballer's rottweilers.


But some of the paper's most striking results don't have to do with specific treatments. Instead, they have to do with health insurance.

When researchers took the 32,699 American patients who visited American cystic fibrosis centers between 2009 and 2013, and broke them down according to their insurance coverage, the comparison with their 4,662 Canadian counterparts was telling.

The Canadians, all of whom get government-provided health coverage, had the same risk of dying as those Americans who had private insurance. When compared with Americans on continuous Medicare and Medicaid, though, Canadians' risk of death was 44 percent lower. And the disparity was even greater when it came to Americans with no insurance at all.

Medicaid coverage is very different from one state to the next, but those in the cystic fibrosis community were not completely surprised that patients who qualify for the government insurance might not have the best outcomes overall.

The biggest challenges, he said, are access to medications, given that cystic fibrosis patients often have to take some 10 to 15 drugs every day, some of which may not be covered under Medicaid.

There is, however, a confounding factor: "It's difficult to separate the access to care and your socioeconomic status," said Stephenson.

Yet Gorey's studies have found that even among cancer patients who have similarly low incomes in each country, "Canadians are much more likely to get the indicated surgery, much more likely to get chemotherapy, radiation therapy, much more likely to live longer," he said.

Yes, but, did they consider how many more iPhones Americans are buying? :hmm:
Politics and Current Events / Free speech on campus
 :stopper:  :stopper:  :stopper:  :stopper:  :stopper:  :stopper:

Consider a dual appearance of former Vice President Joe Biden and former House Speaker John Boehner at Notre Dame's commencement last year. FIRE lists these as the target of disinvitations, but its only evidence is a letter from 89 students saying they were "disappointed and discouraged" by the invitations chiefly because of Biden's tolerance for abortion. But the students didn't call for the invitations to be rescinded or for Biden and Boehner to be prevented from speaking. When commencement arrived, they spoke, peaceably.

Moreover, not every protest results in a speaker's invitation being withdrawn. Only 24 "disinvitations" in 2016 resulted in a true withdrawn invitation; in FIRE's full database of 331 incidents going back to 2000, only 145 were true disinvitations. Is a protest that fails to result in a withdrawn invitation a blow against free speech? Hardly. In many if not most cases, it's an expression of free speech. Or is an invitation to give a talk on campus supposed to be immune from comment once it's tendered?

The biggest flaw of the FIRE database is its conflation of commencements with campus talks and debates. As anyone knows who has spent even a semester on campus, one of these things is not like the others. Commencements account for about 40% of the incidents in FIRE's database of 331 "disinvitations" dating back to 2000, and seven of the 43 cases last year.

The right is still intent on undercutting what they see as the liberal political power of the university. But they're taking a different tack, pursuing their goals in more structural ways: weakening tenure, slashing budgets, upping teaching loads. It would be easy to dismiss this as simply a result of austerity programs, which have cut public services to the bone in states across America. But in states like Wisconsin and North Carolina, however, the cuts have been accompanied by rhetoric that makes the true goal clear: attacking curriculums and professors who seem too liberal, and weakening the overall power of the university.

Take North Carolina. Since Republicans took over the state government in the Tea Party wave of 2010, the state's universities have been under constant attack. Centers on the environment, voter engagement, and poverty studies have all been shuttered by the Board of Governors, which is appointed by the state legislature.

No sooner had Pat McCrory come into the governor's office in 2013 than he began making broadsides against the university, using stark economic measures to target liberal arts programs, like gender studies, with which he disagreed. His stated view was that university programs should be funded based on how many of their graduates get jobs.

Notably, the McCrory campaign was bankrolled by Art Pope, founder of the Pope Center for Higher Education (now the Martin Center), an organization dedicated to increasing the "diversity of ideas" taught on campus. As its policy director, Jay Schalin, explained in 2015, the crisis at the university stems from "the ideas that are being discussed and promoted": "multiculturalism, collectivism, left-wing post-modernism." He wants less Michel Foucault on campus, more Ayn Rand.

As two conservative professors, we agree that right-wing faculty members and ideas are not always treated fairly on college campuses. But we also know that right-wing hand-wringing about higher education is overblown. After interviewing 153 conservative professors in the social sciences and humanities, we believe that conservatives survive and even thrive in one of America's most progressive professions.

Science / Pain control and the opiate epidemic
A different take, one that often gets totally ignored:

Many of our colleagues in addiction medicine tell us they are alarmed by the widespread mistreatment of pain patients. We receive anecdotes every week from physicians and pharmacists, most of them expert in addictions, describing pain patients who have involuntarily lost access to their pain medications and as a result have been reduced from working to bedridden adults, or who have become suicidal.

This loss of access occurs several ways. A pharmacy benefit program may refuse to cover the prescription because it has already enacted the changes that CMS is proposing to make mandatory. A physician may feel threatened by employers or regulators, and believes his or her professional survival depends on reducing opioid doses -- involuntarily and without the patient's consent -- to thresholds that the CDC itself described as voluntary and not mandatory. Or state regulators have imposed such burdensome requirements that no physician in a given region can sustain prescriptions for their patients. Such patients are then "orphaned," compelled to seek treatment from other physicians across the country.

Given the expertise in addiction among these physicians, it should be particularly worrisome that they believe the present pill-control campaign has gone too far. And yet, the ethics are clear: It should never be acceptable for us to countenance the death of one patient in the avowed service of protecting others, even more so when the projected benefit is unproven.

A hearing in El Paso County in Texas went from ordinary to "unprecedented" last week when half a dozen Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents showed up at a courthouse where an undocumented woman was seeking a protective order against the boyfriend she accused of abusing her.

The woman, a citizen of Mexico who was living in El Paso had been driven to the courthouse by a victim's advocate from the Center Against Sexual and Family Violence, a shelter for victims of domestic abuse where she had been living.

She left under arrest.

"This is really unprecedented," El Paso County Attorney Jo Anne Bernal told The Washington Post.

It was the first time in her 23 years at the courthouse, Bernal said, that she can remember ICE agents making their presence known during a protective order hearing. The agents had come to stake out the woman, identified by her initials I.E.G., because, Bernal speculates, they likely received a tip from the only other person who knew the time and place of the hearing -- the woman's alleged abuser.

Already the policies have led to the deportation of an undocumented mother from Arizona who, rather than dodge her check-in with immigration officials, dutifully went and was detained. In Seattle, a 23-year-old man who had been living legally in the United States under the Obama administration's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program was arrested and detained last week by ICE officials who claimed he was a gang member, something his lawyers deny.

And in Denver, an undocumented mother of four who had been living in the United States for 20 years sought refuge in the basement of a church this week rather than check in with authorities, for fear she too would be deported.

In El Paso, Bernal said her office, which prosecutes criminal cases and represents alleged victims of domestic violence, like I.E.G., has felt the weight of this policy shift in recent weeks. Call volume has increased from concerned El Paso residents, she said, who have reported checkpoints in certain parts of town and the appearance of ICE agents at routine traffic stops.

The lesson to be learned is don't trust the authorities. Great!
Politics and Current Events / SCOTUS Nominee
On tonight's episode...

Will it be ?


Will it be ?

Tune in to find out!

(No, really, they made identical Twitter pages for both of them. They're making both of them travel to DC so one of them can go home without having been nominated.)

USA! USA! USA! :cheer:
Politics and Current Events / Trouble in the Balkans
Mostly comprehensive explanation here:

More about the attempted coup in Montenegro by Russian-backed Serbs:

More on the Serbia/Kosovo train debacle:

This "invade to protect our ethnic minorities" plan is just a carbon copy of Russia's policy in Ukraine and the Caucasus.
Politics and Current Events / Comic relief thread
Because we all need a break from staring at the magnificent hellscape.

The Adventures of Donald the Bin:
TR Embassy and Animal Shelter / The Dog Thread
because dogs are the best

A friend of mine shared this from a shelter in MD:

I want this dog. Because he is a beagle and he's 7 and he HAS ONLY ONE EYE and he needs a home and he looks like my dog. But I can't have a second dog.  :crai:

Oh well, here is my dog:


Much of the associated burden will continue to fall upon government budgets, at least under the plausible assumption that the demand for health care doesn't shrink radically. Part of the problem is that fixing people is harder than fixing machines, because it requires the cooperation of what are often recalcitrant patients. That's why productivity improvements are difficult to achieve in education as well. Online learning can be potent and very cheap, but it is hard to get enough of the students to care.

Arguably, we as fallible humans are the ultimate source of the productivity problem, and also a big part of why governments tend to grow. If patients and students would diet properly, take the right medicines and crack open their textbooks, more drastic cost improvements could result.


Prevention saves money, but when the bulk of spending is on end-of-life care and catastrophic care, you're never going to see the same productivity increases that you get from automation of manufacturing facilities or computer programming. Like, how is this not immediately fucking apparent to anyone who knows the first fucking thing about healthcare?

Christ, and even ignoring the stupid arguments, the style of that piece is awful. It's so poorly written that it sounds like a fucking freshman writing seminar paper. How can you be such a shitty writer and end up working in academia and publishing in a major outlet? WHAT THE FUCK, guys?
Intel chiefs presented Trump with claims of Russian efforts to compromise him

Classified documents presented last week to President Obama and President-elect Trump included allegations that Russian operatives claim to have compromising personal and financial information about Mr. Trump, multiple US officials with direct knowledge of the briefings tell CNN.

The allegations were presented in a two-page synopsis that was appended to a report on Russian interference in the 2016 election. The allegations came, in part, from memos compiled by a former British intelligence operative, whose past work US intelligence officials consider credible. The FBI is investigating the credibility and accuracy of these allegations, which are based primarily on information from Russian sources, but has not confirmed many essential details in the memos about Mr. Trump.

These senior intelligence officials also included the synopsis to demonstrate that Russia had compiled information potentially harmful to both political parties, but only released information damaging to Hillary Clinton and Democrats. This synopsis was not an official part of the report from the intelligence community case about Russian hacks, but some officials said it augmented the evidence that Moscow intended to harm Clinton's candidacy and help Trump's, several officials with knowledge of the briefings tell CNN.

The two-page synopsis also included allegations that there was a continuing exchange of information during the campaign between Trump surrogates and intermediaries for the Russian government, according to two national security officials.

It hits all the right notes:
- thimerosal = mercury = death  :stopper:
- formaldehyde  = death :stopper:
- "the flu vaccine gave me the flu"
- everything is tainted with chemicals whose names good average folks can't pronounce
- "Autism and ADHD didn't exist when I was a kid!"
- quote that cites for information on eating "toxin-free" food

This guy is the medical director and COO of the Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic.



One of the more interesting, understated points:
There is an education and race divide among the men who take these jobs, the study found. Black men were 3.3 times as likely as white men to take the lowest-rung health jobs, and other minority men were 1.8 times as likely. White men were more likely to take the higher-status technical jobs.

For men without college degrees, more technical training that equips them for those jobs could help. And if health aide jobs paid more and offered better benefits, they'd probably attract more men. Some hospitals are trying to make caregiving jobs seem manly -- like with a recruitment poster comparing the "adrenaline rush" of being an operating room nurse to mountain climbing.

"At some point or another we have to be responsible or have a part of the responsibility of what is going on," Huizenga said. "Way too often, people pull out their insurance card and they say 'I don't know the difference or cost between an X-ray or an MRI or CT Scan.' I might make a little different decision if I did know (what) some of those costs were and those costs came back to me."

Guess what, buddy? Providers don't know the fucking costs of those things, either, and that's not even considering the negotiation that goes on after care has been provided. It's why it takes a staff of a dozen fucking people and a few weeks at minimum to get the actual payment straightened out. It once took my provider six months to send me a fucking bill.

But here's the best part, the most glorious, wonderful bit of it all - his shining example of how to exercise patient responsibility in his Republican wonderland:
The father of five offered a personal example of how this shift might play out. He says his youngest son fell and injured his arm. Not sure if it was sprained or broken, he and his wife decided to wait until the next morning to take the 10-year-old to the doctor's office, instead of going to the emergency room that night. The arm was broken.

Secret CIA assessment says Russia was trying to help Trump win White House

"It is the assessment of the intelligence community that Russia's goal here was to favor one candidate over the other, to help Trump get elected," said a senior U.S. official briefed on an intelligence presentation made to U.S. senators. "That's the consensus view."

In September, during a secret briefing for congressional leaders, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) voiced doubts about the veracity of the intelligence, according to officials present.


The Trump transition team dismissed the findings in a short statement issued Friday evening. "These are the same people that said Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. The election ended a long time ago in one of the biggest Electoral College victories in history. It's now time to move on and 'Make America Great Again,' " the statement read.


"I don't believe they interfered" in the election, he told Time magazine this week. The hacking, he said, "could be Russia. And it could be China. And it could be some guy in his home in New Jersey."

phew, it's a good thing this guy isn't going to be in charge of the CI-...

The CIA presentation to senators about Russia's intentions fell short of a formal U.S. assessment produced by all 17 intelligence agencies. A senior U.S. official said there were minor disagreements among intelligence officials about the agency's assessment, in part because some questions remain unanswered.

For example, intelligence agencies do not have specific intelligence showing officials in the Kremlin "directing" the identified individuals to pass the Democratic emails to WikiLeaks, a second senior U.S. official said. Those actors, according to the official, were "one step" removed from the Russian government, rather than government employees.

In a secure room in the Capitol used for briefings involving classified information, administration officials broadly laid out the evidence U.S. spy agencies had collected, showing Russia's role in cyber-intrusions in at least two states and in hacking the emails of the Democratic organizations and individuals.

And they made a case for a united, bipartisan front in response to what one official described as "the threat posed by unprecedented meddling by a foreign power in our election process."

The Democratic leaders in the room unanimously agreed on the need to take the threat seriously. Republicans, however, were divided, with at least two GOP lawmakers reluctant to accede to the White House requests.

According to several officials, McConnell raised doubts about the underlying intelligence and made clear to the administration that he would consider any effort by the White House to challenge the Russians publicly an act of partisan politics.

"I HAVE WORKED IN 60 COUNTRIES, covered wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and spent much of 2014 living inside West Africa's Ebola zone, a place gripped by fear and death. What I experienced in the Philippines felt like a new level of ruthlessness: police officers' summarily shooting anyone suspected of dealing or even using drugs, vigilantes' taking seriously Mr. Duterte's call to 'slaughter them all.'"

Jesus christ, this is sickening.
Make your demands here, and maybe we will do something about it.

Good job, BLM!

Oh wai-

It appeared the suspect, who is white, had a recent run-in with police.

A 10-minute video posted on YouTube last month by a user calling himself Scott Greene showed an interaction with officers following an incident at a high school stadium in which he described holding up a Confederate battle flag during the playing of the U.S. national anthem at a football game.

Reuters was unable to immediately confirm whether the video was made by the suspect, whose face does not appear in it. It records a male voice arguing with police over the incident.

The man is heard complaining to police that "African-American people" took the flag from him in the stands, "assaulted" him, and saying he wanted to press charges.