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Anthony Weiner Goes Ballistic At GOP For Killing 9/11 Responders Health Care Bill

Posted on July 30th, 2010 at 16:41 by Paul Jay in category: News

[Quote]:

House Republicans late Thursday were able to corral enough votes to defeat a bill that would have provided up to $7.4 billion in aid to those sickened by toxins resulting from the 9/11 attacks.

In the process, they set off a host of fiery speeches and denunciations from their Democratic colleagues and produced a veritable YouTube moment from Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y), whose district includes many of the affected.


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Comments:

  1. Weiner kicks ass. A while ago I was wishing there were more of Alan Grayson. I guess my wish is starting to come true! Now where’s the rest of the caucus?

Google, CIA Invest in ‘Future’ of Web Monitoring

Posted on July 30th, 2010 at 12:38 by Paul Jay in category: News

[Quote]:

The investment arms of the CIA and Google are both backing a company that monitors the web in real time — and says it uses that information to predict the future.

The company is called Recorded Future, and it scours tens of thousands of websites, blogs and Twitter accounts to find the relationships between people, organizations, actions and incidents — both present and still-to-come. In a white paper, the company says its temporal analytics engine “goes beyond search” by “looking at the ‘invisible links’ between documents that talk about the same, or related, entities and events.”


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Comments:

  1. Now all they need is a “Future Crimes Division!”

  2. Who says they don’t have one already! :-O

  3. I think they already have Tom Cruise leading it.

Putting the ‘F’ in FBI: Did agents cheat on tests?

Posted on July 29th, 2010 at 2:45 by Paul Jay in category: News

[Quote]:

WASHINGTON — FBI Director Robert Mueller told Congress on Wednesday that he does not know how many of his agents cheated on an important exam on the bureau’s policies, an embarrassing revelation that raises questions about whether the FBI knows its own rules for conducting surveillance on Americans.


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Hayward: I’m ‘too busy’ to testify to the Senate about the Lockerbie bomber’s release.

Posted on July 28th, 2010 at 16:27 by Paul Jay in category: News

[Quote]:

On Thursday, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee will be holding a hearing on the release of Lockerbie airliner bomb Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, and the role that BP may have played. Today, however, ousted BP CEO Tony Hayward told reporters that he wouldn’t be attending the hearing because he’s “too busy”:

Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) was infuriated by Hayward’s reply, stating, “It is apparently more important to BP and Mr Hayward to focus on his multimillion dollar golden parachute than to help answer serious questions about whether the company advocated trading blood for oil.”


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Comments:

  1. He’s got chutzpah, but it’s not like the Senate can do anything about it, even theoretically if the two parties could work together. The guy’s not actually in the country the Senate runs. ;p

US ‘fails to account’ for Iraq reconstruction billions

Posted on July 28th, 2010 at 0:36 by Paul Jay in category: News

[Quote]:

A US federal watchdog has criticised the US military for failing to account properly for billions of dollars it received to help rebuild Iraq.

The Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction says the US Department of Defence is unable to account properly for 96% of the money.

Out of just over $9bn (£5.8bn), $8.7bn is unaccounted for, the inspector says.


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WikiLeaks founder: ‘I Enjoy Crushing Bastards’

Posted on July 27th, 2010 at 21:24 by Paul Jay in category: News

[Quote]:

“There is a legitimate role for secrecy, and there is a legitimate role for openness. Unfortunately, those who commit abuses against humanity or against the law find abusing legitimate secrecy to conceal their abuse all too easy. People of good conscience have always revealed abuses by ignoring abusive strictures. It is not WikiLeaks that decides to reveal something. It is a whistleblower or a dissident who decides to reveal it. Our job is to make sure that these individuals are protected, the public is informed and the historical record is not denied.”


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Oil spewing from well near Louisiana marsh

Posted on July 27th, 2010 at 21:06 by Paul Jay in category: News

[Quote]:

Adding insult to the Gulf’s injury, an oil platform hit by a tugboat is now spewing oil and natural gas near a Louisiana marsh area, officials said Tuesday.

The oil and gas is shooting up 20 feet into the air, the office of Plaquemines Parish President Billy Nungesser said.

Crews don’t expect to be able to cap the well before 6 p.m. ET, Coast Guard Rear Adm. Paul Zukunft told reporters.


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Comments:

  1. Amen to that!

  2. And you just know what will happen — BP will use this to get not pay out, or delay paying out, as much as they can for as long as they can: as of now, BP will claim every drop of oil in Plaquemines Parish — and its neighbors, and its neighbors’ neighbors, are from THIS and not Deepwater.

Apple loses big in DRM ruling: jailbreaks are “fair use”

Posted on July 27th, 2010 at 15:25 by John Sinteur in category: Apple

[Quote]:

Every three years, the Library of Congress has the thankless task of listening to people complain about the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. The DMCA forbade most attempts to bypass the digital locks on things like DVDs, music, and computer software, but it also gave the Library the ability to wave its magical copyright wand and make certain DRM cracks legal for three years at a time.This time, the Library went comparatively nuts, allowing widespread bypassing of the CSS encryption on DVDs, declaring iPhone jailbreaking to be "fair use," and letting consumers crack their legally purchased e-books in order to have them read aloud by computers.


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Comments:

  1. I don’t see how this is a loss for Apple. While they might discourage it and say it voids the warranty, they’re not exactly doing anything to curtail jailbreaking of the iPhone. In fact, this ruling could even help them in any upcoming legal battles over a potential monopoly.

  2. Not doing anything? Didn’t Apple patch the first version of the iPhone so that any jailbreak versions were rendered inoperable? Why would that not do that again?

  3. @ tsphillips
    Now that the rule is established, if Apple were to do that, brick your phone because you jailbreak it, they are liable for REALLY big lawsuits and $ettlements. No doubt, they will be appealing this, but with some luck and common sense, the courts will uphold this ruling.

Terminal Tips and Tricks For Mac OS X

Posted on July 25th, 2010 at 20:23 by John Sinteur in category: Apple

Very useful!


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Comments:

  1. Indeed.

  2. Thx.

T-Shirt

Posted on July 25th, 2010 at 14:45 by John Sinteur in category: Great Picture


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Comments:

  1. Any idea where to get one of these?

China battles Yellow Sea oil spill

Posted on July 25th, 2010 at 10:19 by John Sinteur in category: News


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BP fails to put money in promised escrow account.

Posted on July 25th, 2010 at 10:02 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote]:

In a deal negotiated last month, President Obama and BP officials agreed the company would pay $5 billion annually over the next four years into an escrow account for damage its oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico caused. Ken Feinberg, who was appointed to administer oil spill claims out of the escrow fund, has said he “hasn’t been able to start writing claims checks” because BP PLC has failed to deposit any money into the $20 billion fund it promised to create:

Feinberg, who was appointed to administer oil spill claims out of the fund, said he doesn’t have the authority to force BP to deposit the money, but his hands are tied until it does. “I don’t want the checks to bounce,” he said.

The day after the escrow account’s establishment in June, BP CEO Tony Hayward told Congress that BP is “unwavering in our commitment to fulfill all our responsibilities” and the company “won’t stop spending until the job is done.”


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China Calls Our Bluff: “The US is Insolvent and Faces Bankruptcy as a Pure Debtor Nation but [U.S.] Rating Agencies Still Give it High Rankings”

Posted on July 25th, 2010 at 9:58 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote]:

America’s biggest creditor – China – has called our bluff.

As the Financial Times notes, the head of China’s biggest credit rating agency has said America is insolvent and that U.S. credit ratings are a joke:

The head of China’s largest credit rating agency has slammed his western counterparts for causing the global financial crisis and said that as the world’s largest creditor nation China should have a bigger say in how governments and their debt are rated.

“The western rating agencies are politicised and highly ideological and they do not adhere to objective standards,” Guan Jianzhong, chairman of Dagong Global Credit Rating, told the Financial Times in an interview.

[..]

“The US is insolvent and faces bankruptcy as a pure debtor nation but the rating agencies still give it high rankings ,” Mr Guan said.


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Comments:

  1. Notwithstanding issues with credit agencies, this post really misses the point. A key issue is China’s currency is held low by their central government. This has given China an incredible advantage and is one of the reasons for the growth of its manufacturing sector. If the currency were allowed to truly float, which it should, it would certainly rise and deprive China its currently unfair competitive advantage. So while the blog carps about the poor China as victim, it is nonsense. China’s economic policy is politicized and one need to look no further than its currency policy.

Driftwood at La Push, Washington

Posted on July 25th, 2010 at 9:43 by John Sinteur in category: Great Picture

[Quote]:

This "piece" of driftwood washed up on the beach at La Push, a small community in Clallam County, Washington. On our visit there in early spring, a very strong gale was blowing. Powerful winds accompanied by high tides are required to bring monsters like this ashore. The entire length of the beach was strewn with driftwood of all sizes.


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Cartoons

Posted on July 24th, 2010 at 21:06 by John Sinteur in category: Cartoon


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Church denounces gay priests after magazine revelations

Posted on July 24th, 2010 at 17:41 by John Sinteur in category: Pastafarian News

[Quote]:

An Italian Catholic diocese has denounced homosexual priests for their "double life" and said they should not be in the priesthood.

The Diocese of Rome was responding to a magazine article on three homosexual priests that gave details of alleged sexual encounters and trips to clubs.

The diocese said "the honour of all the others" was sullied by their behaviour.

Wait, what? Catholic priests still have honour left?


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America’s Best Christian Explains Marriage for Non-Christians

Posted on July 24th, 2010 at 17:37 by John Sinteur in category: Pastafarian News


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Comments:

  1. Haha! I’ve seen stuff like that before. (: There are a couple of inaccuracies, though — Adam and Eve had a third kid, Shet (English translations call him Seth), and *he* was the one who propagated his line. He presumably married his sisters, not his mother, since Adam went on for 800 years after begetting Shet and had more kids. (Shet had his first son Enosh at age 105, so there was plenty of time.) You could say that’s bad, but then again, they hadn’t received the Torah yet, so it wasn’t wrong to them yet, the Torah being the code of law for Yahweh’s chosen people. He hadn’t chosen any people yet at the time — there weren’t that many to choose, presumably. ;p

    (By the way, you know the bit about meat and milk? Look up Genesis 18:7-8. Abraham just got visited by angels, one of whom was possibly Yahweh himself, and he’s running to make them comfortable. “Then Abraham ran to the herd, took a calf, tender and choice, and gave it to a servant-boy, who hastened to prepare it. He took curds and milk and the calf that had been prepared and set those before them; and he waited on them under the tree as they ate.” That’s right, goat meat cheeseburgers; the verse before this mentions the flour cakes. So very kosher.)

Fuck Everything, We’re Doing Six Blades

Posted on July 24th, 2010 at 17:27 by John Sinteur in category: ¿ʞɔnɟ ǝɥʇ ʇɐɥʍ, Funny!

You think The Onion is ridiculous?

Wrong!


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Comments:

  1. It’s not the first time the Onion correctly predicted something. Don’t you remember when Clinton got elected and they had the headline, New President Feels Nation’s Pain, Breasts

    Or even better yet: Bush Takes Oath of Office, Declares End to “Our National Nightmare of Peace and Prosperity”

  2. Yeah, but how many times has the Onion *underestimated* the foolishness?

  3. I seem to recall that Pat Robertson or Jerry Falwell took seriously the article about how the ’98 homosexual recruitment drive was reaching its goal.

  4. Well, I’ve found that a Schick Twin works best for me, and I have no beard and a shaved head! Fark Gillette – they are too expensive, and frankly just suck!

Toxic legacy of US assault on Fallujah ‘worse than Hiroshima’

Posted on July 24th, 2010 at 17:22 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote]:

Dramatic increases in infant mortality, cancer and leukaemia in the Iraqi city of Fallujah, which was bombarded by US Marines in 2004, exceed those reported by survivors of the atomic bombs that were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945, according to a new study.

Iraqi doctors in Fallujah have complained since 2005 of being overwhelmed by the number of babies with serious birth defects, ranging from a girl born with two heads to paralysis of the lower limbs. They said they were also seeing far more cancers than they did before the battle for Fallujah between US troops and insurgents.


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Alarms, detectors disabled so top rig officials could sleep

Posted on July 24th, 2010 at 16:51 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote]:

Critical fire and gas leak alarm systems had been disabled for at least a year aboard the Deepwater Horizon because the rig’s leaders didn’t want to wake up to false alarms, a rig chief engineer tech told federal investigators.


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Doubts surface on North Korea’s role in ship sinking

Posted on July 24th, 2010 at 16:51 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote]:

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton calls the evidence “overwhelming” that the Cheonan, a South Korean warship that sank in March, was hit by a North Korean torpedo. Vice President Joe Biden has cited the South Korean-led panel investigating the sinking as a model of transparency. But challenges to the official version of events are coming from an unlikely place: within South Korea…

Armed with dossiers of their own scientific studies and bolstered by conspiracy theories, critics dispute the findings announced May 20 by South Korean President Lee Myung-bak, which pointed a finger at Pyongyang.

They also question why Lee made the announcement nearly two months after the ship’s sinking, on the very day campaigning opened for fiercely contested local elections. Many accuse the conservative leader of using the deaths of 46 sailors to stir up anti-communist sentiment and sway the vote…

“I couldn’t find the slightest sign of an explosion,” said Shin Sang-chul, a former shipbuilding executive-turned-investigative journalist. “The sailors drowned to death. Their bodies were clean. We didn’t even find dead fish in the sea.”

Shin, who was appointed to the joint investigative panel by the opposition Democratic Party, inspected the damaged ship with other experts April 30. He was removed from the panel shortly afterward, he says, because he had voiced a contrary opinion: that the Cheonan hit ground in the shallow water off the Korean peninsula and then damaged its hull trying to get off a reef.

“It was the equivalent of a simple traffic accident at sea,” Shin said.

[..]

Two South Korean-born U.S. academics have joined the chorus of skepticism, holding a news conference this month in Tokyo to voice their suspicions about the “smoking gun:” a piece of torpedo propeller with a handwritten mark in blue ink reading “No. 1″ in Korean.

“You could put that mark on an iPhone and claim it was manufactured in North Korea,” scoffed one of the academics, Seunghun Lee, a professor of physics at the University of Virginia.

Lee called the discovery of the propeller fragment five days before the government’s news conference suspicious. The salvaged part had more corrosion than would have been expected after just 50 days in the water, yet the blue writing was surprisingly clear, he said.

“The government is lying when they said this was found underwater. I think this is something that was pulled out of a warehouse of old materials to show to the press,” Lee said.

[..]

Rear Adm. Thomas J. Eccles, the senior U.S. representative on the panel, said investigators considered all possibilities: a grounding, an internal explosion, a collision with a mine. But they quickly concluded that the boat was sunk by a bubble-jet torpedo, which exploded underneath the vessel and didn’t leave the usual signs of an explosion, he said.

“The pattern of damage was exactly aligned with that kind of weapon,” Eccles said in a telephone interview. “Torpedoes these days are designed to drive underneath the target and explode. They use the energy of their explosion to make a bubble that expands and contracts. It is designed to break the back of the ship.”


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Comments:

  1. Not to mention the piece of shrapnel was given to the authorities by Elvis. The truth here is what you want it to be. Nothing to see, folks, move along.

Amazon deforestation in dramatic decline, official figures show

Posted on July 24th, 2010 at 12:06 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote]:

Large-scale deforestation in the Amazon rainforest fell dramatically last year, according to official figures released yesterday.

Data from satellite sensors making fortnightly detections of only larger areas of forest destruction (greater than 25 hectares) was 1,500km2 between August 2009 and May 2010, compared with 3,000km2 in the same period a year earlier.

The Brazilian environment agency, Ibama, which is responsible for protecting the forests against illegal logging, said the drop was due to the increased use of satellite data to spot the felling of trees and new tactics to deter loggers, including ending their ability to hide under cloud cover.


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No To Oligarchy

Posted on July 24th, 2010 at 9:36 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote]:

During the Bush years alone, from 2000-2008, median family income dropped by nearly $2,200 and millions lost their health insurance. Today, because of stagnating wages and higher costs for basic necessities, the average two-wage-earner family has less disposable income than a one-wage-earner family did a generation ago. The average American today is underpaid, overworked and stressed out as to what the future will bring for his or her children. For many, the American dream has become a nightmare.

[..]

The 400 richest families in America, who saw their wealth increase by some $400 billion during the Bush years, have now accumulated $1.27 trillion in wealth. Four hundred families! During the last fifteen years, while these enormously rich people became much richer their effective tax rates were slashed almost in half. While the highest-paid 400 Americans had an average income of $345 million in 2007, as a result of Bush tax policy they now pay an effective tax rate of 16.6 percent, the lowest on record.


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Comments:

  1. What about oligarhy? Is that one OK?

They want it long, straight, curly, fuzzy, snaggy, shaggy, ratty, matty, oily, greasy, fleecy, shining, gleaming, streaming, flaxen, waxen, knotted, polka-dotted, twisted, beaded, braided, powdered, flowered, and confettied, bangled, tangled, spangled, and spaghettied, hair

Posted on July 24th, 2010 at 9:22 by John Sinteur in category: News

Of course, Colbert has something to say about it:

The Colbert Report Mon – Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Modest-Con 2010
www.colbertnation.com
Colbert Report Full Episodes 2010 Election Fox News

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Pilot ejects an instant before fighterjet crashes

Posted on July 24th, 2010 at 9:00 by John Sinteur in category: Great Picture

[Quote]:

Pilot Capt. Brian Bews ejects as his a CF-18 fighter jet plummets to the ground during a practice flight at the Lethbridge County Airport on Friday, July 23 for the weekend airshow in Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada. "He is alive and we believe right now that his injuries are non-life-threatening," Canadian Forces Capt. Nicole Meszaros told CBC News.

More amazing pictures at the link


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Most iPhone users love AT&T

Posted on July 24th, 2010 at 6:32 by John Sinteur in category: Apple, Google

[Quote]:

77% of iPhone owners say they’ll buy another iPhone, compared to 20% of Android customers who say they’ll buy another Android phone.


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Comments:

  1. Lies, damned lies and… yet again: statistics.

  2. Article has a correction that invalidates this quote.

Tribute to Escher

Posted on July 23rd, 2010 at 19:28 by John Sinteur in category: awesome

awesome


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Nokia Profit Falls Amid Tough Smartphone Competition

Posted on July 23rd, 2010 at 19:21 by John Sinteur in category: Apple, Google

[Quote]:

Nokia, the world’s largest maker of cellphones, said Thursday that its profit fell 64 percent in the second quarter as it struggled to compete with the innovative software makers Apple and Google in the critical smartphone segment.

[..]

“Nokia’s problems are big and serious,” he said. “The emergence of the iPhone and the Android operating system have made that all too clear. Nokia was not prepared for either one. They are clearly not the same industry leader they have been for the last 30 years.”


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Comments:

  1. ..and there software sucks; they are slow to keep up with changes (still cannot sync E71/72 with bookmarks with Firefox 3.6.x, although 3.5.x works); are slow to innovate, and customer service is virtually non existent. If there is one company that is a short, it is Nokia.

  2. Actually, the only phone-PC synch application that is better than useless is the Nokia one.
    Simple, it works and does what I want.
    I think that’s the only thing they beat everyone hands down.

  3. @Ronald – what browser do you use to sync your bookmarks? How about mail, contact and calender? Any of these non Microsoft?

Microsoft hopes employees will write WP7 apps in spare time

Posted on July 23rd, 2010 at 19:19 by John Sinteur in category: Microsoft

[Quote]:

Microsoft is hoping to bolster its early Windows Phone 7 app list with those made by its staff in their free time, a memo obtained Thursday said. As part of the same note that promised free WP7 phones to staff, mobile lead Andy Lees encouraged workers to write their own apps to help support the launch. The company is further rolling out an employee developer program to fast-track apps made unofficially within Microsoft.


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Comments:

  1. Help me to figure something out. A decade ago, Microsoft had been declared a monopoly and was on the verge of being broken up into smaller companies. There’s room for debate as to whether it should have been, or whether that was an overzealous government that pulled back at the right time.

    When I see a story like this, I feel a degree of, for lack of a better word, pity, for the company. It is no longer the powerhouse that it once was and I’m trying to put my finger on what actually brought it down. Yes, there were similar anti-monopoly lawsuits in Europe, and MS had to pay some pretty hefty fines and rework the way it handled its operating system.

    Was it *that* caught off-guard by the innovations of Apple and Google that it is struggling to catch up? Does Bill Gates’s retirement have anything to do with it?

    The simple truth of the matter is that there’s probably an increasing number of households and businesses worldwide that can run quite effectively and efficiently without owning a single product with the name Microsoft on it. Note that this is not an inherent giveaway to Apple; between alternatives in the operating system and office suite realms and an increasing number of people who might not even want to use desktop computers they just strike me as losing their footing quite quickly.

    It’s enough to make you wonder if the XBox will be the future of Microsoft.

Le notti brave dei preti gay

Posted on July 23rd, 2010 at 18:24 by John Sinteur in category: Pastafarian News

[Quote]:

Un’inchiesta con telecamera nascosta, seguita da verifiche minuziose e da controlli accurati. Per venti giorni Carmelo Abbate, giornalista di Panorama, affiancato da un «complice» gay, si è infiltrato nelle serate brave di alcuni preti che, a Roma, conducono una sorprendente doppia vita: di giorno sono sacerdoti in abito talare; di notte, smessa la tonaca, sono uomini perfettamente integrati negli ambienti omosessuali della capitale. Quella che ne è uscita è un’inchiesta sul campo che ha permesso di scoprire una realtà inedita e per certi versi sconvolgente: sacerdoti che partecipano a feste notturne con escort uomini; che hanno rapporti omosessuali con partner casuali; che frequentano chat e ritrovi gay.

[Quote]:

A gay priest sex scandal has rocked the Catholic Church in Italy today after a weekly news magazine released details of a shock investigation it had carried out.

Using hidden cameras, a journalist from Panorama magazine – owned by Italian Prime Minister and media baron Silvio Berlusconi – filmed three priests as they attended gay nightspots and had casual sex.

Today there was no immediate comment from the Italian Bishops Conference and the Vatican – which has been rocked by a series of sex scandals involving paedophile priests since the start of the year.


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